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CrossFit helping young Beijingers optimize physicality

Reporter: Tang Bo 丨 CCTV.com

11-23-2016 12:51 BJT

A new, alternative fitness program from the United States has become popular with young Beijingers, as it aims to improve their core strength and overall physical competence.

In less than two months, Shu Yufan will take an exam to become a qualified coach for Crossfit, a strength and conditioning program that aims to improve one’s overall physicality.

“I used to play basketball a lot in college, and I wanted to improve my jumping ability. They say weight lifting is the best way of doing this, and I found that the crossfit program here can give me professional help with that. So I started to work out here,” said Shu Yufan, trainee coach with CrossFit Slash.

Shu graduated with a degree in electronic information engineering this summer. But instead of becoming a communications or a software engineer, he decided that Crossfit coaching was a better option for him. He says he loves the training program, as it helps him to understand how his own body works before he can advise others about theirs.

“Crossfit absorbs the good elements from many sports, such as weightlifting and gymnastics. It can give you phenomenol strength. I spent two years building up my muscles in the traditional way, and now Crossfit has also largely improved the core strength of my body,” Shu said.

According to the founder of the workouts, Crossfit is not a specialized fitness program, but a deliberate attempt to optimize physical competence in 10 recognized fitness domains, including flexibility, power, speed, balance, and accuracy.

Originating in the U.S. in 2000, Crossfit involves “constant varied practical movements performed at high intensity.” Hour-long classes typically include a warm-up, a skill-development segment, a high-intensity work-out and a period of individual or group stretching. Individual performances can be analysed and scored to encourage competition and progress.

“It’s strange that people spend their lives like this all the time now and they wonder why they have back pain. So Crossfit, the idea is you need to do a variety of activities, you are not a yogi, you are not a runner; you need to be able to lift weight, and you also need to be able to run,” said CrossFit Slash co-founder Tim Hill.

There are about 400 full-time cross-fitters in Beijing, and the number is growing. Afterall, Beijing’s youth are always looking at new and improved ways to enhance their physical appearance.

“It offers something unique in the world we live in. When you come here people know who you are, you talk to people and you interact, you have fun, sometimes it sucks, but at the end you talk to some people who also went through that experience. So you have the shared pain that carries you through,” Hill said.

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