Fun with barbells

Yesterday’s women’s barbell intro class was fun. It was a great learning experience for me as a trainer and teacher working with a group at various levels of experience and natural athleticism. I was lucky to have two volunteer assistants from the gym, because it would have been a lot harder to manage without them. We taught and practiced (a little) the squat, press, and deadlift, and then ran a totally unofficial CrossFit Total (three attempts at each lift; total the heaviest of each in pounds for the score) so that people could get a taste of the lifts and of one way they can be used as benchmarks and in a competition.

We also made a video clip of each person’s lifts. Some looked better than others and I hope people will use the videos to compare good form with common mistakes. If I do the event again, I might skip the CFT in favor of more teaching, in order to make the common mistakes less common more quickly.

As I expected, it was rewarding to talk with other women about various kinds of weightlifting. They were not much better informed than I was four years or so ago, and they seemed happy to hear about the differences between weightlifting/Olympic lifting, power lifting, body building, and everyday weight training with machines and dumbbells, plus why CrossFitters value some lifts over others and how we use them in workouts. We didn’t have time to do a CrossFit workout, of course, but were able to just touch on it.

Afterward most of us hung out at Hale’s for a while. A good day.

I didn’t complete the CrossFit Total in the interests of time (neither did my helpers) but I did get a PR squat of 100 kg. Allison also hit a couple of PRs. We are still beginners enough to get frequent PRs–a reward to “not” being elite.