Everyone wants to improve their CrossFit but I bet you never thought you could do it by just practicing your famer’s walk! That’s it, just picking up heavy weighted objects in each hand and walking. The farmer’s walk can be one of the most effective exercises to add into your training program to help you to improve strength and will even carry over into your Olympic lifting.
When attempting a farmer’s walk you will need two thick metal bars with weights on both ends and handles in the middle allowing you to hold the bars and load the weight evenly. Other variables of the farmer’s walk are how long the bar is and the size of the handle, which will affect how stable the bar is when you walk. You will need to consider these variables when deciding how hard you wish to make your farmer’s walk as the longer the bar the harder it will be to stabilize and the heavier it is the more difficult it will be to carry.
It has been suggested that the farmer’s walk can do more to help to expand and improve an athlete than any other movement. You may ask why? The farmer’s walk can help to improve and to develop leg and hip strength, to create a stable back and core strength, and to improve grip strength. This creates a strong body all over which in turn will help you when training for CrossFit.
If you want to add a farmer’s walk into your training program then you may look to see how far you can walk in 60 seconds or complete a single distance as quickly as possible with a set weight. You may also just wish to see what you 1RM for picking weight off the ground might be. Make sure that you rotate the exercise you do every time you perform the farmer’s walk to keep it varied. If you are feeling exceptionally strong on one day then you might want to try to carry a set weight as far as possible, which helps to improve and test your physical and mental performance.
When carrying out the farmer’s walk there are key things to remember:
- Make sure that you are centered in between the weights and your hands are central in the handles. If you are off balance then the weights may fall from side to side making it very hard for you to walk.
- Once you have positioned yourself between the weights you need to make sure that your body is solid making sure that your glutes are tight and that you have braced your core. You will need to push your weight through your heels and lift up your chest as you pull the weight from the floor.
- When you are standing make sure that you are upright and tall with full hip extension and your shoulders pulled back, but be careful not to hyperextend. Carry on squeezing your glutes and look straight ahead.
- When you begin to move make sure that you take small steps, quickly in order to stop your bars swinging.
- When you feel that you cannot go on any more make sure that you place the bars 0down slowly so as not to misplace the weights as this can be of a disadvantage if you have to turn around and go back to the start.
In conclusion, the farmer’s walk has many benefits which can be carried over into improving your training as a CrossFit athlete. If you are still skeptical then why not try adding the farmer’s walk into your training once a week for the next 2 months and see if you notice any changes.