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Running a CrossFit Facility Tips and guidance on how to open and operate a CrossFit gym.

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Old 07-02-2008, 02:18 PM   #21
Chris Walls
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Re: Afiliates who do not use Barbells?

I've only done a couple of outdoor workouts and I had KBs at one, and brought my barbells out to another, medicine balls were at both. I would rather haul around 10 barbells then 30 kbs personally, but that's just me.

If it's just a temporary thing until you're in a space then make do with what you can, there's affiliates that started with less.
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Old 07-02-2008, 02:23 PM   #22
Jeff Yan
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Re: Afiliates who do not use Barbells?

Justin
It seems like you're already leaning in one direction and are seeking validation. You gotten by without barbells so far and there doesn't seem to be any particular time urgency to your decision. Continue to give your KBs a little more time, see how you feel, and let us konw. Perhaps this is also a question you should bring up with your clients as well. What do they want?

I agree that you don't absolutely need barbells to do CF (you're not going to follow the main site WODs anyway, are you?), but I also do agree that they are a very key component, particularly in terms of skill training. I also think there's a chance that eventually you or your clients might get bored without them, but maybe that's not a bridge you have to cross yet in the near future.

I suggest contacting Greg Privatera, Erin Davidson or Steve Liberati of EvoFit to get their thoughts. They are currently doing outdoor workouts too.
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Old 07-02-2008, 02:24 PM   #23
Justin Rovtar
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Re: Afiliates who do not use Barbells?

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Originally Posted by Chris Walls View Post
I've only done a couple of outdoor workouts and I had KBs at one, and brought my barbells out to another, medicine balls were at both. I would rather haul around 10 barbells then 30 kbs personally, but that's just me.

If it's just a temporary thing until you're in a space then make do with what you can, there's affiliates that started with less.
Don't forget that in addition to hauling the barbells you need to haul all the bumpers as well. Mainly I am integrating the Crossfit concepts into my already existing outdoor Boot camp. One day I will have a facility.

I am also selling my program as a Crossfit Hybrid due the the lack of facility.

JR
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Old 07-02-2008, 02:29 PM   #24
Joey Powell
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Re: Afiliates who do not use Barbells?

This is a rare occasion. I agree with Zach.
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Old 07-02-2008, 02:35 PM   #25
Zach Davis
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Re: Afiliates who do not use Barbells?

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Originally Posted by Justin Rovtar View Post
Zach,

I get your point. I still think there are only a few exercises that require a Barbell instead of KB/DB/SB. Two of them being Deadlift & Back Squat.

Just out of curiosity, what is your overall experience with Kettlebells.
Are you able to clean and Press/jerk double 102 lb bells?
I'm not sure how my performance with KBs relates to the question at hand...

As for overall experience, I use them to implement a CrossFit program, and that's it... We are more reliant on them when we train younger athletes, but for the most part, they aren't involved any more in what we do in our gym than they are in the main-site WOD.

You can duplicate just about any weighted movement known to man with a kettlebell... duplicating the movement is not the problem. What you can't do is duplicate the load. I have never met ANYONE who could perform one of the following movements with the same amount of weight using KBs as with a bar:
Deadlift
Squat (Back, Front, Overhead, etc...)
Press (or any overhead lift)
Deadlift
Clean
Snatch
Bench Press

Single-arm or shifting-load devices are ultimately inferior at developing strength to a good barbell, because their very nature limits the amount of weight that the trainee can move, which in turn affects motor unit recruitment, etc...

Lest we open an even bigger can of worms: challenge your closest 20 kettlebell enthusiasts to get forearm x-rays... it's pretty enlightening. I don't care how dialed your technique is, KB cleans and snatches are designed to smash bones.

Zach
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Old 07-02-2008, 02:36 PM   #26
Zach Davis
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Re: Afiliates who do not use Barbells?

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Originally Posted by Joey Powell View Post
This is a rare occasion. I agree with Zach.
I'm going to put this up on the whiteboard in the gym
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Old 07-02-2008, 02:40 PM   #27
Justin Rovtar
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Re: Afiliates who do not use Barbells?

Quote:
Originally Posted by Zach Davis View Post
I'm not sure how my performance with KBs relates to the question at hand...

As for overall experience, I use them to implement a CrossFit program, and that's it... We are more reliant on them when we train younger athletes, but for the most part, they aren't involved any more in what we do in our gym than they are in the main-site WOD.

You can duplicate just about any weighted movement known to man with a kettlebell... duplicating the movement is not the problem. What you can't do is duplicate the load. I have never met ANYONE who could perform one of the following movements with the same amount of weight using KBs as with a bar:
Deadlift
Squat (Back, Front, Overhead, etc...)
Press (or any overhead lift)
Deadlift
Clean
Snatch
Bench Press

Single-arm or shifting-load devices are ultimately inferior at developing strength to a good barbell, because their very nature limits the amount of weight that the trainee can move, which in turn affects motor unit recruitment, etc...

Lest we open an even bigger can of worms: challenge your closest 20 kettlebell enthusiasts to get forearm x-rays... it's pretty enlightening. I don't care how dialed your technique is, KB cleans and snatches are designed to smash bones.

Zach
Zack,

I understand the loading and motor unit recruitment issue. The only way to increase the load with KB is to use 2 bilaterally.

Thanks for your comments in this debate.

JR
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Old 07-02-2008, 02:51 PM   #28
Justin Rovtar
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Re: Afiliates who do not use Barbells?

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Originally Posted by Dave Randolph View Post
I do almost all kettlebells and body-weight. I'm starting to introduce barbell dead lift & cleans, but my intent is to stay kb focused. They are easier to teach, more approachable, take less space and easier to work with in general than barbells.
Of course since I've been teaching kbs for 6 yrs and have barely done barbell work, I'm a little biased!

The biggest issue I've had is with CrossFitter's from out of town who want to work out. So far most don't have kb experience and because of the way I run my classes it is tough to accommodate them
Dave,

What kind of strength gains/limitations have you noticed using only KB's? Do you think most of your clients quickly reach a strength level where they are ready to move on to heavier barbell lifts?

Last edited by Justin Rovtar : 07-02-2008 at 02:54 PM.
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Old 07-02-2008, 03:26 PM   #29
Justin Rovtar
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Re: Afiliates who do not use Barbells?

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Originally Posted by Jeff Yan View Post
Justin
It seems like you're already leaning in one direction and are seeking validation. You gotten by without barbells so far and there doesn't seem to be any particular time urgency to your decision. Continue to give your KBs a little more time, see how you feel, and let us konw. Perhaps this is also a question you should bring up with your clients as well. What do they want?

I agree that you don't absolutely need barbells to do CF (you're not going to follow the main site WODs anyway, are you?), but I also do agree that they are a very key component, particularly in terms of skill training. I also think there's a chance that eventually you or your clients might get bored without them, but maybe that's not a bridge you have to cross yet in the near future.

I suggest contacting Greg Privatera, Erin Davidson or Steve Liberati of EvoFit to get their thoughts. They are currently doing outdoor workouts too.
Thanks Jeff.

I am slowly integrating new things into my Outdoor Strength & Conditioning Class (which is almost 4 years running now). Until I can find a good location for my box I am going to try not to scare away the regulars that I already have. The fact that I now have Kettlebells is exciting to most of the students. Until this point we have been using sand bags, BW exercises, and some giant PVC LOGS. To be honest, none of them even know what crossfit is even though I have been running my classes in the same kick ***, take names method as crossfit long before I knew what Crossfit was.

Barbells will come as soon as I have a facility. Until then KB's will have to do.
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Old 07-03-2008, 06:15 AM   #30
Dave Randolph
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Re: Afiliates who do not use Barbells?

Quote:
Originally Posted by Justin Rovtar View Post
Dave,

What kind of strength gains/limitations have you noticed using only KB's? Do you think most of your clients quickly reach a strength level where they are ready to move on to heavier barbell lifts?
Hi Justin. I've been spotty on surfing this week.


Most of my clients have greatly increased their strength in 6 months or less. Granted many "strength" gains, whether from kbs, barbells or anything else comes from neurological improvements & better technique.

I have some ladies that could barely snatch an 8k 1 year ok who can now snatch a 16 or 20k bell (at a bw of 125 up to about 145). My gf at 112 can snatch the 20k. My assistant trainer (female) who is about 6'2" and 145 or so can snatch the 28k, I have guys that never dreamed they could snatch the 40k now doing it for a few reps.

As for those who say that you can't get heavy enough doing kbs who can snatch the 48k? Not me. I can snatch the 40k for 5 reps L&R. I wont even try with a bar. I don't have the shoulder flexibility.
The most I've tried with a barbell clean is 135. I was practicing them last week. My elbows do not like them.

I do barbell DLs and like them. I don't do bb back squats because my shoulders don't like the position they are in holding the bar on the back. Yes I've had my form looked at.
Kbs are easier to teach (for me), more approachable by my clientele (people who have never touched any type of weight before) and require less space.

I can get 13 people in my space, about 1000 sq. ft of usable space, all doing the same thing at the same time. If I were using barbells at most I could get 6. I would also have to have rubber completely covering the floor. Now I have it where my squat rack it and one other place. The rest is the carpet that was down before I moved in

Kbs are a strength endurance tool, but for the majority of the population they can also be used for max strength, especially for overhead work.

I have client who can do 1 legged 2 kb deadlifts with 2x32 with no back problems, but I have taught him bb dl using 135 and even though his form was good, he complained about his lower back.
I taught them cleans with a bar & some don't like the stress it puts on the wrists and elbows, this was with an empty bar, and they were pretty adamant about not wanting to do more.

I've done Fran with kbs, I've done other "girls" with kbs too. But I mainly do longer workouts, many from ANthony Diluglio's Art of Strength (w/f/s www.artofstrength.com) His routines rock.
I also have a lot of workouts I've developed myself.

Now many of you are going to say I'm not doing CrossFit.
The definition of "doing" CrossFit (in a nutshell) is varied, tools, varied time, varied routines. That is what I practice & teach.
We use different tools:
Kbs, clubbells, sandbags, pullups, pushups, the Prowler, and, if I had an area outside, I'd have a tire to flip & sledges. I'm about to get some kegs to lift (I have to drain the beer first!).

We vary the time: Sometimes we do 21-15-9 routines, sometimes we do 2mins work 1min rest, sometimes we go heavy and do 5x5 work. Some days we do kb jerks and/or snatches for time.

So how is that not Crossfit?

To Zach: If you are "smashing" your forearms with kb cleans & snatches your form is WRONG. only beginners smash their forearms and not for long, because I'm adamant about proper technique

The weight of the kb resting on the forearm actually produces denser bone.

The CrossFit chick who broker her forearm doing cleans a while back could not have been doing them correctly


Double cleans with 2 40k (88lb) bells (about 176) is 6lbs over my body weight. I can do singles. I would not, at this time, attempt to do that with a bar

Doing front squats with 2x40 is tough. Mike Boyle among others believe the front squat is better than the back squat for developing athleticism.

KB cleans and snatches are not like the same lifts with a bar. I used to think they were until I attended a Level 1. The dead clean & the dead snatch have the same underlying components as the barbell versions. Torso up, drive through the heels, legs do the work explode up & get triple extension from ankles, knees & hips. (w/f/s http://www.iron-body.com/index.php/I...ad-Snatch.html )

Kbs develop uni-lateral strength and work more of the smaller muscles that don't normally get taxed much with a bar.

How heavy you need to go to be "heavy" is all relative
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