Why should future soldiers prepare only by following a CrossFit program?

Pourquoi les futurs militaires ne doivent se préparer uniquement en suivant un programme de CrossFit ? - Phil Team

CrossFit VS Military Training

CrossFit is an enjoyable activity for many athletes, which can give practitioners a physical mover.

There are crossovers between military and CrossFit training, for example, in events where candidates take advantage of CrossFit grip strength techniques, such as using pull-up bars or dumbbells in their training.

However, candidates who wish to become military should be informed that CrossFit training may not be the best solution for reasons such as those listed below.

To learn more about CrossFit training and follow a program for free, click here.


Anaerobic exercise

At the top of the list of skills and qualities that military candidates must have is aerobic fitness.

While CrossFit focuses more on anaerobic training, training for future entrants should focus on longer duration , submaximal intensity training for extended periods of time combined with short bursts of activity. at high intensity.

The training of athletes selected for special operations should be primarily aerobic and strength training, as opposed to primarily anaerobic training.

Power Building

The military must be strong. They have to lift heavy, often oddly shaped objects that require constant, slow effort over a period of time.

This differs from CrossFit , where athletes focus more on training to become powerful. Although the terms "strength" and "power" are often used interchangeably, the difference is that power is all about speed and the exertion of explosive force.

Power is a lower priority for Soldiers, and candidates should be aware that they should focus on building strength in their training.

While the initial aptitude tests of conventional military servicemen can be passed without having to participate in force-based activities, special forces candidates often do not train adequately for the selection process and fail. when it comes to lifting heavy objects.


Unsupervised movements

Military activities include three movements that are not often used in Crossfit workouts:

  • the race,
  • swimming,
  • carrying a load for long periods of time.

However, when CrossFit activities use these movements, for example in regional championships or CrossFit games, they are not consistently dosed in training or competition.

Preferably, athletes training for Special Operations selection will use these movements consistently, developing them steadily and gradually over time.

"Touch-and-Go" drive style

During the training, the candidates use activities to work resistance that are exercised over a long period, such as rope climbing, the farmer walk or which consists of carrying objects of odd shapes and heavy loads.

This differs from CrossFit, where activities are primarily focused on quick, repetitive "touch and go" exercises, usually with lower loads, or near-maximum Olympic lifts.

The " grinder " style of training allows soldiers to adapt to their environment and use improvised tools that may be nearby. It also helps build endurance, such as carrying bulky objects and heavy loads for long periods of time.


Single leg movements

Single leg exercises are very beneficial for candidates as they are used in a large number of events that athletes will be required to compete in.

For example, step ups, forward lunges, leg curls, and rear high leg curls are all common single-leg exercises.

CrossFit, on the other hand, focuses primarily on two-legged movements, such as front and back squats, deadlifts, squats and squats, which are not as beneficial for candidates , even if they have always their place.

It is best to train one leg at a time , strengthening each leg and proprioception (balance). Single movements, as opposed to bilateral movements, can also help prevent muscle imbalances and left-right asymmetries that can drain muscle efficiency.

Extension and flexion of the trunk

Soldiers are often required to perform asymmetrical drills , with the obliques (which hug the side of the trunk) working to keep their torso straight and controlled. In CrossFit however, the exercises focus heavily on trunk extension and flexion.

Whether it's deadlifts or sit-ups, these exercises are good for Crossfit, but they don't prepare the athlete for the asymmetrical movements that are necessary for military training.

Sports training

While CrossFit athletes generally train to improve their physical condition or to develop their skills in order to compete in CrossFit competitions, the military must think about something other than training for the sport.

For example, as part of their job, special ops athletes are not required to perform a power snatch on demand. Candidates for the military must plan their training program carefully and consider what modalities are best for them.

For example, timed running sessions are important for improving fitness, but more technical or gymnastic movements from CrossFit would not be as important.

Candidates should be aware that they are not just preparing for sport , but training for a role that requires a high level of physical fitness.

Short-lived events

During Special Forces selection, it is common for candidates to perform cyclical, sustained drills, daily for 1-3 weeks.

This is to be compared to CrossFit competitions which last only one day for most, but up to several days for high level athletes. It is best for athletes training for Special Operations selection to use sustained exercise methods to build up their endurance levels.


Prescribed activities

CrossFit uses sets of prescribed activities with specific durations and tasks, which allows athletes to often be aware of the challenges they face, and then be able to measure their progress in the prescribed activity using a "rep or no rep" method.

Military selection differs in that candidates are unable to predict the exercises they will face and the timing of those activities. Candidates must remain motivated throughout the duration of the tasks, demonstrating consistency and responding well to the various challenges imposed.

Therefore, it is best for candidates to focus on resistance exercises when training, repeating activities over an extended period of time.

CrossFit has many benefits for the athlete. However, when it comes to military training , candidates should carefully plan their training regimen to account for the limitations of CrossFit, from the duration of the event to the differences in the nature of CrossFit movements.

When specific exercises such as touch-and-go or anaerobic activities are ideal for CrossFit athletes, while "combat athletes" should focus on grinder-type activities and sustained levels of exercise .


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