In “Potential,” Patrick Cummings presents his poetic meditations on how women in CrossFit are transforming the definitions of strength and femininity, opening up new possibilities for women in general.
As women push their limits during workouts, he suggests, they become role models for other women seeking to discover what they can do.
“We can discover evidence of our own potential inside the actions of another,” he says.
He further underscores the intertwining of femininity and strength as he explains that the barbell “stands for everything a boy is taught to chase—power and bravery—but in thousands of chalk-filled gyms, women are killing the preconceived conception of their own frailty.”
In the poem’s refrain, Cummings makes an assertion proven daily in CrossFit gyms around the world: “Toughness knows not gender.”
Video by Patrick Cummings.
Additional reading: “Frailty, Thy Name Is Woman?” by Hilary Achauer, published Oct. 19, 2015.