“It is a very complete kind of training in which the work of all muscle groups is sought through a very extensive variation of both exercises and methods, and with which you can get to achieve your goals quite quickly, as long as be done with patience, perseverance and effort.”

 

Roger is a graduate for INEFC Barcelona, a Chiromassage Therapist and physical trainer of the OK league women’s team, Hoquei Club Palau. He manages the Crossbox Palau workout centre, specialized in high intensity training through exercises from various sports disciplines.

Our objective? To present you cross training and functional training, as a training option that allows you to increase general physical condition in a quickly way. In addition, keep in mind that it can be a good complement to your regular sports activity in order to improve your results.

Why do cross training?

Because in itself it is a training that is adapted or can be adapted to everyone, for people who are used to doing sports and for people who want to start now. It is a very complete kind of training in which the work of all muscle groups is sought through a very extensive variation of both exercises and methods, and with which you can get to achieve your goals quite quickly, as long as be done with patience, perseverance and effort.

 

Another of the concerns that the user has when doing an internet search, when starting out in this discipline, in this sport, in this training, is…How do you train in cross training?

We’re talking about high-intensity group functional workouts. In this case we work with minimum groups of 4 to 15 people, in which there is always a first part of warm-up that can last approximately ten minutes, a second part of strength work, either with weightlifting or different exercises with the body itself, and another one regarding the metcone, which is the most metabolic, more intense part and we finish doing stretches to return to calm.

What would you say are the top four or five benefits of this kind of discipline?

By working all physical capacities, such as endurance, strength, coordination, flexibility and agility, we have benefits at all levels, especially health, obviously, but then also aesthetically, psychologically and at any level. Really, physical activity and sports, benefits us in everything: in the prevention of injuries and illnesses.

When do you notice the results practicing cross training? A user who takes care of himself, who follows the guidelines that a coach like you can give him. After how long can he/she see physical and psychological results?

This depends a lot on each person, on whether they have already played sports or started from scratch and also on how many days they are willing to train. But more or less, on average, people usually take about two days a week and in about three months it would be the time when you start to see physical results. That is, when you look in the mirror and you recognize a change. But really from the first day there are changes, because you train and the next day you have aches and pains, and you say: Okay, I have done something!

At a hormonal and psychological level, it can be perceived as well. Playing sports makes hormones secrete that make you feel more relaxed, happier, calmer. This makes you eat better, you sleep better… So, the changes are very fast.

Who can practice cross training? What age ranges are advisable?

High intensity cross training is recommended from 18 years old, when the body is already developed. Always, obviously, adapting according to each case. If a 60-year-old person has osteoarthritis or a broken meniscus or any kind of injury, the training will be adapted, but there really is no problem. That is, taking into account the characteristics of each person, it would be suitable for all people.

There is a concept called “the training pyramid”. These are the basic pillars of the routine of this discipline. Could you summarize what are the components of this pyramid? How is a normal cross training workout structured?

Warm up, strength, the metcon (metabolic work) and the final part of stretching. What we do is an estimation, for example, for a month and we propose that we are going to work a part of the effort, with these exercises, with these loads, during the first week. The second week we will do some exercises with different loads and the same with the metcons, we will vary so that there are many different methods, so that nobody adapts and it is not something monotonous, it’s just that something always changing, that you come to the gym and say: “Surprise, let’s see what it plays today!”.

Many people are interested in how to practice this kind of discipline at home. What is your opinion about it?

It can be done without problems. Of course, prior instruction is required. The material can be purchased on any website, today there are many companies that are dedicated to this and you can get it at an affordable price. But the correction of exercises, the design of the workouts and the motivation to work in a group, will not be found at home. What happens in these cases is that while you are motivated, which normally lasts 2-3 weeks or a month, it is great and you train very hard, but the time runs, and when you are alone, as no one is watching you, it is usual for the training level to drop.

On the other hand, if you make a movement, for example, a snatch, and you don’t have anyone to correct you, you may be doing the movement in a wrong way and that can lead to injury.

Regarding the design of workouts, you must have a knowledge base to be able to structure them correctly and not get an injury, not knowing how and when to put them on.

 

Can cross training be combined with other guided activities at the gym such as cycling, stretching, etc …?

Yes. In the end, cross training can be combined with whatever you want. The important thing is to do sports, move in the way you like best. In cross training very functional exercises are done, with a lot of movement, such as moving loads up and down. And it’s compatible with a hypertrophy work in the gym, with breaks and sets of 8-10 reps. One is more aesthetic and the other more functional, but they can be perfectly combined.

We would like to talk now about the rate and degree of injuries that a person can have while practicing cross training.

Actually, all sports injure, because one muscle group is always used more than another, in one way or another. But it is true that we, when working at high intensities and if you do not do it consciously and patiently, it is easy to injure yourself. When you start practicing this sport, you have to be aware that you cannot be at the level of a person who has been training for a long time. You have to take it easy, especially practicing first the technical movement and when you already have the technique, start adding weight. It is very important not to want to run and take it as something serious, that you have to learn before you can continue to evolving on it.

The most frequent injuries are, for example, those of the shoulders, because we do many exercises to lift weights above the head, and the joint is always involved, both in a burpee and in a pull-up, where the shoulder is always involved. It is the joint that suffers the most from all. Doing a preventive job, some rotator exercises, stretching, joint mobility and going through the physical therapist, if necessary, there is no problem.

We’ll talk now about the apparels. Regarding genders, what clothes are used in cross training?

Starting with the girls, tops are very stylish, tight and have good support. For the bottom, compression shorts (leggings) are used. Close-fitting clothing is very important, more than anything because, when carrying many loads and material that must be moved, we must avoid being caught in it.

Likewise, it’s important that they are very breathable garments, comfortable, very elastic and flexible, since we do many movements, and if a short pants is pulling you, in the end it is limiting you and it bothers you.

And regarding the boys, t-shirts that breathe well and are tight, and comfortable short pants. High socks are also fashionable. The shoes must be hard, that hold the foot well and provide security when performing the exercises.

You have had the opportunity to try VIÓ garments. What opinion do you deserve VIÓ garments for cross training?

Amazing, really. They are very breathable, flexible and comfortable garments. I have tried the VIÓ garments in a couple of workouts and they have not given me any kind of problem when making movements, on the contrary, my experience has been very positive.

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