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

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Old 04-19-2016, 03:00 PM   #1
Kevin Johnson
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fitness for a 3 yr old. just keep them outside?

our son just turned 3, i have a garage gym and have loved that he has been able to watch me and mimmicks the movements i do. im more of a 531 / sprints and sled drag kinda person over xfit, but it seems xfit is really into helping kids be fit more than other fields. i am just wondering though, i want my son to be healthy and fit, but he doesnt really care to follow very specific instructions yet. this may be a silly and obvious question, but is the best thing for him to be healthy right now besides us eating well just a matter of him being outside a lot, playing, running, biking etc? is there a website w fun xfit style workouts for kids this age? i see them occassionally but not like a list of diff things age appropriate. thanks for any help, or just tell me im crazy.
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Old 04-19-2016, 06:18 PM   #2
David Meverden
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Re: fitness for a 3 yr old. just keep them outside?

I think you're being a little crazy. I haven't worked with 3 year olds (I taught gymnastics classes with kids as young as 6), but I don't think they are going to be ready for anything structured like a workout.

What you can do:
1) Play physical games: Throwing and catching games, maybe build a little obstacle course with stuff in the gym. Maybe tug or war? Gotta be a million games you could play.

2) Have toys and light equipment so he can mimic you if he wants. Maybe get a plastic toy barbell from WOD Shop (http://www.wodshop.com/wod-toys-barbell-mini/ WFS) or light equipment he could copy you with (for instance, if you did Atlas Stones, you could have a light medball and short platform for him to try it). Could also incorporate more movements he could copy, like burpees. But don't push it. Whatever you do with him needs to be fun.
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Old 04-19-2016, 08:38 PM   #3
Steven Wingo
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Re: fitness for a 3 yr old. just keep them outside?

I believe it is worth searching out CrossFit Kids programs in your area, watch a class or two, and talk to the coaches to see what they recommend. I don't have experience coaching kids that young, but have observed multiple different CrossFit Kids coaches. The good ones are masters at getting kids to move, have fun, and reinforce the positive movement patterns they typically already have if they are still so young.

Is 3 too young?

I don't know. But the good CrossFit Kids coaches will be able to give you some knowledgeable guidance. When our box got a great kids coach--who is also a kindergarten teacher so he is quite experienced working with young kids--the program exploded in numbers and the kids absolutely love it. I'm amazed at what he has accomplished. The kids love it, they are loud, and it looks like all fun and games for them even though they are doing lots of the same stuff you would see in our regular classes.
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Old 04-19-2016, 10:19 PM   #4
Ben Kissam
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Re: fitness for a 3 yr old. just keep them outside?

I am a PE teacher and have worked with kids as young as 4, so here are some thoughts:

- Since he's young, your #1 goal is to continue to foster his enjoyment of physical activity and movement. Make whatever you do fun. Most importantly, continue leading by example with your own training because he obviously looks up to you and will want to do it just because you do.

- Using a parachute is a really innovative way of teaching kids basic movements like pulls, squats, presses, etc. You can make games out of it by putting balls on it and "popping" them off.

- Keeping things fun means keeping things simple. Most kids are turned off the second you start talking so much that the fun, engaging activity stops.

- Take notes. Kids have the most AMAZING movement patterns. It is literally amazing to watch a 3-4 year old kid drop into a perfect squat with flawless mechanics.... I on the other hand have to mobilize and warm up for 10-15 minutes to even get close.

Years of shoes and sitting at desks. Yuck.

Hope this helps!
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Old 04-20-2016, 12:25 AM   #5
Alex Burden
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Re: fitness for a 3 yr old. just keep them outside?

Let your boy keep moving and do not worry about it. Keep him away from Ipads

Take him to a playround and let him run himself off. At this age they cannot take instructions but they will do what you do, so if you run he will want to run, if you want to play he will play, if you do a burpee he may try to copy you....

Unless you are trying to build a super human kid to be something amazing with no life (like the Russians and Chinese do to their elite kids) then let him be a kid and keep him activated.

When the time comes later when he shows interest you will know. Kids can start to take instructions and remember them from about 6yrs of age.
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Old 04-30-2016, 06:59 PM   #6
Christopher Morris
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Re: fitness for a 3 yr old. just keep them outside?

I've got three-year-old twins. They play outside. They imitate some of the things they see me do during a workout. There is no plan or instruction. Kids that age are naturally active.

One of them climbed a rope unassisted this morning. She has seen the rest of the family doing climbing it, and I've helped her many times before. Today it clicked for her and up she went. Would I ever TRY to instruct a three-year-old how to do that? Not on your life.
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Old 05-02-2016, 07:13 PM   #7
Aaron Gainer
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Re: fitness for a 3 yr old. just keep them outside?

As another P.E. teacher that teaches k-12, please encourage them to play as much as possible. Remember, teaching them to do bodyweight squats and play on the monkey bars can be the most powerful tools in your shed! May as well have fun with it!
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Old 05-03-2016, 07:21 AM   #8
Joshua Murphy
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Re: fitness for a 3 yr old. just keep them outside?

Really just keep it fun. And remember that they learn by mimicking.
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Old 06-01-2016, 10:18 AM   #9
Paul Peterson
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Re: fitness for a 3 yr old. just keep them outside?

Quote:
Originally Posted by Kevin Johnson View Post
our son just turned 3, i have a garage gym and have loved that he has been able to watch me and mimmicks the movements i do. im more of a 531 / sprints and sled drag kinda person over xfit, but it seems xfit is really into helping kids be fit more than other fields. i am just wondering though, i want my son to be healthy and fit, but he doesnt really care to follow very specific instructions yet. this may be a silly and obvious question, but is the best thing for him to be healthy right now besides us eating well just a matter of him being outside a lot, playing, running, biking etc? is there a website w fun xfit style workouts for kids this age? i see them occassionally but not like a list of diff things age appropriate. thanks for any help, or just tell me im crazy.
I have three kids, 9-6 and 1, and jump rope might be fun for them. Also, finding a gymnastics class or a playset with rings/bar to hang and swing from would be cool.

Have fun with it!

Paul
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Old 06-15-2016, 09:31 AM   #10
Ludovic Deguy
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Re: fitness for a 3 yr old. just keep them outside?

When I workout, I often take my older children with me (6 and 3).
I workout in my home Gym (Set in a little barn at the back of my yard).

They have some light equipment as rubber bars, a small bench, ...

My 3 years old tends to just go as she wants, she imitates me or she does something else. Pre-school kids cannot stay focused for a very long time on a specific activity, so it is better to just set the environment and to let them evolve freely.

Since he began school my 6 years old has become much more structured and is now loving performing rounds for time or AMRAP or EMOM.

I donít force anything, most of the time I must rather temper his effort, he seems to be able to move with intensity for hours 

When I see how they move at such a young age, I am pretty sure they will kick my *** once they are teenagers.
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