Tag: strength

A shirtless, tattooed man exhibits significant strict strength in performing a handstand push-up.

Workout 19.3 was a test of strict gymnastics strength, not conditioning.

Athletes needed a degree of conditioning to get to the wall, but the time cap wasn’t overly harsh. The majority of athletes in our gym got through the lunges and step-ups and still had a reasonable amount of time to flip upside down.

And that’s where the workout turned into a true test of strength.

Strict Strength

For years, people have demanded strength tests in the CrossFit Games Open, but my guess is the calls most often came from the barbell crew, not the gymnasts. Heavy deadlifts or a max squat would likely please that crowd.

But instead we got a straight-up test of upper-body strength in 19.3—which is fine with me. The handstand push-up—”headstand push-up” to gymnasts—is actually just an inverted partial-range-of-motion body-weight barbell press. It requires a significant degree of strength, and the actual amount depends on your body weight.

With that in mind, it might be tempting to say the workout favoured smaller athletes, but I don’t think any short people enjoyed the box step-ups very much. If anything, I think shorter athletes had to perform more lunges and disadvantaged step-ups until they got to make up some ground at the wall. Most didn’t get past that, so the handstand walk is irrelevant. 

Overall, I think the workout actually favoured athletes with balanced levels of strength and conditioning. All-around athletes.

Sounds like a pretty good CrossFit workout, right?

Read “19.Too Strong”

Building Strict Strength

If you got stuck at the wall, or if you got fewer reps than you wanted, I’d encourage you to dig into strict work over the next months. You can do jerks and push presses, and you can even kip once in a while, but I’d make sure I get to every class with strict pressing and strict gymnastics work. I’d focus on building strict strength.

Doing so isn’t quite as fun as maxing out a jerk. I don’t need much weight to max out a barbell press, and it’s always a humbling experience when the bar stops moving at the bridge of my nose.

But regularly performing strict pressing movements will help you build strength. And if you really commit to our gymnastics progressions, you’ll find even more success.

As an example, don’t make it a goal to do a kipping handstand push-up. Make it a goal to first do a series of long, slow, controlled eccentric reps first. Or to hold a handstand against the wall for 2 minutes. Think of those things as your base. On top of that, add regular pressing, and join in the curl-offs that seem to be happening with regularity at the dumbbell rack. They’re fun. Then come find me on Sundays and let’s hit the bench press. That’s fun, too.

Slowly build your strength. And always work on your conditioning.

Actually, just come to class regularly. We hit strength and conditioning every day.

Read “Fitness Training and Your Period.”

A large group of happy people from 18 to 70 jump with their arms overhead in a CrossFit gym.

A large group of happy people from 18 to 70 jump with their arms overhead in a CrossFit gym.If you entered this question in Google, you probably saw a lot of stuff about strength workouts, cardio programs, planning, wearable technology and recovery.

We’ve simplified our answer to your question:

1. Click here to talk to us for free.

We’re going to talk first so you can get all the answers you’re searching for right now.

It can be overwhelming to try and start something new, and it can feel impossible if you’re on your own. You can spend time researching what you should do at the gym, and you can read all about cardio, weight loss, fat loss, high-intensity training (HIIT), strength and power, target heart rate, body composition, nutrition—the list goes on and on.

Or you can just come see us on the west side of Winnipeg. We’ve been on Berry Street since 2012, and you’re going to love our facility.

You don’t need to worry about all the different aspects of fitness for the same reason that you don’t need to know how to repair your car: We’re here to take care of the details. We’re your expert. 

We’ll put together the right plan for you and answer all your questions. You don’t need to learn all about fitness and try to create a plan for yourself. We’ve got you covered. You just need to show up and smile. That’s it.

If you make an appointment to talk to us, you don’t have to prepare to work out. You just come and meet with a friendly coach who will find out all about you and your goals. He or she will then tell you how our programs can help you, and your coach will give you a prescription that will help you accomplish your goals. 

From there, you’ll start a program one-on-one with a coach who will teach you exactly what to do and how to do it. Your coach will also help you out with nutrition information. After eight sessions, you can either continue to work one-on-one or join our group classes. Either way, you’ll have a coach who will tell you what to do and how to do it every day. You don’t have to do anything but show up.

Here are a list of things our program will improve:

  • Strength
  • Cardiovascular fitness
  • Flexibility
  • Core strength
  • Body weight (lose or gain weight according to goals)
  • Body composition (lose fat or gain muscle according to goals)
  • Balance
  • Co-ordination
  • Power
  • Agility
  • Endurance 
  • Stamina
  • Accuracy 
  • Speed
  • Diet/nutrition
  • Confidence
  • Mood

If you’re feeling overwhelmed about starting a fitness program, we can help. Click below to meet us to discuss the plan that will work for you!  


I’ve been doing a lot of work on gymnastics articles lately, and I’ll share a secret with you: strength is required for success in gymnastics.

As coaches, we can provide lots of technical tips, and you’ll need them at some point, but to get a first muscle-up or pull-up or handstand push-up, you have to have strength. There’s no way around that.

So we focus on that: strict work, gymnastics focus sessions, weighted pull-ups, couplets, accessory work, spotting and scaling. All of that is designed to bring up strength levels. Once you’ve got that strength, we can iron out technique to get your chin over the bar or your hands on top of the rings.

But strength comes first. Whenever you see a block of gymnastics time in a class, know that you’re usually doing strength work–and it will pay off.

CrossFit 204-204 strength group
204 Strength Barbell Club returns Jan. 7!

New Year’s Day: Start the year with fitness! Join a host of your smiling friends for a fun workout while most of the world is sleeping off a hangover.

The holiday workout is set for 11 a.m. (all regular classes will be cancelled). Please sign up here as you normally would. The workout is set for two hours, but you will not be working out for two hours.

Also of note: 204 Strength Barbell Club starts Jan. 7. Sessions are two hours and run from noon to 2 p.m. on Saturdays for 8 weeks. Cost is $84 for current members and $157.50 for those without current memberships.

Halftime show at the Massacre!
Halftime show at the Massacre on Feb. 14!

Please note classes are cancelled on Feb. 14 for the 204 Massacre. We have nine athletes competing, so come on out and cheer. And please note there will be a group workout at 11 a.m. on Feb. 16. All other classes will be cancelled for the holiday. Please sign in as you normally do.

Every minute for 8 sets:

3 back squats

Front-rack or overhead lunges 8-8-8

Romanian deadlifts 8-8-8

This classic workout is far more challenging than it looks.
The press!

Press 3-3-2-1

10 rounds:

2 strict presses (135/95)

Unbroken muscle-ups/chest-to-bar pull-ups/ring rows (number selected by the athlete)

Rest 1 minute

Skills Session

4 rounds of:

1 column run*

6 kettlebell snatches per arm

*If the isn’t room for a column run, do 10 16-foot shuttle sprints (there and back is 1 rep)


Squats like a boss. Can also play Thunderstuck on French horn.
Squats like a boss. Can also play Thunderstuck on French horn.

3-position clean (floor, below the knee, mid-hang) 1-1-1-1-1 @ 70 percent of 1RM

Pause front squat 4-4-4-4

Dumbbell or kettlebell overhead walking lunges 10-10-10 (5 steps per leg)