Jeff Martin of CrossFit Kids says young lifters require constant supervision. In this video, Martin discusses exactly how to keep kids safe and explains his guidelines for preschool, kids and teen classes. Based upon the research introduced by Dr. Jon Gary in his previous video Weightlifting and Kids, Martin shows how to run a safe and effective Kids program.
“If we know that a kid gets stronger from learning to do the movement correctly and not from loading, and we know that we can’t trust a 3-to-5-year-old kid to do the movement correctly and safely every time, why would we load them?” Martin asks the group of athletes attending his CrossFit Kids Seminar.
“We don’t load the kids,” he says of his preschoolers.
Loading is first introduced in kids classes. Martin describes his rules to keep everyone safe. In teen classes, weightlifting is carefully coached, and the athletes are organized by their ability to move well. This workout set-up constantly reinforces and rewards proper movement.
“I know that my adults from week to week will hold their position,” Martin says. “Kids won’t. (With) little kids it’s from rep to rep . Teens can have a great squat one week, come in the next week and it’s absolutely horrible,” he says.
According to Martin, that’s why constant vigilance on the part of the coach and slow steps forward are necessary for safety.
Additional audio: CrossFit Radio Episode 31 by Neil Anderson, originally aired Feb. 10, 2009.