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Friday, October 4, 2013

Toddler Cross-Fit?

Exercising with kids is one of the best gifts you can give them.


I am not against youngsters, even toddlers getting plenty of exercise. I'm just a little sad that it has come to the point where people are paying for a few hours a week of structured play. Me and even my children enjoyed hours of running and changing direction while playing tag and other games. We climbed trees and jumped up on and down from all kinds of surfaces and objects. We wrestled and swam in creeks and biked all over the countryside. We also pushed lawnmowers and pulled weeds and hoed gardens. We even got to toss bales of hay as we got older. If this is the only alternative to hours in front of the television or computer, then so be it. I guess we have to give some credit to those who are smart enough to recognize a need and make some money off of it. It just seems to me that these are truly poor kids who have parents rich enough to pay for them to play. My own kids were lucky enough to have most of the experiences that I had growing up with the added advantage of being able to follow me to the weight room. As toddlers they loved to climb up and slide down the inclined benches and swing from the bars on the racks. It wasn't long until they were using sticks to imitate the lifts and then using light weights. "Workouts" were always fun and playtime made even more special by spending time together. I never thought of paying someone else to do that for me.

Apparently you're never too young to get your first "WOD Beast" T-shirt. A CrossFit affiliate in Long Island City Queens will start offering classes to toddlers, introducing soon-to-be jacked 3- to 5-year-olds to the world of air squats and bear crawls. CrossFit Gantry is adding the classes as part of their CrossFit Kids program. The kids don't use weights or kettlebells, instead focusing on "colors, counting and … functionality in movement," like learning how to pick up a heavy backpack without hurting themselves. "Children develop and grow stronger by doing no weight and lots of repetition," CrossFit Kids coach Michele Gelbert told DNAinfo New York. "For them, it's just like a huge game."
 But the huge game does come at a price: two toddler classes per week will cost $280 per month. 

Dinisin Whaley at one of his father's strongman meets.

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