Barbell Maintenance

You may have noticed on Wednesday during your snatches that the barbells were more "spinny" (I think that's the word someone used in class) than usual - it wasn't your imagination!  Yes, your snatching probably got better as well... but Sarah also serviced all of the gym's barbells this week to get them spinning like new.  She took them all apart, cleaned out the build-up, lubricated the bushings & bearings, and put them back together.  You may notice that the tape markers are also replaced, indicating their newly serviced status:  

Old tape marker on top, new tape marker on the bottom. Boom!

Sarah doing her thing. Apparently glove are for noobs.

Barbell Etiquette

We heart Coach Hillary.  The other day as a class was ending she told the entire group that she heard a few empty barbells hitting the floor when people were unloading their plates, and that every time she hears that sound it makes her die a little inside.

Me too, Hill.  Me too.

Here are a few friendly reminders regarding barbell use and etiquette in the gym.  A few items can go a long way for helping to keep the barbells spinning well (and lasting a long time), and you and your fellow athletes safe.  We're fortunate at Arena Ready to have mindful and courteous athletes/members, but a little reminding never hurts anyone.

First, regarding the barbells and bumper plates themselves:

  1. Please do not drop an empty (unloaded) bar, or allow a loaded bar to skip into the wall or pull-up rig.  Yes, I know they drop empty bars in the training room at the World Championships, but like many things you've seen on Youtube that you shouldn't do yourself, this move is not OK.  When we coach at Nationals or Americans some of the lifters do it there too, and they all look like assholes.  Dropping the empty bar breaks the bushing/bearing thereby rendering it unable to spin during the lifts (snatches, cleans, etc), and that can present some major safety issues for athletes.  What's the big deal about the bars spinning you may ask?  Try snatching or cleaning with a cheap bar from a commercial gym and let me know how that goes for you (kidding, don't actually do that).
  2. Wipe off any blood, skin, excessive sweat, etc with a disinfectant wipe immediately after barbell use.  And if you notice you're bleeding during a workout please tend to it immediately (i.e. before continuing the WOD) - there is Bactine spray, bandages, and athletic tape next to the gym desk.  Just let a coach know you need them and we're happy to help.  Contrary to what you might see on social media, bleeding all over the place during a workout is not badass, it's just gross... and unsafe.
  3. Put the collars (AKA "clips") on for all your lifts, and load the heaviest plates on the inside. 
  4. Use as few plates as possible.  I know it's fun to load seven 10s on each side, but it makes you look like a noob - so please roll out the bigger plates when you take your jumps in weight.  This is where it helps to lift with a buddy and share the task of loading and unloading plates. 
  5. Dropping a bar from overhead loaded with just a pair of 10s will eventually bend and break the 10s, so please refrain from doing so.  If you have a bar loaded with just a pair of 10s then lower it to thigh-level under control and then drop it.  Too tired to do so?  Then it's too heavy for you.
  6. The Olympic-style weightlifting kilo plates (think rainbow colors) and accessory equipment on/near the platforms should be used for only that - Olympic weightlifting on the platforms (when they're down).
  7. There is an Eleiko competition bar on the floor behind the weightlifting platforms.  If you have competed in a national-level Olympic weightlifting meet, or have posted a competition total high enough to do so, then feel free to use it for your lifts.  If not, please leave it alone (yes, it's supposed to be stored lying flat on the floor like that).  If I see it leaning against a wall vertically, racked in a squat rack, stored on the wall racks with the CrossFit/Rogue bars, or being used in a CrossFit WOD my head may actually explode and the gym will thus be closed indefinitely.   

Second, regarding lifting the barbells in class with your fellow athletes:

  1. Don't ghost ride the bar.  We drop (loaded) barbells like ladies and gentlemen at Arena Ready.  Control it down or follow it with open hands and settle it on the first bounce.  People who ghost ride bars in CrossFit are like people who drive big ass trucks in order to compensate for lacking in other areas.  They should wear T-shirts that say "My ghost riding barbell expresses what my lifts cannot."
  2. During a lifting session or barbell class try to avoid walking directly in front of someone taking a big lift.  It's distracting and shows poor form.  Safety-wise please also avoid walking next to, or directly behind, someone taking a big lift.  In CrossFit WODs the etiquette is a bit different, since we're on the clock and often have to quickly transition between different movements - in this case we simply ask that you be a good neighbor and look out for one another.
  3. High five or fist bump your fellow athletes when they hit a PR.  Or clap.  Or cheer and shout.  Then tell them to hit the PR Gong.  After all this is supposed to be fun, and we're lucky enough to have a bunch of cool and interesting people to train with and become better.
  4. Anytime someone hits the PR Gong (and you hear that unmistakable sound) you MUST immediately stop what you're doing and respectfully bow, with hands pressed together.  Bow to respect the PR.  Bow to respect the hard work it took for your fellow athlete to achieve the PR.  Bow because dammit it's funny as hell when a room full of people in a noisy ass gym stops everything and bows at the same time.  Coaches reserve the right to issue burpee penalties to non-bowing athletes.   

Any questions?  Feel free to ask away or pick our brains at the gym.  We are always happy to help and I'd rather you ask us than wonder if something is acceptable or not.

Happy lifting!

WOD for 07-29-16:

Alternating EMOM For 5 Rounds (10 Minutes):

MINUTE 1: 2-5 Unbroken Muscle-ups

MINUTE 2: 3 Thrusters, climbing  




"Thruster Buster 2.0"

15 Minutes For Completion @ 75/55 lbs:

MINUTE 1: 15 Thrusters, then 1 Burpee

MINUTE 2: 14 Thrusters, then 2 Burpees

MINUTE 3: 13 Thrusters, then 3 Burpees


MINUTE 15: 1 Thruster, then 15 Burpees


If you cannot complete the work within the given minute the workout is over.  Score by minutes completed plus any reps in a final partially completed minute (e.g. "7 minutes + 11 reps)".

(Compare to "Thruster Buster" from 09-30-15 which started at 13+1 instead of 15+1)