Learning gymnastics skills can be frustrating, but Dave Durante explains why the return is well worth the investment.
Be patient and limit frustration.
These are the first two points on a list I share whenever I’m speaking about gymnastics to a new group of CrossFit athletes.
The reality of the situation is that if your goal is true mastery of gymnastics skills, the timelines are not measured in hours, days or weeks. They are measured in months, years and sometimes decades.
While this statement might be discouraging and frustrating for a lot of athletes, the primary focus should be the process itself, not the end result. Many athletes fail to realize the importance of learning and growing stronger on the road toward ultimate goals, and many stop trying because of perceived stagnation.
As athletes and coaches, always respect and take pride in the process of development. Gymnastics skills are not and should never be thought of as all or nothing. You don’t have a muscle-up or not have a muscle up. You have a work in progress somewhere between the first tentative attempt and absolute virtuosity. Every skill develops on a continuum, and small improvements have incredible value and transferability to other skills.
One of the most fundamental aspects of working on gymnastics and body-weight movements is the building of body awareness: the understanding of what the body is doing from fingertips to toes within space and time, whether the body is upright, inverted or somewhere in between. It’s about being able to control your body rather than having your body control you. Imagine what improved body awareness and control could do when applied to other CrossFit movements involving objects such as barbells and kettlebells.