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Pistols and Parlor Tricks

By avelyne | In Uncategorized | on August 16, 2013

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If you followed the 2013 Games, you probably saw some funky looking squats during The Cinco 1.  They came right after the heavy deadlifts but before the handstand walks.  Yes, I’m referring to the one legged squats the Games competitors gutted through.  But wait those weren’t just regular pistols, because we know they don’t do anything easy at Games.  Those were weighted pistols at 53# for men and 35# for women!  Well guess what?  You get to challenge yourself today and try those babies out!

Pistols are a unique movement that allow an athlete to test several areas of their overall fitness which include balance, flexibility, and strength.  It takes balance to stand and lower yourself on one leg, flexibility in all leg joints, and the strength to maintain control as you drive up and back to a standing position.  With pistols, it becomes clearly evident if one leg is stronger than the other.  Yet, you can also perform pistols to strengthen that weaker leg.  Pistols are a skill that must be practiced and it may take several progressions in order to properly execute one.

Over at T-Nation, there’s a great article that details the benefits as well as downsides to the pistol.  The article goes on to provide tips for a box pistol, an intermediate progression to a pistol.  You can check it out here.

The video below is from CrossFit CBD which shows an athlete performing standard pistols, weighted pistols, as well as a few neat “parlor tricks”.


WOD 08.16.2013

Deadlift 1 x 5

Then:

– 1K Row

– 50 Sit ups

– 30 Weighted pistols (53/35)

– 10 Muscle ups (sub 4 rope climbs)

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