CrossFit and Seniors

 Don't set up next to this lady in a workout unless you are prepared to be inspired.

Don't set up next to this lady in a workout unless you are prepared to be inspired.

At Catacombs, we have a broad range of ages that are active members of our community. Our T-Up! program boasts a large crew of middle-school aged kids that are working on the fundamentals of CrossFit while building a fantastic fitness base. They put the FUN in FUNctional Fitness. We have a strong crew of high school and college aged athletes that peg the intensity day after day...always with good technique and always with the end goal in mind. The majority of our athletes are working stiffs, moms and dads, and recreational athletes that use CrossFit to build fitness for life and for their chosen adventures. We have a handful of competitive athletes that use CrossFit as off-season conditioning or training for their athletic pursuits. Last, but certainly not least we have a very motivated and hardworking group of Seniors. These guys are not looking for any breaks or shortcuts, they are here to work. Workout next to one of them in a class and you can't help but be inspired...or humbled.

Unfortunately, research shows that our Seniors are more of the exception than the rule and that it is significantly lessening the quality of life of those seniors that are less active.

  • 2001 data demonstrated that 15.4 percent of those over 50 and 36.2 percent of those over 70 have some degree of mobility problem.
  • In 2009, 17.3 percent of adults aged 55-64 had difficulty walking one quarter mile.
  • This limitation in function affected 56.1 percent of the population by the time they were 85.
  • Half of the over-65 population now has difficulty stooping, bending or kneeling. 

These documented and progressively worsening examples of mobility problems with aging are not an effect of disease or decrepitude. They are outcomes resulting from the choice to be sedentary, from the belief that 30 minutes of low-level activity on most days will magically deliver fitness, and from the use of every easy-out approach and product promising to deliver fitness. Simply, these problems come from a lack of physical fitness.

We know that exercise training in older populations can enhance physical fitness and support functional levels similar to those of younger, physically active populations. It is critically important for older adults to train to improve fitness—strength, endurance and mobility. Being physically active might help retirees avoid disease, but fitness is imperative for quality of life in later years. 

If you are a generally healthy senior looking for a place to improve your fitness, come see us. We are ready to be your partner in preserving your health, fitness, and mobility as you age. If you have yet to attain "senior" status, keep making deposits into the bank. It could have a direct effect on how functional you are in your later years and how many of those years you have. 

This post is based on an article in the April edition of the CrossFit Journal entitled "Fitness, a Choice for the Ages". It's a little dense, but you can read the full article here.