• Denise Olson

Why CrossFit Kids?

“Our needs vary by the degree of intensity of the exercise, not kind.” Many of you have heard this quote by Greg Glassman. While the tendency is to think this references the importance of functional fitness for senior citizens and millennials alike, it stands true for children as well. CrossFit Kids is a method for teaching CrossFit to those under the age of 18. In class we emphasize good movement, which we know, over time, translates to physical literacy. This helps to decease sports-related injuries and improve performance. Additionally, science tells us that exercise is enormously beneficial to cognitive function, which means consistently adhering to the program can enhance academic achievement. SO; fewer injuries, improved performance in their sport(s) of choice, and gains in the classroom…all great things. But, in this day and age, where it seems not just many, but most kids are struggling in a social setting, I argue that CrossFit Kids does something even more important than anything I’ve mentioned. We are pulling kids away from the cell phones and tablets for 30-45 minutes and putting them in a setting where they’re required to follow directions, speak up for themselves, ask questions, think outside the box, take ownership and most importantly…get a little uncomfortable at times. This is where growth happens. We are never doing the same thing twice. They are asked to try new things and push themselves every single day, but always with the foundation of having fun. For many kids, CrossFit is their activity. They may not be on a team, or in a club. We foster this same camaraderie in class. Kids are taught to cheer their fellow athletes on, help each other move equipment, and at times-partner up to get the job done. These are life skills. While we’re combating childhood obesity and improving all-around health for children, class goes beyond physical fitness. If you’ve done CrossFit as an adult, I can almost guarantee you’ve seen more than just physical improvements. You’re happier. You work harder. You have more confidence. You’ve met new people. You’ll try something you never would have tried before you were a “crossfitter.” Our children can benefit from every single one of these things, just as much-if not more-than we do. So yes, CrossFit Kids helps to improve the fitness of our youth. But that’s just the tip of the iceberg. CrossFit Kids makes better people.

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