Sobrero, G. L., Arnett, S., Schafer, M., Stone, W., Lyons, S., Esslinger, K., Esslinger, T., Crandall, J., & Maples, J. (2014). CrossFit vs. resistance-training: effects of a six-week training program on selected performance indicators. Medicine & Science in Sports & Exercise, 46(5), Supplement abstract number 3342.

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"CrossFit emphasizes constantly varied, high-intensity, functional movements including strength and conditioning, gymnastics, Olympic weightlifting, and sport/specialty movements. Conversely, traditional strength training programs utilize the progressive overload principle, similar movements each week, and specified work-to-rest ratios."

This study determined if differences exist in performance measures between CrossFit and traditional strength-training females after a six-week training program. Ss completed a six-week exercise intervention. Ss were randomly assigned to a CrossFit (N = 8) or strength-training (N = 11) group and trained three days a week for six weeks with certified trainers. Investigators examined muscular endurance with push-ups and pull-ups, upper-body strength via one-repetition maximum bench-press, and upper- and lower-body power and agility using the medicine ball put, vertical jump, and Margaria-Kalamen and T-test protocols.

Both groups improved significantly in push-ups, bench-press, vertical jump, and T-test. There were no differences within or between the groups for pull-ups, medicine-ball put, or Margaria-Kalamen test.

Implication. CrossFit and traditional strength-training were effective at improving muscular endurance, strength, and performance. There were no differences between groups in pull-up or upper- and lower-body power measures. Bench-press and agility movements are not routinely prescribed in CrossFit, and power is not a focus in traditional strength-training, yet the groups performed similarly.

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