Crossfit Makes Cops Fit
4 March 2006
i had to put stephan's and lauren rochet's young son ethen in the article with his pix. this kid is going to great someday....awesome child!!!
CrossFit Makes Cops Fit
A few weeks ago, someone asked me how I would train cops to get into “survival shape”. I thought about it for 4 or 5 seconds (I’m embarrassed it took me so long) and said, “CrossFit.” That’s it? Yup.
CrossFit isn’t really a single method of training and that’s the genius behind it. CrossFit has adopted exercise methods from a variety of disciplines. Crossfit takes what works, adds a little dynamic spice (think thruster, wall ball and Fight Gone Bad), and gets rid of any fluff. The result is a highly efficient, highly effective way to train. And it just happens to be the perfect tool for training police officers for their job, and their very survival.
CrossFit provides a police officer with an extremely varied training stimulus. All the metabolic pathways are hit, with anaerobic (a.k.a.: combat) fitness taking priority. Numerous result-producing exercises, from deadlifts, cleans, and presses, to pull-ups, swings and thrusters are used to hammer all the muscle groups in realistic movement patterns. No isolation of the gastroc here my friends. Most importantly, CrossFit, through the Workout of the Day, is unpredictable, just like the real world. Basically, CrossFit throws an infinite number of challenging, incredibly effective workouts into a giant hopper and everyday one of these workouts gets pulled out. As Coach Glassman says, if you are truly Crossfit, it does not matter what workout pops out. A CrossFitter can handle the demands.
I can think of no better way to train a police officer because this unpredictability IS a police officer’s world. At any moment, a police officer can be dispatched to a call that results in a foot pursuit through an urban obstacle course, culminating in a grappling session with no rules. He or she might have to fight off numerous attackers for several minutes before help arrives. The possibilities for trouble are as limitless as the bad guys malevolence or stupidity. The crazy calls come out of nowhere, at the beginning of the shift or at the end, after one minute in the car or after 11 hours of driving in circles. There is no warning or warmup. The only way to be ready for these challenges is to be physically and mentally prepared to handle anything. That’s what CrossFit does.
Speaking of mental preparation, this is one of CrossFit’s most potent attributes. Done right, these workouts are as brutally intense as a street fight, without the inherent danger. Hammer out Fran in four minutes or Helen in eight and its hurtin’ time. Such workouts build a mental capacity to push through pain and fatigue. “One more rep” or “Just a few more seconds” are thoughts that push the CrossFitter to continue. This is great training for a police officer. This NEVER, EVER say die attitude will keep an officer alive. It will keep him or her going when a sucker punch knocked out some teeth, when pepper spray went wrong or a couple of whackos are going for the gun. Mental toughness and tenacity are keys for survival and they are developed and honed by CrossFit workouts.
Finally, CrossFit fits in perfectly with a policeman’s schedule. The workouts are of relatively short duration and a variety of day on/off systems can be used. CrossFit allows an officer to get the training needed while taking care of other pressing needs in his or her limited free time. CrossFit workouts also allow for a little supplemental practice or specialization before or after the workout. For example, an officer who wants to improve his snatch technique may incorporate a few sets into his warmup or cool down. CrossFit workouts, being short by nature, allow for this extra work to address specific concerns.
So if a police officer (or soldier, or fireman) asks you how to train for the job, just say CrossFit and point them in the right direction. Tell them to take the time to learn the exercises, learn the philosophy and then start hitting the WOD’s. They will be thanking you soon enough. (Please note, CrossFit is basically the way the bad guys train in jail, so the good guys better keep up. But if your felon friend asks you how you got in such good shape, just tell him: “Thighmaster”.)
CrossFit is not only about results, but supreme results. To paraphrase Coach Glassman’s ingenious black box theory, if you throw a cop and CrossFit into the box, shake it up with some WOD’s, then Superman comes out. And that’s what we need on our crazy streets. Good luck and stay safe.
(If you live in Orange County, check out CrossFit Huntington Beach!!!)