“The total is more than the sum of its parts.”
In CrossFit, that old adage holds true and in fact forms the basis for much of what we do. While certain methods of training treat the body as a collection of parts, CrossFitters train the body as a whole through functional compound movements. You can certainly break a squat down into agonists, antagonists and synergists working to achieve core stability and hip and knee extension, but doing so may not do much for fitness.
“It’s a false reductionism,” Greg Glassman says of this approach. “I lose the essence of the damn thing.”
In front of a chalkboard in his garage, Coach takes a closer look at the shortcomings of isolating various parts of the body and what a cohesive, whole-body approach to training can do for health and fitness.
Additional reading: Functionality and Wallball by Greg Glassman, published Aug. 1, 2003.