This is one of those questions that will yield dozens of responses. Depending on which answer you want to hear, you will find answers that range from questionable to far-fetched. I encourage every one of my clients to pursue fitness throughout their lives, no matter what age or condition they may be in. In fact, I have seen dozens of individuals who have made significant gains while taking part in Crossfit training centers throughout the country.

That said, there are instances where Crossfit may be inappropriate for you. The Crossfit method utilizes functional movements that are constantly varied at high intensity. When you are in good health there is no reason why you cannot progress wisely with a Crossfit program. However once you incur an injury, or have a history of surgery on one or more parts of the body, there are certain steps you want to go through before going full steam ahead with Crossfit.

Get cleared by your doctor AND physical therapist-
Although crossfit instructors are required to attend training, accrue several hundred hours of training hours, and pass an examination, they are not healthcare providers. Unless your instructor is a licensed professional with a degree in healthcare, you want to get the opinion of a medical professional you trust.

If it hurts, stop-
Since many of the exercises performed during a Crossfit workout are functional movements, your body will be moving throughout multiple planes while manipulating either your bodyweight or more. As with any workout, if you just aren’t feeling right during a certain movement, its best to discontinue and consult with your coach to see if there is a variation you can try.

Allow your body to recover-
The wear and tear tough workouts have on your body in well documented. Even though your intentions may be good, doing too much without appropriate rest between workouts may lead to an injury.

Start slow-
I had a patient who came in after attending a Crossfit introduction class that was supposed to be a precursor to participating in a regular program. While she did gain some valuable information, she unfortunately did a total of nearly 300 squats, giving her anterior knee pain that required a few weeks of therapy to resolve. Be sure to find a competent Crossfit trainer with glowing reviews before purchasing that great deal you found on Groupon.

Just like any physical activity, Crossfit has risks involved. This doesn’t mean that it’s not for you. With a sensible approach and a great instructor, there is no reason Crossfit cannot benefit you on your way to achieving optimal health.

Yours in health,

Keith Pacific