When you think of movements that are your "least favorite" do burpees ever spring to mind? They certainly do for a LOT of people, and for good reason - they're a tough, whole body movement that takes a lot of energy to complete.
Burpees are also one of the more controversial movements in the larger fitness world. Many mainstream strength coaches detest them and purposefully avoid them due to the repetitive stress to several joints/areas (wrists, shoulders, lower back).
In my mind, the burpee is as valid as any other exercise, with the same guidelines - if it is executed well, then can be a very effective training tool. Burpees are only 'hard' on the lower back if sufficient mobility isn't there and can be tough on the wrists/elbows/shoulders if the surrounding muscles are weak.
So if we do our "job" and work on mobility, core strength, and upper body strength, the burpee is a great movement to put into training.
In CrossFit of course, it is also a "competitive" movement, in that it is common to see in competition and done for speed and/or volume. With the CrossFit Open coming up, we need to practice burpees with sufficient volume and intensity to armour your bodies in the even that they come up.
So you'll see them quite regularly in our training leading into March for that very reason. Burpees are a skill that can be improved, carry a mental challenge that must be understood and mastered, and need to be prepared for.
If you feel undue strain on the areas mentioned above when doing burpees, then a really good overall modification is to do them with a bench or box. Instead of your hands going on the floor, the hands get placed on the bench or box for your pushup. This puts less stress on the upper body and core muscles, while also requiring less hip flexion mobility.
As your mobility and strength improve, you can move to a lower box and progressively work down safely into the full burpee.
So that's it team, there's a rationale for it, these burpees aren't just to make the workout harder - it's to prepare you for whats to come. Enjoy the process and see you soon,
TRAINING FRIDAY SATURDAY
WARM UP - 3 ROUNDS
Band X walks (monster walks) x 10 steps R, 10 steps L
Band pull aparts x 10
Dowel overhead squats x 10
SKILL: SNATCH - THRUSTER COMBO
Every 1:30 for 15 mins, alternating between:
3 Snatches, 135/95 lbs
5 Thrusters, 135/95 lbs
You don't have to use the same weight for both movements! Start at a pretty tough weight with the goal of building a small amount to a tough combo at the end :)
Complete as many rounds as possible in 14 mins of:
7 Hang Power Cleans, 115/75 lbs
14 Wallballs, 20/14 lbs
Bring out a couple of small plates to put in front of the bumper plates so your bar doesnt roll into the parking lot!
ANY SCALING LEVEL CAN SUB PISTOLS FOR WALLBALLS (7/LEG)
FG1: 45-55/65-75, scale wallball