What Makes a CrossFit Box a Home

What makes a box a home?

A box is not just any place where you train or live. A box must have certain characteristics which make it a home:

It has to be your own house, but not necessarily your actual home. You don’t need to share the same walls with other people. Your neighbors might think so, but they are free to do what they want with their property (and maybe even live there).

You can use the space inside your box however you like. If you’re living in a box, then you probably won’t need all those extra rooms at your parent’s house. You could put them to good use somewhere else!

The space inside the box must be suitable for habitation. You cannot just turn up and start using it as storage room or something similar. That would be illegal!

Your box must be convenient for you. You cannot expect your friends to come over if you aren’t inviting them.

If you really want to live in a box, then it’s time to get rid of some stuff from your house. Maybe you’ll sell some things or rent out others spaces in your house. But before doing that, let’s see what kind of boxes are available in our area!

Crossfit boxes in your area

Nowadays, there are so many crossfit boxes available that it can be hard to choose one. They also tend to change hands and merge with one another on a regular basis. Let’s see what your options are:

The old school box is the kind of place you probably grew up with. There are some around, but they tend to be a bit outdated and run-down. Some are not much better than glorified sheds.

What Makes a CrossFit Box a Home - at GYMFITWORKOUT

You might have to put in some work yourself.

The traditional box is a lot nicer than the old school ones. It has everything you would expect from a modern training facility. They may have had some equipment upgrades along the way and got a fresh coat of paint, but other than that they haven’t changed much.

The non-traditional box is something different. It might be a warehouse with some equipment and a cage. They tend to have a lot of open space which isn’t suitable for training, but you can get by with only a bar and a few rings.

Best home crossfit equipment for your home

It’s time to transform your living space into your very own home gym! Of course, you may already have all of the necessary equipment at home. But let’s assume you don’t own any at all or not enough.

No worries, there is plenty of stuff you can buy or build yourself.

The list below contains all you’ll need to get started in a short amount of time. But don’t think you can just buy the stuff and hope for the best! You’ll have to put in some work on your own as well.

The list below starts with the bare minimum equipment and goes all the way up to a complete home gym for crossfit enthusiasts.

What Makes a CrossFit Box a Home - GYM FIT WORKOUT

The bare minimum

If you’re just starting out and don’t have much money, then this is the place to be. You can get started with only these pieces of equipment and still get a good workout.

Barbell and weights set

Rings

Hill or rower

MMF ball

Plyo boxes or med-light sandbags

Just be creative and have fun while you’re at it!

The essentials

This is where you’ll find all the basics. Barbell, weights and a rower is all you need to get strong and in shape. You can make do with the MMF ball if you don’t have access to a real medball.

You will also need to pick up chalk, wrist wraps and shoes at some point. These are optional right now, but essential if you plan on taking your training to the next level.

What Makes a CrossFit Box a Home - GymFitWorkout

The home gym

This is what you could call the ultimate home gym. Some people will have everything in here and some might be missing a bench. But if you got all of this, then you can do just about everything in the Crossfit Games workouts.

As with everything else, feel free to get creative and change things up every now and then. Just make sure you log your workouts so you can track your progress!

Crossfit Training

There are two different kinds of crossfit training used by crossfit athletes. The first one is more like weight lifting and involves explosive and powerful movements. The second one is called met-cons which stands for metabolic conditioning.

This usually involve short and high intensity workouts with short rest periods in between.

Weight lifting

Almost any exercise that involves you picking up something and putting it back down is a weight lifting exercise. The big classic ones are the squat, shoulder press, deadlift and the bench press. But there are dozens of others you can incorporate into your training such as bent over rows, dips, cleans, snatches and many more.

There are dozens of variations of these lifts and different ways to perform each one. This can make it seem very overwhelming for beginners. But don’t worry, this guide has you covered.

Here you’ll find a list of the most used weight lifting exercises in crossfit and a video tutorial on how to perform them properly.

The Squat

The squat is one of the best exercises for your entire body. It heavily involves your legs, obviously, but it also works your back and your core as well.

What Makes a CrossFit Box a Home - Image

You need to make sure to perform the squat properly, failing to do so can put unnecessary strain on your knees and back. It can also lead to dislocating your knees which is never fun.

The proper way to perform the squat is:

This might seem like a lot but once you get the hang of it, you’ll breeze through it. If you’re unsure if you’re performing the squat correctly, ask someone or check online.

The Overhead Press

The overhead press is not only a great exercise for strengthening your shoulder girdle, but it’s also a very impressive lift to anyone who sees you do it.

The press is simple to learn but takes years to master. Here’s the basic form:

You’ll notice your legs are slightly bent in this picture. You want to keep them that way for the entire exercise. If you’re too fatigued to do this, it’s a good indication that you should stop the exercise and put it down.

Wrist Wraps

Unless you’ve been regularly holding heavy barbells above your head, your wrists are probably not used to this kind of activity. Wearing wrist wraps will help support your wrists and take some of the pressure off them during the exercise.

You can buy wrist wraps or make your own with a piece of cloth and some tape. Just make sure it’s tight enough to stay firmly in place but not too tight to cut off your circulation.

What Makes a CrossFit Box a Home - GYM FIT WORKOUT

Toes forward

Your toes should always point in the direction of where the bar is going. For example if you were doing a standing shoulder press, your toes would point toward the ceiling since the bar would be going upward.

If at any point your toes are pointed outwards, you’ll lose balance and not push through the entire foot. Keep this in mind whenever you do a standing exercise.

Push through your heels

This is especially important when doing the overhead press or any standing shoulder press. If you push through your toes, it’s very easy to tip over. Make sure you have space around you so if you do start to fall, you don’t hit anything (or anyone).

Maintain good posture

This one is very important for all exercises. Your core shouldn’t be too tense but you shouldn’t be slouching either. This will ensure that your balance is correct and you’re not putting unnecessary strain on your back.

Keep breathing

Don’t hold your breath! Not only is this bad for your stamina it’s also bad for your blood pressure. You should always be conscious of your breathing and remember to take deep breaths in through your nose and out through your mouth.

What Makes a CrossFit Box a Home - | Gym Fit Workout

Keep your eyes on the bar

It’s very easy when pushing or pulling a weight to look up or down. Doing this can cause you to fall off balance or hit your head on the weight. So whenever you’re in the middle of a lift, try to keep your eyes on the bar at all times.

You can apply all of the tips listed above to any exercise. If you have any questions about any exercises, feel free to ask. Also, let me know if you’d like me to take pictures of any of the exercises.

Your goal is to be able to perform 10 good reps of an exercise. When you think you can do 10 good reps, add more weight until you cannot do 10 good reps anymore. At this point drop down to the lowest amount of reps you can do (still maintaining proper form) and add more weight.

As an example, say your goal is to do 10 good dips. Your bodyweight is not quite enough to reach this goal, so you find a bar that you can grip with your hands slightly more than shoulder width apart. From here you will do 5 dips, take a break, and then do 5 more dips.

You keep adding weight in 5 or 10 pound increments until you reach your goal (or can no longer lift the additional weight and still do proper form).

Now that you’ve reached your goal, it’s time to increase the difficulty of the exercise. The easiest way to do this is to start with your legs straight. You can either put your feet on a chair as you did before or just keep them straight out in front of you.

Either way, you want to have some sort of surface that your feet can touch without having to bend your knees.

What Makes a CrossFit Box a Home - GYM FIT WORKOUT

This time instead of doing 10 dips, you’re going to do as many as you can in good form. You again start with smaller weight and add more as you did before, but this time your goal is to do more than 6 good dips.

Once you can do more than 6 good dips with your legs straight, it’s time to start doing negatives. A negative is the opposite of a positive. So when you dip down, that’s a positive and when you come back up, that’s a negative.

If that makes sense.

Focusing on negatives for dips is important for two reasons. The first reason is that it helps you build up strength to do more dips in good form and the second reason is that it teaches your muscles to relax a little bit more at the bottom of the dip. This will help your joints and your muscles will be less likely to give out when you try to dip your bodyweight.

The best way to do negatives is to have someone help you. If you don’t have someone to help you, find something to set the bar in such a way that it holds it Position while in the air. I usually just set the bar about a foot off the ground and hold it in place with some books.

From here you just dip down slowly until your arms are at a 90 degree angle and then have someone help you bring the bar back to the top. As you get stronger, you’ll need to increase the amount of weight you’re using and find something higher to set the bar in place on.

Another thing you can do is to put your legs together. This will make it so that you can only go down a little ways which forces your muscles to work harder to get back up.

If you’re brave (or crazy) you can do these in the air. To start, set up the bar as you did before and have someone take it out of your hands at the bottom of the dip. From here all you have to do is dip down and come right back up.

What Makes a CrossFit Box a Home - | Gym Fit Workout

I don’t particularly recommend this type of training. It can cause some serious muscle and tendon strain and you’re only putting more pressure on your joints. If you do start doing dips this way, make sure to not to over do it.

Maybe only do a set every other day and no more than five sets.

You should also keep some of your bodyweight supported as well when you start getting past 10 reps or so. I would also not dip straight down. I would lean forward a little and keep my legs mostly straight.

This takes the weight off your shoulders and allows you to dip a little deeper without straining yourself.

You can also do these with one arm. I would start with the weaker arm and once you get past 6 reps or so, switch arms. This will also give your other shoulder a rest in between reps since you won’t be able to dip with both arms at the same time yet.

Once you can do 20 dips with good form, take a day of rest, and then move on to the next exercise.

Pull ups

Remember the first exercise you did for your back?

This is the second one. And like the first exercise you’re only doing one. The pull up.

Pull ups are a great back exercise and even works your arms and core a bit. Plus, it’s an essential movement pattern for things like climbing and lifting heavy objects.

What Makes a CrossFit Box a Home - gym fit workout

To do a pull up, you simply grip the bar overhand with your hands slightly wider than shoulder width. You can also do underhand, but I find that they mainly work your arms and not so much your back. If you’re really weak, you can use a chair to boost yourself up and over the bar.

Once you have a hold of the bar, lift your feet up off the floor and pull your body up until your chin is at least above the level of the bar. Then lower yourself back down. You should end in the same position you started in.

You shouldn’t need to swing or jump to get yourself up. If you aren’t strong enough to do a pull up, try using your legs by bending them and putting your feet on an elevated surface (i.e.

a box) and then pulling up. You can also try doing negatives. This means you jump up to grab the bar and then lower yourself down slowly. Once your muscles fatigue, you’ll be strong enough to do at least one pull up.

Once you can do one, work on two. And once you can do two, work on three…

And so on and so forth.

The next exercise is going to be a great for your muscles and your cardiovascular system. And it just so happens that it’s also one of my favorite exercises.

This is going to be a good exercise for building up your…

No, not that. This is going to be a good exercise for building up your legs and your hips.

But first you need to get a bar that is about waist high. You could put it above your door at home, or you could just hang a rope from your roof and stand on a stool. I’m using a squat rack, but use whatever you have available.

Basically, you’re going to be jumping up to grab the bar and then dropping down. So find something to jump up to and hang on to it.

What Makes a CrossFit Box a Home - at GYMFITWORKOUT

I’m using a squat rack, so I’m just going to set the safety bar in place and lock it there.

Once you have a secure grip above your head, all you need to do is jump up and grab the bar and then drop back down. You can swing you legs back as you drop or not.

Sources & references used in this article:

Geographies of (cross) fitness: an ethnographic case study of a CrossFit Box by SE Edmonds – Qualitative research in sport, exercise and health, 2020 – Taylor & Francis

CrossFit: Fitness cult or reinventive institution? by MC Dawson – International review for the sociology of sport, 2017 – journals.sagepub.com

Chasing Rx: A spatial ethnography of the CrossFit Gym by MC Crockett, T Butryn – Sociology of Sport Journal, 2018 – journals.humankinetics.com

Training for life-An ethnographic study of the Norwegian CrossFit box by E Skaug – 2018 – duo.uio.no

Home and the Home Gym—The Roots by M Coutinho – elitefts.com

Inside the Box: How CrossFit® Shredded the Rules, Stripped Down the Gym, and Rebuilt My Body by TJ Murphy – 2012 – books.google.com