This would be an example of the opposite of virtuosity.

This would be an example of the opposite of virtuosity.

The word virtuosity has always been kind of funny to me when it comes to crossfit, however yesterday I was thinking about it more and decided to talk more about the concept.  The definitions of virtuosity and virtuoso are primarily around the arts and performance arts.  wikipedia: The defining element of virtuosity is the performance ability of the musician in question, who is capable of displaying feats of skill well above the average performer.  I believe watching what some people can do with their bodies is absolutely art.  Think about a wide receiver keeping an 1/8th of an inch of toe on both feet in bounds while twisting in air with one hand outreached to make the game winning catch.  Or think back to those iconic shots of Jordan going in for a dunk from what seemed like the three point line.  Now I realize some push ups in the middle of a little workout you are doing before you go home to make dinner for the family and get ready for work the next day doesn’t seem so artistic.  So let’s look at how crossfit.com uses the word.   Crossfit.com: In this 2005 open letter to CrossFit trainers, Coach Greg Glassman discusses the importance of virtuosity, defined in gymnastics as “performing the common uncommonly well.”    Doing things uncommonly well will also yield uncommon results and results is what we are all about.  These results can come in any form, increased strength, increased work capacity, increased self esteem, improved health measurement stats, joy, and the list can go on.  I know that everyone joins CFSL for a reason, they are looking to improve something and they are looking for help to make this improvement.  To really achieve these goals or make these improvements happen, virtuosity must be our focus.  Doing high intensity workouts like our daily WODs I think cause us to start to think the faster I go or the more I feel like I am going to fall out, the better the results.  It some cases, this is true.   Just watch the open WODs and how much we will be pushing some of the competitors who we know have the physical ability to perform at these levels.  A lot of the time, however, going as fast as possible ends up with form going way down and no signs of virtuosity in sight.  This is where I would like to challenge all of you.  Something as simple as a push up.  Your goal is always to be as perfect with them as possible and the only way to get there is to demand the highest ability from yourself at all times.  Find the proper modification to make sure your form is perfect and gradually progress.  This is where the results are found.  Perfecting movement patterns, properly stressing the musculature, and demanding excellence from ourselves, that is where the magic is.  I don’t care if you are starting on the wall or can do a triple clapping push up.  Where ever you are, make it excellent.

Thursday’s WOD:

Strength:

Deadlift 3x8reps, compare to 1/16/14 and do slightly more.  Otherwise, 65-70% of best.

Conditioning:

5 Rounds

12 Weighted Step Ups  (Rx+: 12 Pistols alternating)

12 Burpees

*choose the weight for the step ups, go as heavy as you can tolerate with proper form.

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2 Comments

mandy · February 19, 2014 at 9:44 pm

why is mae squatting like that?

Sir Beard McBeardington · February 20, 2014 at 9:35 am

Virtuosity is also a really bad movie from the 90’s. It almost ruined the word / meaning.

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