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Try These Tips For a Higher Score on CrossFit Open Workout 23.2


The Open season is into its second week with the workout 23.2 — a two-parter. An incredible aspect of the Open is its inclusivity based on equipment needed for a worldwide online competition.

Over the 13 years of the Open, there have been many events featuring a jump rope, burpees, or a rower test metabolic fitness. However, running was typically absent. The shuttle run appears in part A of 23.2, returning from its appearance in the 2022 Quarterfinals.

The shuttle run adds running to the workout while maintaining the workout’s accessibility in a home gym or affiliate gym, and all within a video frame clip. 2023 is the first year that the shuttle run is being used at the Open level — check out workout 23.2 below, followed by tips to maximize your score:

Image via @patvellner on Instagram

Editor’s note: This article is an op-ed. The views expressed herein are the author’s and don’t necessarily reflect the views of BarBend. Claims, assertions, opinions, and quotes have been sourced exclusively by the author.

Burpee Pull-Ups

The burpee pull-up is not new to Crossfit methodology. The original Glassman CrossFit box featured greats like Annie Sakamoto and Greg Amundson performing the workout “GI Jane,” which is 100 burpee pull-ups for time. Burpee pull-ups should already be in your CrossFit repertoire. 

When doing Burpee pull-ups, control and regulate how and where your body hits the ground and gets up to the pull-up bar. The standard is that the bar needs to just be out of reach of your outstretched arms. With the jump to the bar, you are allowed to use that momentum for your pull-up

There have two options as you jump:

 Jump to the bar to a dead hang position, and then use your kip to get your chin above the bar.
Use the momentum of your jump to catch the pull-up bar with bent arms, and follow that momentum to get your chin above the bar.

Pick a pull-up bar that is just out of reach of your hands so that the jump and pull works for you. If the bar is too far out of reach, then you will spend excess effort on the jump, potentially catching the bar straight arms and need to kip.

The fastest and most efficient way is jumping and pulling all in one motion. However, if you don’t have the strength to pull out of your jump, use the dead hang and kip. If you don’t have a kipping pull-up from a dead-hang position, then set up at a distance from the bar where you can jump into it and use a pendulum swing to assist with your kip. That horizontal momentum can aid your kip.

For burpees, stepping up rather than popping your hips up to a pike position can save energy. This is not a time for strict push-ups on your burpees. If anything, think about doing a knee push-up to reduce the weight on your push. It will reduce fatigue and bring your chest up enough to step one leg forward and then up with the other leg.

When coming down off the pull-up bar, either drop to the ground or step back using as little energy as possible on the negative. You can change the tempo of the curpee if you start to tire but do everything you can never stop moving.

The Shuttle Run 

This shuttle run is nothing like the suicide sprints you did on the high school basketball court. Efficiency and tempo is the name of the game. Due to the short 25-foot distance, you aren’t going to reach any sort of top speed. but with a 15-minute time frame, the best course of action is to pick a pace that you can hold for the entire event. 

Each shuttle run has 20 turns at the line. Before you turn around to head back, you must make sure that both feet and one hand touch behind the line. To preserve the hinge position and the posterior chain, bend forward in the frontal plane rather than using some side bend — ensure your body is completely turned and facing the return direction.

Following this methodology allows you to use the larger, more powerful joints and muscles. Bending to the side uses stabilizers and will fatigue you faster. Have a pace that doesn’t decrease so that you can pick it up in the last two minutes or so. If you can do that, you’ll know you held a correct pace through this event.

Don’t Look at the Clock!

This is the type of workoutwhere the clock can be detrimental. Everybody will feel like they are crushing it around the four to five-minute mark. Then they will look up at the clock and realize that they have 10 minutes to go — it will seem like forever.

This could take the wind out of one’s sails. Stay focused on the reps and remain in the moment. Don’t think ahead to the long set of burpees or what you think your thruster weight might be. Concentrate on making your burpees as efficient and as metronome-like as possible, while maintaining a consistent shuttle-run pace through the entire event.

Have your judge give you a five-minute warning so you can pick it up and try to negative split the last few minutes.

[Related: 2023 CrossFit Open Workout 23.1 Results — Emma Cary and Roman Khrennikov Top the Leaderboards]

The Thruster

Part B of 23.2 is a five-minute window to establish a one-rep max thruster. Before starting the event, warm-up with the barbell to establish some muscle movement patterns for some heavy lifting. Decide if you will squat clean into your thruster or power clean into a standing position before adjusting hand and foot placement for the thruster.  The deciding factor for which option to choose should do is based on comfort level coming out of the bottom of a squat clean.

Warm up to about 90 perent of your one-rep max. Decide what your opening lift should be and then what your goal lift is. Pick a weight that will allow you to score your first lift confidently — think 75 percent of your one-rep max as you’re opening left. You will have time for three to four lifts after your opening so don’t rush.

Have all the weights you need to make your jumps pre-staged. A general increase plan would be starting at 75 percent to 85 percent to 95 percent. Hopefully, this progression will secure a good score and potentially enable a PR attempt. Adjust as needed based on how you feel coming out of Part A. Be conscious to not be overly aggressive on your weight jumps. Missing a rep is time-consuming and a huge energy sap. 

[Related: Community Gyms Coalition Launches “Fitness Is Essential” Campaign]

Wrapping Up

Workout 23.2 is a workout that everyone is able to do. Burpee pull-ups can be uncomfortable, but everybody can move to the ground and get back up. A jumping pull-up is a scaled movement to our basic gymnastic pull-up. Everyone can shuffle back and forth in 25-foot sections. Finally, the thruster is based on you and your abilities and all lifts is legitimate — everything from a PVC pipe to a 300-pound attempt, as we saw from Roman Khrennikov.

Good luck, and we’ll see you for more tips in the Open’s final week!

Featured image: @crossfitgames on Instagram

The post Try These Tips For a Higher Score on CrossFit Open Workout 23.2 appeared first on BarBend.

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