Rumor has it that children are not suppose to heavy lift weights because it will stunt the growth of their height and other growth plates. This is a perception that parents have been led to believe by misinformation and poor research. If we look at this from a non-scientific based idea, do you as a parent ask your child to help carry groceries, laundry baskets, tools, chairs, bicycles…etc? So what is the difference between lifting a five pound weighted ball and a hammer? We as humans were meant to do work. In other words, lift and move objects, sometimes and mostly, heavy objects around in space. So why not let your child learn how to do this correctly inside a controlled environment so when they are asked to do this in their own world they can do so safely and effectively?
The objective in a Crossfit Kids or Crossfit Teens class is to teach students and athletes how to lift objects safely and effectively. We as Coaches know that technique is far more important than, “How much weight can you lift?” This is a question that is driven by ego and is constantly asked by outside social pressures. We as Coaches are continually trying to address this with our athletes by instilling that technique will allow for bigger weights rather than simply adding more and more weight.
Not only does weight lifting and Crossfit teach children how to properly and safely move and lift weights, it gives them the skills required to be healthy and fit. Strength training is beneficial for muscular development, improving motor performance skills, and actually promotes the decrease in bone degeneration later in life. Which in fact, makes children less prone to injuries. Lifting weights and Crossfit will also boost an young athletes self confidence, improve social skills, self esteem and can help to fight depression.
Injuries related to weight training and Crossfit can be mostly related to poor supervision and programming. This is why at Crossfit Progression and CFP Strength we focus on good mechanics and low weight reps in a highly controlled and supervised circumstance. We emphasize and specialize in body weight exercises that train the whole body to do real work in real life. By adding strength programming that focuses on form and technique we can train our youth to be strong, healthy and fit. Because whether our children are lifting a 15# barbell or doing box jumps inside a gym, they are still going to lift 15# back packs and jump on and off the bus outside the gym. So what is the difference?