Functional Training Isn’t About Mimicking Life

This is similar to the misunderstanding of “sport specific training,” which is what? Basketball but heavier? Functional training isn’t about training looking like life. The idea is that the training serves you in your real life. I’ve still never seen the roller bag clean and press into the overhead bin that so many of my CrossFit colleagues loved to claim was the importance of teaching people who sometimes go on vacation about the barbell clean and jerk, for example. (I prefer the rounded back deadlift, hammer curl, and press into the overhead bin myself…)

Your training is functional in nature if it serves a function. Movements that change people for the better seem as functional as functional gets. Functional movements drive adaptation better than non-functional ones. Period. 

Today we’re teaching the rope climb. The smart ass in us all might want to ask when the ole’ rope accent is going to show up in our lives before the end of 2019. Unless you work for Captain Hook, I wouldn’t hold your breath. We’re climbing ropes today, nonetheless. 

You didn’t ask, but.. “Why you ask?” Because the ability to climb a rope has a cascade of other benefits beyond the obvious one of getting up a rope. People who can climb ropes demonstrate a certain amount of strength. They also have a certain relationship with their strength relative to their body mass. Said differently, the rope climbing version of yourself isn’t just stronger than your non-rope climbing self, but it’s also a leaner, more balanced, more resilient version of yourself. Would you say you’d be more “functional” in your life if you were those things rather than the alternative? I would. 

This is the same reason we don’t put weights in your lap while driving to training for life in traffic on the 405 freeway and the reason we don’t do intervals of inbox clearing email efforts. We also still don’t do that weird rotation move that we all do when transitioning dirty dishes from the sink to the bottom drawer of the dishwasher with dumbbells to get ready for the real thing. Training in the gym isn’t about mimicking life. It’s about making you better for it. 


Logan Gelbrich   


9/11/19 WOD

Spend 15 minutes on rope climb technique…


Complete the following for time:



Then, every 4 minutes for 16 minutes, complete the following for time:

200m Run

10 DB Burpees (50/35)

10 DB Push Presses