In Medical/Injuries

January 28, 2010

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With several simple exercises, Daniel Christie believes you can create a routine that will improve both your posture and your CrossFit performance.

In Part 1 of “Tuning the CrossFit Athlete,” we discussed how common postural traits are evident in virtually every gym and CrossFit box worldwide.

Faulty posture known as “upper and lower crossed syndrome” can affect strength, stability and performance and negatively impact our ability to use ideal form during key CrossFit lifts.

Now we’ll show you how to improve your posture and improve performance through soft-tissue release techniques, focused stretches for commonly tight musculature, and gluteal and scapula-retractor activation exercises.

Foam rolling and active isolated stretching (AIS) are my personal techniques of choice to address upper and lower crossed syndrome. No fancy equipment is needed, and both techniques are relatively easy to incorporate into your CrossFit warm-up or do on rest days in front of your television. The entire foam-rolling, AIS and activation routine should take approximately 20 minutes.

These basic self-help techniques can be used to create a simple routine that will help prevent injuries and minimize current muscular aches and pain. Invest just 20 bucks in equipment and about 20 minutes of your time several times a week so you can maximize your WOD.

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5 Comments on “Part 2—Tuning the CrossFit Athlete”


wrote …

I noticed that under the "Active Isolated Stretching" header, it says "hold each stretch for a maximum of 2 seconds". Are we meant to do several rounds of 2 second holds of each stretch? Or is that a typo that is supposed to say 20 seconds?


replied to comment from Tom Ellison

Hi Tom,

That is not a typo. One of the principles behind active isolated stretching is that you keep the stretches very short to avoid engaging the body's stretch reflex. Many therapists will recommend repeating the stretch about 10 times.

That's a very short answer, but if you do a Web search on "active isolated stretching" you'll find a great deal of additional info from experts in the field.

CrossFit Journal


wrote …

Great article on Tuning the Athlete. I am a yoga instructor and Level 1 CF coach. I have years of experience in yoga and think that nearly everyone can benefit from just a few minutes of "Tuning". I know yoga has the reputation of being for sissies, granolas and new agers, but yoga can be a great workout as well, try HOT Yoga or POWER Yoga. If the CF community would practice just a couple of power yoga classes a week and learn a few of the common yoga pose the benefits would be immense.
Jason McCutcheon


wrote …

Danny, top article!

I may have mis-read but is the Psoas also a key muscle that needs some 'love'?

Or is it covered when rolling & stretching the 'quads'as labelled in your article?

Many thanks



wrote …

How about the bird dog and shoulder movements, how many times should someone repeat those or is it one of those things you should just 'feel?'

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