Hey DogTown! I am new to your box and super excited to be part of this community (and equally pumped to be blogging for you from time to time!). I’ve been CrossFitting officially for about 6 years and about 1 year many moons ago unknowingly. My trainer at the time was Level 1 certified (I just never realized!) It is a new year so let’s all crush it together!
I have legit been wanting to take a dedicated CrossFit gymnastic class my entire CrossFit life. I would have joined DogTown regardless if they offered just regularly scheduled workouts, but seeing the gymnastics on the calendar for Thursday nights was like the cherry on top. It is a rare gem to find around L.A. Plus extra bonus points having Dusty to coach it as his reputation in the gymnastics world is no secret.
I know for many CrossFitters, the focus is on lifting and being lightning fast, but gymnastics is as much of the equation as anything else. Gymnastics teaches us body awareness and really concentrating on engaging the right muscles at the right time. Getting stronger in lifts helps with gymnastics and vice versa. When you conquer a skill like a pull-up or pistol, it will be as euphoric as when you back squat twice your body weight.
I took my first gymnastics class and it was AMAZING. I have wanted to add a muscle up to my bag of tricks for ages, and I really believe it actually will happen simply by committing to one extra hour a week.
Gymnastic skills can be very technical. When you are doing gymnastics in a WOD, you are most likely focused on getting through the reps versus thinking about form and technique. You absolutely can practice them in regular class (and you should), but having that extra dedicated time will make a world of difference. Being able to break movements down and doing skill work are the details that will take gymnastics to the next level. Plus, it is much less of a pressure situation which only increases your success with being all gymnasty.
I know that for many, gymnastics can be intimidating or terrifying. For example, the idea of doing a hand stand is scary. “What if I fall?” The truth is, you probably will, but it is really not a big deal. The fear of falling is worse than falling itself. Trust me. I’ve collapsed doing many drills and have had reps where I have not been able to push back up on an HSPU (and consequently toppled over). Practice makes perfect though, and the more comfortable you get with being upside down and being aware of how your body is moving (or should be moving) will get you to do things you never thought you would. Which is the beauty of CrossFit.
And for anyone who is intimidated to go to Gymnastics class, well, there is no need to be. Everyone seems to be at different levels with different goals. It was a fun, relaxed, supportive group and the perfect safe space to be getting upside down and all around.
I plan to make it my regular Thursday night and I hope to see you all there!