Pages Menu
Categories Menu

Posted by on Apr 4, 2013 in #AskGrizzly, Crossfit, Lifting and Crossfit, Master, Mobility, Music and Rants, Rant, WOD

Crossfit Open 13.5 Efficiency Tips

Crossfit Open 13.5 Efficiency Tips

I’m not sure why – but this week instead of one video KStar, Diane Fu, and Carl all did separate videos, I’ll embed them all then summarize main points below.

And then of course come’s the Barbell Shrugged guys – back with more “tips”


  1. A wider stance will shorten the range of motion and save your quads some, make sure you can safely hit parallel.
  2. Keep your elbows high and let the bar roll onto those fingers in the front rack, gripping the bar too tightly will kill your arms and pull you forward
  3. Wear your Weightlifting shoes if you have them, staying organized through the thruster will net you more than the extra weight on the pull-ups
  4. The upright demand of the torso on the thruster is high, pulling forward will cost you not only on the squat portion but will leave you disorganized when it’s time to put the weight overhead, keeping a big chest will save your shoulders
  5. Tempo will be huge here, find a rhythm that you can maintain good positions, catch as much momentum coming out of the overhead position as possible, drive out of the hole smoothly being too explosive will put you on your toes
  6. Don’t rest in the rack, keep as much stored energy as you can from that overhead drive to push you into the next rep, similar to a wall ball you want to ride the weight down in good positions, resting in the rack is inefficient


  1. Keeping a neutral chin will always lead to better arm and torso positions, craning with the neck is a recipe for broken shoulders
  2. Find whatever grip works and stick with it, thumb over or outward hook grip; don’t waste time during the workout trying to figure out what works best.
  3. KStar always mentions torque – in this case it means keeping a strong external rotation through the negative part of the kip so that when you hit that bottom lockout there’s some stored torque that will help you into the next rep

Efficiency & Technical Movement

Really the only thing to mention here is pacing. This all comes down to your ‘Fran’ time. If you have a sub 3:00 Fran, why are you reading this? Seriously though, the goal for you is to control that extra 30 or so seconds and save some gas for the 4-8 minutes. If you’re right on a 3:30-4:00 Fran then you just need to bust ass and get to the 4:00 mark and get those extra 4 minutes to work. If you’re above a 4:00, then your goal should be to move as fast as possible and damn the consequences.


Aerobically if you’re shooting for a 4 minute workout, warm up that intensity, I would do some Tabata rowing for maybe 3 or 4 minutes working up to a 90-95% effort. You really want to be able to come out of the gate swinging on this short of a workout. If you’re looking more to the 8-12 minute range your warm-up can be a little more aerobic, maybe a 5 minute row at a solid 70% pace, about 2:00/500m.

On the mobility side of things, of course it will depend where you are tight, but some soft tissue work through the tricep, lat, and t-spine will buy you a lot of slack in the thruster. I would also add some shoulder external rotation mob’s to make sure that you’re ready for the volume of overhead work and pull-ups. That amount of work should not be taken lightly especially on such a hyper-mobile joint like the shoulder. Spend whatever time is left buying yourself enough slack through the ankles/calves and hips to maintain good form through the thruster, focus on an upright torso and keeping torque through the whole phase, don’t it off with a butt wink, hit parallel and bounce out.

Good luck everyone – it’s been a great open!

Leave a Reply