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Agility is the ability to minimize transition time from one movement pattern to another. On the surface you might think this is stuff like going from wallballs to burpees to box jumps very quickly, and while you wouldn’t be wrong in thinking that, it’s also not limited to that. Every complex movement you do has an agility component to it, and the more complex the movement, the more agility is required to do it well. This is important in CrossFit because, well, all we do are complex movements.

Take the squat clean for example. You start in a deadlift position, and quickly deadlift the barbell to your mid-thigh. Then you quickly switch from “deadlift” mode to “jump like hell” mode to put momentum and elevation on the barbell, giving it that split second of weightlessness when you reach full extension in your hips, knees and ankles. During that split second of weightlessness at full extension you lift your feet (both to move them from your jumping stance to your squat stance AND to pull your body down) and pull yourself down under the bar while flinging your elbows up, then down, then straight out in front of the bar, coiling your body tightly into the bottom of a front squat position, where you receive the bar on your shoulders all before it has a chance to fall back to the ground. Then you stand up with the bar racked squarely on your shoulders, and then turn to face the camera to make sure it was filming your next facebook video post.

If the transition between any one of those steps is too slow, you miss the lift. It’s as simple as that.

As a side note…how much agility is required to do a calf raise or a tricep press-down? Probably slightly more than would be required to defecate, though I doubt it.

A special thank you goes out to one of our new members (Don J.) who talked his friends at Clark’s Elioak Farm (in Ellicott City) into donating a big ass grass-fed steak to each one of our Paleo Challenge winners. If you’re interested in any of their ridiculously delicious (and healthy) products, check out their website for more information. I know Danielle and I will.

  • Tai-broom handle fun is like a softball! However, I will maintain professionalism until I see you next in the gym.

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