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Fitness Theory and Practice. CrossFit's rationale & foundations. Who is fit? What is fitness?

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Old 02-10-2004, 03:53 PM   #1
Kevin Roddy
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For anyone who would like to increase jump height, these are some good programs. Check them out, borrow stuff here and there. It's all good.

http://www.geocities.com/omega_train...tionMaster.htm
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Old 02-10-2004, 04:30 PM   #2
Ryan Atkins
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Hi Kevin,

I'm going to play Devil's advocate on this one. If I had the time and energy to implement another program besides Crossfit and the extra pull-up work I'm doing now, I'd probably devote more practice to the O-lifts, even if my goal was improving my jumping ability. Here's a quote from the article that Barry cited earlier today:

"Sports scientists found that Olympic lifters were able to both vertical jump higher than any class of athletes (including the high jumpers), and run a 25-yard dash faster*than any class of athletes (including the sprinters)."

It never ceases to amaze me the degree these monsters can apply themselves in athletic endeavours that they don't train for specifically (i.e. running, jumping, deadlifting, etc.). Also, I'm guessing the O-lifting would present less wear and tear on the joints then the jumping I saw in a few of the programs I looked at. Might not be a factor for you young'ns out there, but for us older, ACL-impaired folk, it's a big priority.

Just a thought,

Ryan
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Old 02-10-2004, 04:58 PM   #3
Kevin Roddy
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Good points, Ryan. I was originally wondering whether it would be beneficial to post this as, after all, the WOD is quite a bit on its own. However, I feel that there is something to be learned from every source, so I'll keep on looking.

Yeah, those olympic lifters are beasts. Wasn't there some link of a short interview with Tommy Kono(sp?) on here a while ago? I believe he said that his vertical jump was higher than average, without any special training outside of the lifts.
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Old 02-10-2004, 10:37 PM   #4
Ryan Atkins
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Kevin,

Reading to and responding to your initial post prompted me to search the archives on the subject. I came across a relatively recent thread (http://www.crossfit.com/discus/messages/22/2073.html) where Tyler mentioned an interview with Tommy Kono in PowerAthletesMag (http://www.powerathletesmag.com/arch.../tommykono.htm). Also Tyler mentioned that the Olympic lifters were actually third, not first, in jumping ability (behind basketball players and the high jumpers). Can anyone account for the ranking differences between the two sources? Also, does anyone know where I can find the results of the 1964 study? Like Tyler, I've heard it referenced quite a bit, but it would be nice to see the actual figures (not to mention to see how other athletes performed outside their specialty).

On a final note - Kevin, I hope my response to your post didn't discourage you from posting links in the future. That was definitely not the intent. Virtually all of my fitness education starts at Crossfit and wouldn't be possible if it weren't for people like you who are willing to dig something up and share it with the rest of us. Because of this reason you (and others like you) have my gratitude.

I'm curious. It seems like you're earnestly interested in increasing your vertical. Are you involved in an activity that requires this? If so, what is it?

-Ryan
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Old 02-11-2004, 06:15 AM   #5
Steve Shafley
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Before you go all ga-ga on olympic lifting for jumping, realize this: The study (that I remember) was done on OLYMPIC athletes. I believe this was done during an Olympic games, with the likes of Paul Anderson and Tommy Kono participating.

To have an effect on jumping ability, you have to actually be good at the lifts, which includes heavy lifts. HEAVY LIFTS. We are not talking about 95 or even 135 lb snatches or 225lb clean and jerks (unless you are a very lightweight individual). This involves a lot of specialization, which might better be put into practice just jumping. It all boils down to what gives you the most returns for your training time.

On Dan John's site, in the Pacifica Barbell Club stuff somewhere, he tells a story about being able to hold onto a 45# plate and jumping up to slap the ceiling. This was not from tossing in a few cleans, snatches, and jerks here and there, this was from training in a competitive environment, using heavy weights, under a competent coach.

Now, I'm not bagging on olympic lifts, and I use the power variations and swell as a variety of explosive pulls in my training, but you need to think about the context of the entire study, and the time and effort it takes to do olympic lifts correctly and heavily.

Steve

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Old 02-11-2004, 10:49 AM   #6
Ryan Atkins
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Hi Steve,

Before you go all ga-ga on olympic lifting for jumping, realize this: The study (that I remember) was done on OLYMPIC athletes. I believe this was done during an Olympic games, with the likes of Paul Anderson and Tommy Kono participating.

Weren't the world's best high jumpers also represented in that study? I thought the O-lifters were competing against Olympic level jumpers who, presumably, had spent the majority of their training utilizing specialized jumping programs. If, like the article states, the O-lifters did indeed beat them (I really want to see that damn study), it would suggest necessary change in the training methods of that particular sport.


To have an effect on jumping ability, you have to actually be good at the lifts, which includes heavy lifts. HEAVY LIFTS. We are not talking about 95 or even 135 lb snatches or 225lb clean and jerks (unless you are a very lightweight individual). This involves a lot of specialization, which might better be put into practice just jumping.

In my view, Crossfit doesn't demand that we become expert gymnasts. However, I bet there are a lot a Crossfitters out there who can claim significant results from mastering, or attempting to master BASIC level gymnastic moves. I'm speculating the same may be true with the O-lifting - you don't necessarily have to be a world class athlete to realize noteworthy results. Also, your argument makes a little sense, but only if vertical leaping was my sole fitness goal. Most of us also want to run faster, deadlift more or whatever. Developing a specialized program for each would be time consuming and tedious. If you can show me that a specialized jumping program can cross develop skills the same way O-lifting does, the argument might hold water. I doubt the possibility, however, otherwise I am assuming Coach would not treat box jumps the way Dr. Sears treats grain-based food - like condiments. When viewed in this manner doesn't the O-lifting give you the 'most returns for your training time.'

Crossfit does use a lot of training methods - O-lifting, kettlebells, gymnastics, medicine balls, sprints and so on. If I had to chose just one of these to practice for the rest of my life, it would have to be the O-lifting - the 'specialization' would definitely be worth it.

Sorry for the lenghty post.

Ryan
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Old 02-11-2004, 12:23 PM   #7
Steve Shafley
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Ryan,

I understand what you are saying, however, you are dealing with EXTREMELY fast twitch people. The olympic lifters were also the strongest athletes in those olympics. I just don't think you can isolate that one thing (olympic lifting) and say that's why they could jump so high and hit a 25 meter sprint so fast.

I'd be interested in seeing this study duplicated this olympic cycle, because now everyone uses strength training. Back then, the OLs were simply so much stronger than the other athletes, that comparisons might be invalid.

Don't get me wrong, though, olympic lifting is one of those "bang for your buck" activities. It's high skill, high speed, high weight, and I think that one of the best gifts an athlete could give himself is to assure competence in the lifts at an early training age.

This gets off into a whole other topic, though, so I'll stop here.

Maybe, though, my argument above makes the case...the OLs were stronger than their other sport counterparts, Olympic lifting made them stronger, and that's that, eh?
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Old 02-11-2004, 12:53 PM   #8
Lincoln Brigham
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The study in question was alleged to have happened at the Mexico Olympics, much later than Kono and Anderson. The funny thing is, no one seems to be able to FIND this study.

In reading the Elite Track forum, it appears that the doing well in the first few yards of a sprint revolves mainly around the generation of raw explosive power. That would explain why Weightlifters seem to do so well in very short sprints. AFTER the first few yards, it's a matter of raw speed and refined technique - things like leg recovery, hip height, angle of knee extension, etc. After the 50 meter mark, winning the race is a question of who slows down the least. Weightlifting wouldn't help with that.

Likewise, in both jumpers and weightlifters, scientists have found that the key to success is NOT who generates the highest force against the ground. Independantly, both sports have found that the best athletes are the ones who generate the highest rates of acceleration at the very last segment of the hip and knee extension. So, in theory, weightlifting trains the same critical aspect of movement as jumping.
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Old 02-11-2004, 12:55 PM   #9
Ryan Atkins
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Good point. My arguments were based solely off of training effects; I failed to consider the genetic component completely. It's to bad there is not a whole bunch of twins out there (one a world class lifter and the other a world class athlete in another sport). Percentage-wise, how much would you say genetics influences the outcome of a performance athlete? It's an area of fitness I am pretty much unfamiliar with. Besides the purely genetic factor, we would probably have to take into account the fact that naturally stronger people would likely gravitate towards O-lifting as opposed to people not so gifted (who would then pursue other interests, like underwater basket weaving or whatever).

Ryan
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Old 02-11-2004, 04:24 PM   #10
Ross Hunt
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Siff cites the study in Supertraining; he provides references for all his citations. I believe he states that the O-lifters out-performed jumpers in simple vertical leaps - not in their competition events. Event skill, and, in the multi-jump events, reduction of foot contact time, probably plays a greater role in success at the jump events than pure vertical leaping ability.

Ross Hunt
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