Whether you are currently doing crossfit, or you just know about it, you can’t help but notice that it takes the jack of all trades approach. Crossfit involves a lot of different areas of fitness with the emphasis on functionality.
I have heard guys who primarily do strength training or bodybuilding routines (though they are not bodybuilders) point this fact out. That I am not mastering any one aspect of fitness. First, I say to these guys, if you feel this way you have missed the entire reason for crossfit‘s existence. Second, I say, so what you are saying to me is that I am better than you at EVERYTHING minus one activity??
This normally puts them at a loss for words because it is true. You could make the argument that a triathlete is better than me at swimming, cycling, and running…but are they? Isn’t a triathlete just better at endurance than I am (one thing). If you disagree than I am better at power clean, snatch, bench press, squats…etc than the triathlete. Or am I just better at strength. It all depends on how you would like to view it. Most people would like to view it through their own lens.
Crossfit aims at getting you better at ten recognized general physical skills:
You could match skill specific sports with each of these. I think all sports take each of these skills to some degree. However, just because it takes these skills does not mean you have mastered fitness.
Here is a good way to look at it. Take each of these skills and put which sport or activity would be the best, or would max out at least one of the skills listed above. For instance a marathon runner would probably have the cardiovascular/respiratory endurance category maxed out. That is the person we will use as the benchmark for that category. We would use a powerlifter in the strength category as that benchmark. You see where I am going with this.
Below is a sample of what different athletes look like. I left speed out of the equation because some people take speed too literal, as in sprinting distance, or who is faster. So I do not want any arguments over that. This was not a scientific experiment. Just a simple breakdown of what each athlete is training for. Gymnasts are pretty well rounded but are lacking in some areas. Runners and lifters are only good at what they train for the most part. Someone training with CrossFit is looking to be well rounded in every category but is not looking to max any category out. Keep in mind many crossfitters come from a specific sports background and never truly leave their comfort zone.