Should you do CrossFit for paintball?
I’ve been getting this question a lot lately so I figured I would write up a little review of the pros and cons for CrossFit for the paintball athlete. First off, if you don’t know what crossfit is, it’s a high intensity, fast pace training style originally designed by the Navy Seals. It involves a lot of Olympic lifts such as the deadlift, squat, clean and jerk, overhead press, pull-ups, bench press and so forth. You are always moving fairly heavy weight and the goal is to complete “x” amount of reps/rounds for time.
Now looking at the given program you can say yes, this is a great system for paintball because it will condition your cardiovascular system and build strength. That’s what any circuit style training system will do. I do prescribe many circuit style training systems to my clients looking to improve on their paintball game. However, CrossFit is dangerous if performed improperly and it is very easy to do so! If I told you to squat 180lb 25xs, then do 15 pull-ups, then run 1 mile and then repeat this for 5 rounds and do it as fast as you can. I promise you, by the 2nd or 3rd round your form will get sloppy as the body gets fatigued. When you have bad form, performing dangerous power lifting movements is when you can seriously hurt yourself.
The last thing you want to do is injure yourself during training and set back your paintball career. The reason you started training in the first place was to improve your game and now you are riding the bench for three events because you pulled your back doing sloppy deadlifts.
My advice is to you
Focus on keeping proper form when performing any circuit style training system. Machines are great to use to help you hold good posture and form when the body is getting fatigued. If you are going to use free weights, lower the weight so that you can keep good form. If you are going to lift heavy in an uncontrolled environment such as free weights. I recommend you give yourself as much rest as you need to make sure the sets you perform are correct.