Crossfit has become one of the most popular forms of fitness for people looking to get in shape. It’s not just a workout, CrossFit is also a sport with its own competitive games and athletes competing around the world.
The number of people doing CrossFit is increasing every year. The workouts are challenging but you’ll never be bored because there are so many different exercises that can be done at any time. This article will briefly go over some essential equipment you need before starting your first workout!
Obviously, you’ll need shoes (ideally cross-training shoes), shorts, t-shirts and a wattle bottle. Now let’s get to the specifics for a proper Crossfit WOD:
Wounded hands after every workout is not an option anymore! Even if it gives a warrior look and shows how much you have exceeded your limits, there comes a time when it becomes necessary to protect your hands, if only to not feel limited during the next training session. And that’s when hand grips come in! Many crossfitters have their own opinion about this little accessory, so just choose some that you feel comfortable wearing.
They will protect you against chafing, cuts and blisters, but at the same time, they allow you to stay in direct contact with the bar. They are made of a wristband that keeps them in place, a band that covers the palm and 2 or 3 openings for fingers.
Made of leather or neoprene, hand grips sometimes have additional protections, such as a support band at the wrist, but it is especially important to ensure that they manage perspiration properly and that they remain non-slippery.
In Crossfit, there’s a lot of pressure on the wrists. Whether in weight bearing movements or in floor exercises, they can be hypertensive or forced to repeat the same action many times in a row. That’s why wrist wraps are a must, especially for beginners.
Wrist wraps are also very simple to use: they are just strips of fabric that wrap around the wrists. But as these bands are designed to tighten these wrists, they bring the right amount of heat while reducing pressure and providing support.
They can be adapted to all types of athletes, whether men, women, large or small wrists! Some wraps even have a little loop to put around the thumb for a perfect positioning of the band and an optimal support.
Weightlifting shoes are a type of shoe that has a raised heel. The sole is made from either wood or hard plastic, which is what gives weightlifting shoes their elevated height. They also have a rubber sole for grip. If you look at a weightlifting shoe, they look sort of like a dress shoe with a thick sole.
What Are Weightlifting Shoes Used For?
Weightlifting shoes are used in Olympic weightlifting and powerlifting. In fact, you can’t compete in these sports without them. They’re also used in Crossfit anytime there’s a strength day programmed.
Here are the benefits of weightlifting shoes:
- Helps boost performance in squats and olympic movements. This is because the raised heel gives your body more room to drop down into the bottom of a squat, which makes it easier for you to maintain an upright torso.
- Prevents your feet from sliding around inside the shoe. This is important for squats because if your feet slide then you may end up putting too much pressure on one foot or toe, which can result in injuries.
- The raised heel helps train the quadriceps and gluteus muscles. This is because you are constantly trying to stay upright during squats, which makes your quads work harder even when you aren’t lifting much weight.
You need a massage ball for Crossfit, because you want to help your muscles recover faster after hard workouts. The more often you train, the bigger your need for massaging techniques becomes.
There are several effective ways to use massage balls in Crossfit, but they all serve one purpose: breaking down your muscles. Massage balls are used to dig into the deeper layers of your muscles, reach problem areas and relieve tension.
You can use a massage ball for Crossfit before, after or in between your training sessions. There’s no rule how often you should use them – it all depends on what works best for you. We suggest trying out different techniques and choose for yourself what works best.
Similar to the massage ball, you need to work on mobility to increase your Crossfit performances. To perform well in every workout, working on your flexibility and mobility is as useful as strengthening your muscles, and that’s why a foam roller is also an accessory that every crossfitter should have.
With its spikes, it allows you to massage yourself and remove the muscle knots that appear after each session where you have given all you can!
The main advantage of the foam roller is that thanks to its shape, it can be used on any area of the body without any difficulty: even alone, you can properly massage yourself since you just have to position yourself on it and roll it on the sore area.
Since you can control the pressure you exert on the roller yourself, it is easy to relieve both tension and muscle stiffness. In addition, while the roller acts in depth on the trigger points, it also stimulates the circulation of blood and oxygen for better muscle recovery!
The foam roller is therefore the ideal post-training accessory. The compact size can be easily slipped into the gym bag, but the larger size can be left at home to be used once you get home. And taking care of your body after your workouts means making sure your muscles are ready to tackle a new WOD.
A Good Jump Rope
In Crossfit, we talk about a speed skipping rope. This accessory is very popular with crossfit enthusiasts. It improves cardio performance, stability, mobility and overall endurance. Jumping rope is very beneficial for the respiratory and cardiovascular systems.
When practiced as part of a speed workout, this physical exercise is very effective in burning a significant number of calories. Jumping rope therefore promotes weight loss.
Crossfit jump ropes can be made of nylon, steel, cotton, vinyl or leather. Their handles have a rotation system with a ball bearing. When they are weighted, they improve the targeting of the muscles during the effort.
Even more sophisticated, some jump ropes count the number of revolutions and calories burned to give you an overall view of your performance.
The great thing about a jump rope is that it fits easily into a small backpack. So you can take it anywhere for impromptu intense physical activity sessions! In addition to its ability to improve your endurance, movement coordination, cardio and breathing capacities and to promote weight loss, this accessory will help you relieve your stress.
Whether it’s for the warm-up, for cardio, or for the WOD itself, the jump rope is also one of the essential pieces of equipment for CrossFit. However, we are not talking about a simple skipping rope, but a speed rope, a fast skipping rope, made of sheathed steel.
Nylon, cotton or even plastic ropes are indeed too heavy for sports practice, especially when it is intensive. They tend to slow down the movement, which is the opposite of the desired effect.
In addition to their sheathed steel rope, usually 2.5mm or 3mm in diameter, speed ropes have ergonomic handles for a comfortable grip, but they are also equipped with fluid ball bearings, which allows for greater speed without the rope getting tangled.
In order to adapt perfectly to all athletes and users, the length of the rope is easily adjustable (the ideal length is from the foot to the armpits).
To avoid damaging the skipping rope too quickly, it is recommended not to use it on abrasive surfaces, such as concrete or asphalt outdoors, for example. The steel in the middle of the rope could gradually degrade, and the rope would eventually break.
To preserve your equipment, jumping on less aggressive floors is therefore recommended (such as sports mats or rubber mats), especially since it also provides some cushioning during the exercise.
Having weak knees is a real handicap. Especially when the WOD includes a lot of squats, or box jumps.
Their working principle is also very simple: by compressing the knee joint, they facilitate its warming up, keep it warm while it is put to work, and they also help to get up more energetically.
To be sure to choose good knee sleeves, suitable for Crossfit practice, pick some in neoprene or stretch nylon, so that they are elastic and offer good flexibility.
To be sure that they stay in place during movements, they can be equipped with Velcro, but it is not necessarily necessary. If they’re the right size for you they should stay in place.
On the other hand, you have to be very careful about their thickness. For Crossfit, it’s better to choose 7 mm ones. They are indeed the most adapted to offer a real protection for the knee during weightlifting, heavy squats, jumps, etc.
As you progress in Crossfit, eventually you’ll need a weighlifting belt. Just like knee sleeves and wrist wraps, they work by compressing the abdominal belt to reduce the pressure on the spine and thus offer more energy. Deadlift, snatch, heavy squat… a belt is the Crossfit accessory that you must consider at some point!
But it’s not miracle piece of gear either, so don’t believe that simply wearing it will immediately allow you to lift heavier. It should help to improve the sheathing: it does not replace it. It should be seen as a kind of support, it is not designed to support the load in place of the athlete, and above all, the athlete must always demonstrate good technique.
It should also be noted that the weightlifting belt is not worn all the time and should not be used during all workouts, as this could impair the athlete’s weight-bearing abilities and lead to a kind of addiction.
It is exclusively intended for exercises with very heavy loads, and in any case, when it is worn correctly, it is so tight that it is necessary to remove it afterwards to breathe better.
The strength belt is therefore not an accessory that will be essential to all crossfitters, but many will need it to achieve progress. And at this point, the choice is rather wide: leather or neoprene, with a buckle or a Velcro attachment, the models available are very varied.