Powerlifting

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How Much Ya Bench?

By Hilary Achauer

In Powerlifting, Workouts

September 04, 2016

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Often forgotten in favor of push presses or jerks, the bench press can add variety to CrossFit workouts.

On April 22, 2004, Lynne Pitts followed her normal routine. She woke up and logged onto CrossFit.com to see the workout of the day.

The day’s challenge was 5 rounds for max reps of body-weight bench presses and pull-ups. When she saw the workout, Pitts knew she’d do well.

A competitive powerlifter in the late ’80s and early ’90s… Continue Reading

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You Don’t Know Squat

By Hilary Achauer

In Coaching, Olympic Lifts, Powerlifting

August 05, 2015

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CrossFit athletes sometimes look to squat programs to increase strength—but are they effectively targeting weaknesses or merely feeding the ego and sacrificing general physical preparedness?

The first squat program Aaron Straker tried was the three-week Smolov Jr. cycle in March 2014. His goal was to build strength after an Achilles rupture. The cycle was so successful Straker decided to try the full 13-week Smolov cycle later that same year.

“It just buried me,” said… Continue Reading

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No Rest for the Foolish

By Bill Starr

In Coaching, Olympic Lifts, Powerlifting

May 13, 2015

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Bill Starr addresses an element of strength training that’s too often disregarded by hard-charging athletes.

Editor’s note: Bill Starr completed this article before he passed away April 7, 2015, in Maryland.

There are three sides to the strength pyramid: training, nutrition and rest.

It takes time to learn how to do various exercises using proper technique, what exercises to do on which training days, what sets and… Continue Reading

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Bill Starr, 1938-2015

By Mike Warkentin

In CrossFit, Olympic Lifts, Powerlifting

April 10, 2015

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Longtime CrossFit Journal contributor and strength legend Bill Starr passes on at 77.

Bill Starr died April 7 in Maryland. He was 77.

Starr first contributed to the CrossFit Journal with the November 2008 article “Overhead Is Rising.” It was introduced as follows:

“This article is both an instructional piece on overhead lifting, as well as a history of the unfortunate demise of overhead lifting in most strength and conditioning programs.”

The lines… Continue Reading

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In Olympic Lifts, Powerlifting

October 06, 2014

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If your pre-workout prep consists of a cup of coffee and a few squats, Bill Starr has some advice for you.

As every Olympic lifter fully understands, doing full snatches and clean and jerks requires a high degree of flexibility in every part of the body. All the major muscle groups and corresponding attachments are involved in the two competitive lifts: shoulder girdle, back, and hips and legs. A lack of… Continue Reading

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Injury and Opportunity

By Bill Starr

In Medical/Injuries, Olympic Lifts, Powerlifting

September 17, 2014

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Smart athletes look at injuries as a chance to put in some extra work on the healthy parts of the body.

Anyone who trains seriously for any length of time is going to sustain an injury. This is simply a law of nature and no one, as of yet, has found a way to avoid it.

Even those who do fitness routines and use light weight for higher reps still get dings somewhere along the way. Then there are those… Continue Reading

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Hack It Up?

By Chris Cooper

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Chris Cooper examines belts, squat suits and knee wraps for CrossFit athletes.

This year at the CrossFit Games, athletes will bolster their courage with meditation, concentration, HTFU and sometimes prayer.

Some will also brace their backs with leather, their wrists with reinforced nylon or their asses with polyester briefs.

But should they?

Supportive gear—belts, wraps and physio tape—might help an athlete lift more weight, do more reps and… Continue Reading

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Bill Starr recommends a host of exercises to build a strong upper back and neck.

For those athletes who participate in contact sports, such as hockey, lacrosse, football and soccer, having a strong neck is an absolute must. It can mean the difference between getting a stinger in the neck after a head-on-head collision or being carried off the field and into the emergency room.

The sad… Continue Reading

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