The inside of CrossFit gyms, or “boxes,” as they’re called, don’t look anything like your local neighborhood gym. In the CrossFit Gear Guide we’re going to be defining some of the “contraptions” and “primitive” equipment you might encounter. In addition, we’ll also be introducing new gear and equipment rollouts from major manufacturers of CrossFit equipment.*
We’ll start this column with some basic equipment that may be vaguely familiar if you are coming from the mass market gym world, and address some slight changes in terminology, as well as tell you where you can get similar equipment to stack your garage or home gym, if so inclined.
Most are familiar with weight plates. Those large discs with small holes in the center are called Bumper Plates and are coated with a thick, durable rubber so that they can be dropped without breaking from great heights, such as from arm’s length overhead. The regular iron plates found in most gyms do not withstand the abuse of repeated droppings so well.
Another weighted device that may look familiar to the regular gym goer is the kettlebell. This is the thing that looks like a cannonball with a handle. Most any exercise you can do with a barbell or dumbbell can be applied to a kettlebell. Because of the kettlebell’s simple shape and design, it has a different center of gravity than most gym weights. If you are new to kettlebells, accept that whatever size you pick up will feel heavier than an equivalent sized dumbbell or other weight.
Before the popularity of CrossFit, bumper plates and kettlebells were next to impossible for the casual consumer to find. Now, nearly any decently stocked sporting goods store has the basics to get you started. If you’re serious about really making your home gym investment worthwhile, consider checking out some of the following distributors of good quality equipment.
Lynx Barbell: located on the Northeast side of Atlanta, Lynx is nearly a one stop shop for outfitting your CrossFit styled garage gym. They carry everything from bumper plates to kettlebells, and many accessories in between. Their prices are very competitive, and they offer free shipping on most items, and offer discounts if you are willing to go pick it up yourself. The staff is very friendly and knowledgeable, and their customer service is second to none. If you live in or close to Atlanta, consider calling in your order and making a short drive to pick it up yourself.
Rogue Fitness: an absolute one-stop-shop for all things CrossFit. If you’re looking for some of the bigger equipment, such as various sized rigs, Rogue is definitely the way to go. There is no local distributor in Atlanta, so everything is mail order, which is somewhat of a downside, but they do have absolutely everything, which is always an upside. Being the official supplier of the CrossFit Games, you know that what you’re paying for is the same equipment used by top CrossFitters and boxes worldwide.
Even though you can get anything you could need from these two stores, this is not a complete list of CrossFit distributors, but is enough to get us started with basic familiarization and equipment needs. We’ll be discussing more equipment each week as well as other high quality distributors to furnish our needed equipment.
Make sure you subscribe to the Atlanta Endurance Sports Examiner for more CrossFit Gear Guides, not to mention the 2014 CrossFit Open/Regionals/Games coverage starting on January 15, 2014. CrossFit and all things endurance are covered here.
(*This article is not affiliated with or endorsed by CrossFit HQ, CrossFit affiliates, or any fitness equipment distributors. It is intended for informational purposes only.)