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And so we come to the last (though certainly not least) of the 10 General Physical Skills – balance, which is the ability to control the placement of the body’s center of gravity in relation to its support base. But what exactly is a center of gravity? I’m glad you asked. It’s the average location of the weight of an object, which means that when you change your body position (like bending over or sitting down) your center of gravity changes. Now add a load (a fairly regular occurrence in CrossFit) and your center of gravity changes drastically – and the bigger the load, the bigger the change.

Our base of support is our feet (unless we’re playing twister), which are essentially two relatively small tripods (the heel and the inner and outer part of the ball of our foot) at the end of a couple of sticks (our legs) – not exactly an inherently stable system. Whenever our center of gravity moves outside those tripods, we fall over. The most stable way to control our center of gravity is to use as much of both tripods as equally as possible, right? I think so too.

Now back to balance. Picture this – you have two of those canes you’ve seen used by some elderly people – the kind with a handle at the top, a thin aluminum shaft, and three little rubber feet arranged in a triangle at the bottom. Two of the three rubber feet are about 4 inches apart, and the third is no more than about 8 or so inches from either of the other two. You are tasked with using those two canes to support an object 7 feet wide, with 100 lbs. on either end and weighs a total of about 250 lbs. Let me ask one question: Would you try to balance that 250 lbs. on the canes by tipping them forward slightly (or grossly) so that only two of the three little rubber feet are touching the ground, or would you make sure to use all three rubber feet on each cane?

My guess is that the dude on the bottom in today’s picture would use all three little rubber feet on each cane.

  • Mark.B

    Second workout looks like a killer… I think I can, I think I can. I think I can….

  • Tony Giampapa

    Found this blog the other day with the greatest name I’ve ever heard and it turns out its a Paleo recipe blog that this woman who loves Crossfit writes. Check it out

    Its called “Yum Yum Get Some”