Preventing CrossFit Injuries

In 2006, I started my career in Sports Medicine and have since had the privilege of working with some of Houston’s professional athletes to being team Chiropractor/Athletic Trainer for a local high school and Houston running clubs. I have also been extremely blessed to treat some of the top competitors in past CrossFit Games. Participating in this community, both as a CrossFitter and Chiropractor, has introduced me to many elite athletes and, with the growing popularity of CrossFit, those who are new to this type of workout.

Does CrossFit Work?

I am a true believer in the benefits of CrossFit and am tired of the reputation that it’s a thoughtless, fitness fad with careless coaches. CrossFit is just another way to get your workout in, and with working out comes the possibility of injury. Too often a patient relates an injury to a WOD or a specific exercise performed. While they may have suffered the pain or injury in the midst of a workout there is usually an underlying issue that led up to that point.

Are you listening to your body and caring for it in a way that is required in order to perform at the level you want it to? Based on my experience, I will say the answer is no.

CrossFit Injury Prevention

Crossfit Injury Prevention

There are daily exercises and stretches you can perform to keep your muscles and joints prepared for the variety of movements involved in CrossFit. Keep Calm & Foam Roll On.

I believe many of the injuries I treat can be prevented if you adhere to these four simple recommendations:

  1. Sacrifice more weight for proper technique.
  2. Listen to Your Body – understand the difference between pain and soreness and how to manage both. 
  • Pain doesn’t just go away. Stop waiting and find a professional that can pinpoint the cause and treat it before it develops into a serious injury.
  • Soreness- it happens, right? But it also has to be managed.

3. Stretching & Mobilization.

4. Rest Days & Sleep – It doesn’t matter what you’re training for. Your body needs days off and an adequate amount of sleep.

With the above in mind, here are a few things to take into consideration before joining your new CrossFit home:

  • On ramp classes/ Basic Intro Classes – If the option for basic fundamental classes is not offered, move on.
  • Class Size – in order for a Coach to give a reasonable amount of attention to a class there needs to be a good ratio of members to coaches. Are you 1 of 30 members getting instruction from 1 coach? Move on.
  • Professional reference in the event of an injury – if they don’t have someone they can refer you to for an injury or pain, move on.

There are many CrossFit veterans out there, as well as those just starting out. What advice would you offer to those just starting CrossFit?