News / Health

CrossFit: Hot Global Fitness Trend Strengthens Dominance

CrossFit: Hot Global Fitness Trend Strengthens Dominancei
|| 0:00:00
...  
🔇
X
March 13, 2014 8:01 PM
CrossFit started in the U.S. in the 1970s and is quickly becoming one of the fastest growing fitness concepts worldwide. The number of affiliated gyms has doubled every two years, and there are now CrossFit gyms from South America to Europe to Asia. VOA's Jeff Swicord Reports.
CrossFit: Hot Global Fitness Trend Strengthens Dominance
Jeff Swicord
What started in a California garage in the 1970s is quickly becoming one of the fastest growing fitness concepts worldwide. It's called CrossFit and is a method of whole-body functional fitness. It's used by the U.S. Marines, professional sports teams, fire departments, and police forces. The number of affiliated gyms has doubled every two years, and there are now CrossFit gyms from South America to Europe to Asia.

CrossFit is known as one of the most grueling workouts in the fitness world. Each week, CrossFit members flock to more than 8,500 affiliated gyms worldwide.   

CrossFit incorporates interval training, weight lifting, gymnastics and other disciplines. Trainer Kate Garufi at District CrossFit in Washington said the goal is to perform functional, everyday movements, at high intensity, to achieve better muscular strength, cardio endurance, and flexibility.

“So you can have powerlifting movements, you can have Olympic lifting movements, you can have body weight stuff," said Garufi. "You can have what we call single modal, running, rowing, swimming, anything that can be thrown into a workout with CrossFit,” she said.

Workouts of the day, or WODS, are usually posted on a board and exercises performed in a group setting. Results are measured in time taken to complete rounds and number of repetitions.

CrossFit Enthusiast Hank Mason, a former soccer player, said, "If you were to complete a workout, say, two months ago and you got five minutes, and then you're re-tested again today, tomorrow or whenever, and you got four minutes, that is a pretty concrete indication that you are fitter.”

Not all CrossFitters are elite athletes. Samantha Rapoza has been doing CrossFit for about six weeks with the goal to slim down and get stronger. “I think there are so many things that I didn’t know I could do, and I am already making progress that I didn’t expect to make as quickly as I made it. So I think I am going to have to revise my goals a little bit,” she said.

There has also been criticism of CrossFit on some Internet fitness forums. The most common is the susceptibility to injury.  

Former figure model Andrea Ferry is an experienced CrossFit Athlete. She said injuries are avoided through good coaching. “It is up to the coach to make sure that it (workout) is scaled for that 67-year-old person like my dad, or someone like myself, to make sure they are moving properly with good technique, good form, that they can handle the weight and they are pacing themselves throughout the workout.”

Thirty percent of CrossFit gyms are now outside the United States, throughout North and South America, Africa, Asia, Europe, Australia and New Zealand.

You May Like

UN Ambassador Power Highlights Plight of Women Prisoners

She launches the 'Free the 20' campaign, aimed at profiling women being deprived of their freedom around the world More

Satellite Launch Sparks Spectacular Light Show

A slight delay in a satellite launch lit up the Florida sky early this morning More

Fleeing IS Killings in Syria, Family Reaches Bavaria

Exhausted, scared and under-nourished, Khalil and Maha's tale mirrors those of thousands of refugees from war-torn countries who have left their homes in the hopes of finding a better life More

Featured Videos

Your JavaScript is turned off or you have an old version of Adobe's Flash Player. Get the latest Flash player.
Nobel Prize Winner Malala Talks to VOAi
X
August 31, 2015 2:17 AM
Nobel Peace Prize winner Malala Yousafzai met with VOA's Deewa service in Washington Sunday to talk about women’s rights and unveil a trailer for her new documentary. VOA's Katherine Gypson has more.
Video

Video Nobel Prize Winner Malala Talks to VOA

Nobel Peace Prize winner Malala Yousafzai met with VOA's Deewa service in Washington Sunday to talk about women’s rights and unveil a trailer for her new documentary. VOA's Katherine Gypson has more.
Video

Video War, Drought Threaten Iraq's Marshlands

Iraq's southern wetlands are in crisis. These areas are the spawning ground for Gulf fisheries, a resting place for migrating wildfowl, and source of livelihood for fishermen and herders. Faith Lapidus has more.
Video

Video Colombians Flee Venezuela as Border Crisis Escalates

Hundreds of Colombians have fled Venezuela since last week, amid an escalating border crisis between the two countries. Last week, Venezuelan President Nicolas Maduro ordered the closure of a key border crossing after smugglers injured three Venezuelan soldiers and a civilian. The president also ordered the deportation of Colombians who are in Venezuela illegally. Zlatica Hoke reports.
Video

Video Rebuilding New Orleans' Music Scene

Ten years after Hurricane Katrina inundated New Orleans, threatening to wash away its vibrant musical heritage along with its neighborhoods, the beat goes on. As Bronwyn Benito and Faith Lapidus report, a Musicians' Village is preserving the city's unique sound.
Video

Video In Russia, Auto Industry in Tailspin

Industry insiders say country relies too heavily on imports as inflation cuts too many consumers out of the market. Daniel Schearf has more from Moscow.
Video

Video Scientist Calls Use of Fetal Tissue in Medical Research Essential

An anti-abortion group responsible for secret recordings of workers at a women's health care organization claims the workers shown are offering baby parts for sale, a charge the organization strongly denies. While the selling of fetal tissue is against the law in the United States, abortion and the use of donated fetal tissue for medical research are both legal. VOA’s Julie Taboh reports.
Video

Video Next to Iran, Climate at Forefront of Obama Agenda

President Barack Obama this week announced new initiatives aimed at making it easier for Americans to access renewable energy sources such as solar and wind. Obama is not slowing down when it comes to pushing through climate change measures, an issue he says is the greatest threat to the country’s national security. VOA correspondent Aru Pande has more from the White House.
Video

Video Arctic Draws International Competition for Oil

A new geopolitical “Great Game” is underway in earth’s northernmost region, the Arctic, where Russia has claimed a large area for resource development and President Barack Obama recently approved Shell Oil Company’s test-drilling project in an area under U.S. control. Greg Flakus reports.
Video

Video Philippine Maritime Police: Chinese Fishermen a Threat to Country’s Security

China and the Philippines both claim maritime rights in the South China Sea.  That includes the right to fish in those waters. Jason Strother reports on how the Philippines is catching Chinese nationals it says are illegal poachers. He has the story from Palawan province.
Video

Video China's Spratly Island Building Said to Light Up the Night 'Like A City'

Southeast Asian countries claim China has illegally seized territory in the Spratly islands. It is especially a concern for a Philippine mayor who says Beijing is occupying parts of his municipality. Jason Strother reports from the capital of Palawan province, Puerto Princesa.
Video

Video Ages-old Ice Reveals Secrets of Climate Change

Ice caps don't just exist at the world's poles. There are also tropical ice caps, and the largest sits atop the Peruvian Andes - but it is melting, quickly, and may be gone within the next 20 years. George Putic reports scientists are now rushing to take samples to get at the valuable information about climate change locked in the ice.

VOA Blogs