CrossFit is a great sport to help boost confidence, improve athletic performance, and get healthier.
While it can seem, at first, that CrossFit is a sport for the young, with all its fast movements, gymnastics moves, and heavy lifting, CrossFit is great for people of any age, no matter their goals.
Why CrossFit Is Great for Women of All Ages
Many people, women included, join CrossFit to get healthier.
Whether “healthier” means losing weight, gaining muscle, increasing endurance, or improving flexibility, it’s a great thing to do something for yourself and work on your fitness.
Here are 5 ways CrossFit is helping women of all ages get healthier:
It’s Scaleable to Your Level Right Now
CrossFit is infinitely scaleable to your individual fitness and skill level.
If you can’t run a full mile, you can scale that down to a half mile. Or, if you can’t run at all, you can walk, bike, or row. For those who can’t do pull-ups, jumping pull-ups, negative pull-ups, banded pull-ups, and ring rows are all great options depending on abilities.
Every single movement in CrossFit can be scaled to meet your individual fitness level, right where you are right now.
Just because you see a movement on the board that you can’t do, that doesn’t mean you shouldn’t show up for class.
Instead, show up, find a way to scale that still is challenging for you, and realize that, in a few months’ time, that scaled option is way too easy for you.
You could walk into CrossFit on your first day barely able to do any physical activity, but you still have the opportunity to get a great workout.
You Get Hand-Holding
Part of what keeps a lot of people from making any sorts of steps into a gym is that they don’t know what to do, and a gym is an intimidating environment for someone who’s never been.
Think about your first time inside any gym, CrossFit or otherwise: There was all sorts of equipment that you didn’t know how to use, and people everywhere who seemed as if they had it all figured out. Chances are you just spent some time on a treadmill or the recumbent bike and called it a day.
In CrossFit, you’re guided along the way for every step, whether you’re a newbie or have been CrossFitting for years.
The workouts are all planned for you, and the coach shows you how to perform each movement. If you need scaling options, the coach can walk you through those. Your form gets corrected along the way, essentially giving you a personal trainer-type experience.
This individualized attention is key to helping athletes learn the proper form for each movement to avoid injury, and giving them the confidence to stick with working out well into the future.
When working out at a traditional gym, you don’t have someone cheering you on to finish your workout – Unless you count that person who really wants to “work in” on the machine you’re using.
In CrossFit, you get a built-in cheering section. From the coach to your fellow athletes, everyone cheers everyone else on.
If you’re the last one to finish, the cheers just get louder!
This community atmosphere, where you truly feel as if everyone is pulling for you even when you’re modifying the WOD or are slower than everyone else, is a key aspect of the CrossFit community. And if you feel as if you’ve got a group of people who want you to do well and are there to encourage you, you’re more likely to come back every day, helping you get healthier.
It’s As Intense As You Want It to Be
If you’re new to working out and getting healthier, any sort of physical activity is better than none. But for many people looking to seriously make a change, more is better.
With CrossFit, you can get both experiences even within the same class.
Feeling as if you want to really challenge yourself on the strength portion of the workout but plan to take things a little easier for the WOD? No problem! You can load up your barbell for the heavy lifts but deload and scale the WOD movements.
If you’re really wanting to work up a sweat, you can push yourself to go harder and faster, or heavier and more intense, to get a major workout in, there’s that option, too.
No matter your age, skill level, fitness level, or desired workout result, you can customize the workout to meet your needs without impacting anyone else’s workout.
Improves Your Mental Toughness
Oftentimes, getting through a tough WOD is as much a mental game as it is a physical one. Are you really going to fall over if you finish that extra few reps? It’s unlikely.
Learning to come up against our personal obstacles and then overcoming them is a skill that women of all ages need to develop and hone.
While we may be great at overcoming obstacles in our personal and professional lives, pushing our bodies to their absolute limit and then going even harder is a game many of us don’t play that often.
In CrossFit, you’ll push yourself to that edge and beyond multiple times a month. And once you start to see that you’re really actually pretty good at pushing yourself past that limit, it will get easier and you’ll just find another new, even more challenging limit to test.
What about you? How does CrossFit help you get healthier?
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Michelle Tipsword is a professional writer who tried CrossFit on a whim in May 2019 and hasn’t looked back since. When she’s not writing or at the box, she can be found with her husband, kids, or cats, usually drinking coffee.