Why do we do loaded carries in our workouts?
• Build stability in all three planes of motion.
• Foundational movement pattern (local motion) that helps us get out of the sagittal plane which many programs place far too much emphasis on.
• Improve the aerobic abilities of fast-twitch muscle fiber, which means higher power output can be sustained for longer.
• “Neutral” movement, meaning that they cause minimal muscle damage and are very easy to recover from.
• Have arguably THE MOST carry-over to real life application than anything else we do in the gym. Particularly the Single Arm variations we discuss below.
In today’s world people are chronically stressed, and a fitness program that provides too much stress will eventually produce negative results. It’s not a question of if, but a question of when. One of our main strategies at No Excuses CrossFit is also to “trick” people into thinking they’re working harder than they are, and loaded carries fit that bill extremely well, in addition to providing the benefits listed above.
They can be included as a heavy “finisher” on a strength day – IE 4:00 Max 25 Meter Single Arm Front Rack Carry, OR as part of longer conditioning circuit – IE AMRAP 30:00 10 Box Jump Step-downs, 10 Up-downs, 10 Cal Bike, 100 Meter light Farmer Carry.
Of course there are lots of carry variations, Overhead, Front Rack, Lateral, and Offset either with a single weight, or a heavier weight on one side. These offset variations are a staple in our program as they improve core stability against an off axis weight and I would argue have the largest carry-over to strength demands we see day to day; picking up kids, luggage, doing yard-work etc.