Monday 080810 – Snatch


Hang Snatch 2-2-2-2-2, then:

For time:
400 M Run
21-15-9 Reps of:
Kbell Swing (53/36)
400 M Run

Post loads and times to comments. CrossFit Total is Tuesday, there will be make-ups available Saturday & Sunday, please try to make it in one of these days for the Total!

by Tyler Quinn

Scenario: You’re on your third and final set of back squats. You’re going for a triple at a weight you’ve never been able to get more than one of, but you’re feeling strong and confident this particular afternoon. You press out with the weight on your shoulders and step back from the rack, ready for your first of three efforts. Your first squat feels good. You’re certain you hit an appropriate depth, you made great efforts and were successful in keeping your torso in a vertical position, your drive was steady, and the weight moved fluidly from the hole back up to your starting position. One rep down. You drop in for your second rep and realize instantly that things are different: your calves flex as weight shifts forward on your toes, you feel your back drop forward and your hamstrings engage to counter-balance and compensate for deteriorating form. Your drive only amplifies the problem as your hips rise too soon and you find yourself executing a wildly inefficient and uncomfortable “good morning”. But you finish the rep all the same.

This is where things get sticky. Upon completion of rep number two, you find yourself slightly light-headed, very nervous, but still ambitious and determined enough to get that PR. You drop in for your third and final rep and recognize almost immediately that you don’t have the strength. The weight bottoms you out at the deepest part of your squat, tension is delivered to the knees, you’re caught in a slumped and completely powerless position and you’ve got no idea what to do.

If you’ve been here before, and if you know the feeling that comes with it, then you can probably understand why we’ve been placing such great emphasis on spotting each other in the last few weeks. Active spotting is a crucial part of our strength biased programming and we as coaches are dependent to some degree on the participation of lifters and non-lifters alike when serious weight is being moved. Serious, in the case, is a relative term, and we need to be aware as fellow CrossFitters that getting bottomed out, getting stuck in any position, can have lasting effects on our bodies and psyche as we go forward with our training.

What we mean by active spotting is more involved than what most people tend to think. Active spotting, as opposed to inactive, or passive spotting, means that the spotter is as engaged in the lift as the lifter is. First of all, active spotters need to be up close and personal the entire time the weight is off the rack. Standing at attention three feet away from the lifter does very little good when all it takes is a mili-second for a body to collapse. Being in close proximity to the lifter means that you can have your hands on the bar instantly, and this is the only way we want to do things at CF SP.

Furthermore, there is a psychological side to spotting. I personally, like to remind the lifter that they can do whatever they need to do to complete the rep, but that whether they are successful or fail, I will be there to get them out of trouble. I might tell a lifter I’m there for them three times in the course of a single squat. If it annoys the lifter, then they can tell you to stop, but knowing that they won’t ever get caught alone and in a potentially dangerous position drastically increases confidence and that confidence can greatly increase the likelihood of a successful rep.
Whether you’re one of two spotters, each manning a side of a barbell, or a single spotter guiding a squatter down and out from behind them, active spotting is essential to instilling confidence in athletes, and maintaining a safe training environment. The responsibility is on both spotter and lifter alike, however. And it would be remiss to imply that the lifter should simply expect a spotter to bail them out. If you’re lifting something heavy, it is as important to seek out and demand an active spotter before doing so, as it is to concentrate on proper form. Lifters have a responsibility to themselves and the others around them to make sure they are covered should a scenario like the one described above ever come to fruition. I would like to request that we all continue to improve on our level of involvement during lifting portions of our classes primarily in the form of responsible, active spotting, and positive communication between lifters and spotters alike. Keep up the good work, and happy training!

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