February 04, 2010
Many CrossFit athletes start with a PVC pipe before jumping to a training, women’s or full-size Olympic bar. Inventor and CrossFitter R. Don Hollinger introduces one more step to help smooth the transition from PVC to metal.
After a good warm-up, I overhead squatted 400—a PR. I’ll never forget that day.
An OHS of 400 isn’t bad for a 62-year-old who has been CrossFitting for about a year. One little detail is missing, however. While the reader might think the “400” was pounds, it was actually ounces, which converts to 25 lb. Well, it was a lot for me.
The piece of equipment that made this humble PR possible was a 5-lb. Olympic barbell I made out of common hardware or home-improvement-store parts. Even a naked Olympic barbell at 45 lb. was way too much for me, so I solved this predicament by creating a “stepping stone” barbell that has the same basic characteristics as the full Olympic bar without the high weight. I call it the “Hyperlite Bar.”
The Hyperlite Bar loaded with two 10-lb. bumpers and 40 lb. of metal plates (65 lb. total) can be dropped from the overhead position without damage to the bar. After a great effort, a big, crashing barbell bounce is a just reward. Sixty-five pounds is the max needed on the Hyperlite because one can then move to the 45-lb. Olympic bar with two 10-lb. bumper plates.