First Fitness Standard – 10 Components Of Fitness
There are ten recognized general physical skills. They are cardiovascular/respiratory endurance, stamina, strength, flexibility, power, coordination, agility, speed, balance, and accuracy. You are as fit as you are competent in each of these ten skills. A regimen develops fitness to the extent that it improves each of these ten skills.
Importantly, improvements in endurance, stamina, strength, and flexibility come about through training. Training refers to activity that improves performance through a measurable organic change in the body.
By contrast improvements in coordination, agility, balance, and accuracy come about through practice. Practice refers to activity that improves performance through changes in the nervous system.
Power and speed are adaptations of both TRAINING AND PRACTICE.
- Cardiovascular/respiratory endurance- The ability of body systems to gather, process, and deliver oxygen.
- Stamina – The ability of body systems to process, deliver, store, and utilize energy.
- Strength – The ability of a muscular unit, or combination of muscular units, to apply force
- Flexibility – The ability to maximize the range of motion at a given joint.
- Power - The ability of a muscular unit, or combination of muscular units, to apply maximum force in minimum time.
- Speed - The ability to minimize the time cycle of a repeated movement.
- Coordination - The ability to combine several distinct movement patterns into a singular distinct movement.
- Agility - The ability to minimize transition time from one movement pattern to another.
- Balance - The ability to control the placement of the body’s center of gravity in relation to its support base.
- Accuracy - The ability to control movement in a given direction or at a given intensity.
Second Fitness Standard – Variation
The essence of this model is the view that fitness is about performing well at any and every task imaginable. Picture a hopper loaded with an infinite number of physical challenges where no selective mechanism is operative, and being asked to perform fetes randomly drawn from the hopper. This model suggests that your fitness can be measured by your capacity to perform well at these tasks in relation to other individuals.
The implication here is that fitness requires an ability to perform well at all tasks, even unfamiliar tasks, tasks combined in infinitely varying combinations. In practice this encourages the athlete to disinvest in any set notions of sets, rest periods, reps, exercises, order of exercises, routines, periodization, etc. Nature frequently provides largely unforeseeable challenges; train for that by striving to keep the training stimulus broad and constantly varied.
Third Fitness Standard – Metabolic Pathways
There are three metabolic pathways that provide the energy for all human action. These “metabolic engines” are known as the phosphagen pathway, the glycolytic pathway, and the oxidative pathway.
- The first, the phosphagen, dominates the highest-powered activities, those that last less than about ten seconds.
- The second pathway, the glycolytic, dominates moderate-powered activities, those that last up to several minutes.
- The third pathway, the oxidative, dominates low-powered activities, those that last in excess of several minutes.
Total fitness, the fitness that CrossFit promotes and develops, requires competency and training in each of these three pathways or engines. Balancing the effects of these three pathways largely determines the how and why of the metabolic conditioning or “cardio” that we do at CrossFit.
Favoring one or two to the exclusion of the others and not recognizing the impact of excessive training in the oxidative pathway are arguably the two most common faults in fitness training.