“CrossFit Total”

CrossFit Benchmark WOD

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  • Sum of the Best of Each Lift
  • Back Squat
  • Shoulder Press
  • Deadlift

Athlete gets 3 attempts at each lift. Weight must increase after each successful attempt at each movement. Weight may not be decreased after first attempt. A failed rep counts as an attempt. Take back squat and shoulder press (aka: strict press) from the weight rack.

There is no time limit for each lift or for the length of the session in which they are all performed, but they must all be performed during one session (i.e., athlete cannot leave the area to rest or perform other activities between the three lifts).

Scaling
Beginning athletes should treat today as an opportunity to practice and get comfortable with heavy lifts. This should not be a super big grind. The objective for all lifts is to get 3 reps with optimal mechanics at a very heavy load, not the heaviest load. The number of reps allows the coach to catch any big deviation in mechanics at a sub-maximal weight.

Intermediate
Back squat, heavy 5 reps
Shoulder press, heavy 5 reps
Deadlift, heavy 5 reps

Beginner (A)
Back squat 3-3-1-1 reps
Shoulder press 3-3-1-1 reps
Deadlift 3-3-1-1 reps

Beginner (B) – for athletes new to the movements
5 sets 0:30 Bottom of Squat Hold
7 Tempo Back Squats @ 4211 (4 seconds on descent, 2 second pause at bottom, 1 second ascent, 1 second pause at top)
5 sets 0:30 Overhead Barbell Holds
5 Tempo Strict Press @ 4012
(4 seconds on descent, 0 second pause at bottom, 1 second ascent, 2 second pause at top)
5 sets 0:30 active hold from pull-up bar
5 Pause
Deadlifts with slow decent (2 second pause one inch from the ground, 2 second pause at knee, 1 second pause at top). Slow the decent, prioritize the initiation of the movements by sending the butt far back (hinging).

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Background: The "CrossFit Total" is CrossFit's approach to testing absolute strength, deeming these movements the "three most effective lifts in existence for developing and testing functional strength." It was first posted in the CrossFit Journal on December 1, 2006.

"The CrossFit Total reflects an athlete's functional strength capacity more accurately than any other test." - Mark Rippetoe

The CrossFit Total is the sum of the best of three attempts at the squat, the press, and the deadlift. All three lifts are done while standing on the floor. They require minimal and inexpensive equipment. They are not technique-dependent to the extent of the Olympic lifts, yet they require technical proficiency beyond mere passing familiarity. They are safe when performed correctly, since they can all be performed without spotters—alone in a garage if necessary.

Indended Stimulus: Today think about this: the Total is designed to be the most efficient and elegant stimulus a barbell can give you to elicit maximal strength. In the conjunction of these three lifts, the column and the pelvis have to work hard to keep the integrity of the system under maximal loads. This combined with the fact that the benefits of lifting the heaviest loads every so often is necessary for the complete development of all athletes explains why we have the Total today and we why we do it every so often. It also tells you what we want from this workout: we want the heaviest loads we can safely handle for all three lifts. (source: Juan Acevedo)

Warm-Up
General Warm-Up
5 minutes of double- or triple-under practice.
then,
3 rounds with an empty barbell of:
5 deadlifts
5 power cleans
5 should presses
5 bent over rows
5 back squats

Specific Warm-Up
For each lift use the following schema:
5 reps at 30% of 1RM
3 reps at 50% of 1RM
2 reps at 60% of 1RM
1 reps at 65% of 1RM
1 reps at 75% of 1RM
1 reps at 85% of 1RM

First attempt in the workout should be about 90-95% of 1 rep max.

See also (related): "CrossFit Total II" and "CrossFit Football Total"

The "CrossFit Total" was also featured as workout #3 on day one of the 2018 CrossFit Games.
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