“The ‘Best Mover Award’ Goes To…”

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CrossFit Beginners

Let me ask you a question. Have you ever seen an elite level performer in weightlifting, gymnastics, sprinting or any other fitness-dominant sport excel with gross errors in his/her movement?

Obviously not, but think about this for a moment. If any one could use strength or talent to cut a few corners, wouldn’t a champion powerlifter, for example, have what it takes to out-muscle “perfect form?”

Why, then, are these elite-level performers also quite often the best movers? Some may say, “Well they’ve got the most experience, so of course they are the best movers.” But, is that it?

What if a gold-medal–winning weightlifter moves so well because she has to? I’d argue that elite-level performers share common proper biomechanics because it’s requisite to tap into sustainable exceptional performance. In other words, one doesn’t become a champion in gymnastics without first becoming an exceptional mover.

“Perfect form” isn’t just a safeguard for injury; it’s a requirement for full expression of one’s potential.

If this wasn’t true, think of how many cases where we’d say, “Well Mr. Beginner, don’t watch videos of Pyrros Dimas because he’s just so good that he can get away with things that you can’t. Since you’re a beginner, you’ve got to do everything right.” Instead, we say, “Watch Pyrros lift. He has to do so many things right to be the best in the world.”

This idea, then, just puts more fuel in the fire for a base-of-quality movement. If you’re a newer athlete trying to get strong before you move well, you’ve got a classic cart-before-the-horse scenario. Switch it up. Move well, so that you can get strong.

— Logan Gelbrich
@functionalcoach