British Army veteran Mike Burgess dedicated himself to becoming fit. The 42-year-old lives with post-traumatic stress disorder but says he doesn’t let it define who he is. Drawn to CrossFit by its connection to the military, Burgess was intrigued when he saw the results CrossFit produces. In this six-part series, follow the trials and triumphs that go along with “Building Burgess.”
In Part 1, Burgess discusses his desire to improve his life with Brett… Continue Reading
In October 2012, Donnie Savella suffered an injury that eventually led to paralysis of his legs. He set a goal to get back into competitive shape by 2015. This year, he competed in the CrossFit Games Open, one year ahead of schedule.
“One day I was fit, I was working out, and the next day I was in total paralysis. The reality of being in paralysis was frightening for me,” Savella says.
After completing his four-month physical-therapy… Continue Reading
Athletes in wheelchairs are experts at adapting. Now they’re joining CrossFit affiliates in growing numbers.
Chris Stoutenberg fractured three thoracic vertebrae falling from his friend’s balcony on June 18, 1997. Paralyzed from the waist down, “Stouty” woke up with metal rods in his spine and a huge hole in his life: Sports, at which he’d always excelled, seemed gone forever. He was 19.
Despite the injury, Stoutenberg fought to recover, copying the exercises… Continue Reading
After 30-year-old Brittany Gill was diagnosed with cervical cancer, she did what any CrossFit athlete would: She used her chemotherapy IV pole for an overhead squat.
“I didn’t realize at the time how dangerous that particular thing was,” Gill says.
Chemotherapy drugs can be extremely harmful to skin, so throwing a pole overhead definitely wasn’t the best idea. But Gill started a trend. To stave off the boredom of seven hours of chemo, she began… Continue Reading
Jian Jackson was born healthy. At about 5 months old, she had a high fever at the orphanage where she lived in China. Four days later, she wasn’t moving her legs anymore.
“By then they took her to a doctor, but it was too late,” explains Stacie Jackson, Jian’s adoptive mother. “The doctors here think it was polio.”
The 8-year-old suffered nerve damage to both legs, and she now uses her hands to move, with her legs and feet… Continue Reading
Can movement serve as therapy for kids on the autism spectrum?
When you’re the parent of a child on the autism spectrum, you’re used to your child moving, but often in a manner that may not be in sync with the rest of society. In this special world, there are arm-flappers and toe-dancers and body-rockers, among others.
I have a sprinter.
My son, who is now 14 years old, technically hits some end of… Continue Reading
As researchers start to close in on the causes of autism, some CrossFit gyms are testing treatment theories that suggest exercise can help.
(Corrects to clarify that some children with Asperger’s, not all, are averse to touch.)
Living with autism is about making connections.
Since the earliest diagnosis of autism in 1911, parents have searched for ways to relate to children whose symptoms often make interaction challenging. With no cure for the developmental disorder… Continue Reading
Five years ago, Ken Smithmier found CrossFit. Then it found his hospital. Andréa Maria Cecil reports.
After 59-nine-year-old hospital CEO Ken Smithmier got hooked on CrossFit training, he traveled to Indianapolis, Ind., for a CrossFit Level 1 Certificate Course in April 2009.
When he got back, he called a lunch meeting with the trainers involved in Decatur Memorial Hospital’s community wellness program. He told them about CrossFit.
Soon after, CrossFit… Continue Reading