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Everyman's Gymnastics: The Seminar by Roger Harrell - CrossFit Journal

In Gymnastics/Tumbling

September 01, 2005

PDF Article

On Aug 14, 2005, about twenty participants and several observers descended on the Novato Gymnastics Center in Novato, California, for a CrossFit gymnastics seminar. The group was widely mixed, with ages ranging from under twenty to mid-fifties and with backgrounds that included Olympic skiers, Navy SEALS, non-competitive athletes, and folks at various stages of their CrossFit journey, from longtime veterans to beginners. Body weights and sizes ranged dramatically as well. The attending group embodied the axiom that CrossFit is for everyone--and, in the course of the seminar, they demonstrated that gymnastics can be too.

At the seminar we--men and women, large and small, kids and adults--worked on floor, pommel horse, parallel bars, vault, beam, rings, and high/ uneven bars. The focus of the seminar was to learn proper progressions and teaching techniques for the foundational gymnastics movements and skills so important to CrossFit's programming and effectiveness. Learning these fundamental skills properly from the beginning will facilitate safe and incremental progress to more advanced gymnastics skills.

Early in the seminar, everyone spent some time learning to fall properly. Gymnastics is considered a sport with high risk, but learning proper falling techniques reduces the risk dramatically. In fact, in most gymnastics programs, injury rates are lower than in many supposedly "safer" sports. This is due to proper progressions and learning how to fall--skills that are enormously beneficial outside the gym as well.

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