Back to School is Here: Time for New Workout Gear!

You may wonder, "Why do certain people wear so much “stuff” during the workouts?" Furthermore, sometimes they even change into/out of more stuff between portions of the class. The short answer is, safety. Some people may get coaxed into buying stuff from their favorite Instagram trend setter, or simply, someone in the gym has something and you feel like you need it as well. This month, we're focusing on accessing what gear you need versus want; why/how it would benefit you.

In today’s modern impulse driven market, there is literally something for everything. From a magnetic rack-attaching phone mount for WOD selfies to a small step stool to help you. With that being said, let’s take a moment (or blog post) to work our way from head-to-toe and look at the things we would (movement professionals) argue/suggest would be helpful for your fitness curriculum.


The Head

• Headbands

Lots of people make them and yes, they work! Some would go so far as to call them sweat bands (as they can be on your head, arm/wrist or leg). Their purpose is to absorb sweat before it affects a more distal/vital extremity of purpose ie. Seeing, sweaty heads/feet etc.

The Wrist & Hands

• Wraps

These come in many different shapes and sizes, but essentially, the wrists were not made to bear the load we expose it to in “heavier” lifting. Wrist wraps create stability around the wrist joint, making it act more as a fixed lever, and thus reducing the tendency for your simple cuboidal bones to collide with one another causing cartilage damage/contusions. For those who experience wrist discomfort in the front rack or overhead position, these will help significantly. These in no way make your wrists “weaker.” Your wrist “strength” comes from your forearms, not your wrists.

• Straps

These are the dangling tassels of cloth people wrap/loop around their wrists and attach them to barbell for longer more complicated lifts ie. Heavy/high rep dead lifts, cycling through snatch work etc… This will not directly “weaken” your grip strength so long as intermittently you use conventional non-hook grip on your regular barbell work.

• Gymnastic Grips

These are the palm pads you see people wearing that loop through a few fingers to protect their palms during higher volume pull-up cycles. We recommend these if you find your rough callused skin annoying.

• Thumb Tape

This is a stretchy tape that you wrap around your thumbs, if you apply the hook-grip during your barbell movements. This will protect your thumb skin from becoming callused.


• Neoprene Sleeves

Neoprene is a type of fabric that induces insulation and traps heat. This is the material used in the making of wet suits. This will allow the elbow more blood flow and better recovery during and after lifting.


• Weight Belts

Weight belts are wonderful pieces of equipment if you’re using them for the right reasons. Weight belts help you create intra-abdominal pressure and as a result, strengthening your actual “core” muscles. The deeper muscles beneath the outer ab/back muscles you see. They do not weaken the trunk, but rather, eliminate overuse of the abdominal flexors and trunk extensors.


• Knee Sleeves

Neoprene is a type of fabric that induces insulation and traps heat. This is the material used in the making of wet suits. This will allow the knees more blood flow and better recovery during and after lifting. It is common to order knee sleeves a size smaller to also provide “tension” and thus knee support as well.

• Wraps

Wraps are long (1 meter - 3 meter) pieces of cloth use to wrap around the knee to provide stability and support of maximal loads.


• Weightlifting Shoes

Weightlifting shoes typically have a solid sole/base and a raised (.25 - .75”) heel. This allows the foot to have direct drive response during the lift, as tennis/sneaker shoes will have a more elastic medium as the sole. The elevated heel aids ankle in-mobility, and helps to offset the forward lean created during the three hinge flexion during the squat.

So there you have it! These are the main items you will see being worn at the box. The short cut reference to find a pretty broad selection of all of these products is As a reminder, these items are not a necessity to follow our program. They simply help to aid with tightness and soreness from use. None of this equipment will offset poor nutrition or recovery, nice try.

How the Humble Beast CrossFit Programming Differs from the Reebok CrossFit Games


Like every CrossFit gym worldwide, there is a prefix or suffix to CrossFit. The Reebok CrossFit games are no different. Each of the ~14,075 CrossFit affiliates worldwide are given the freedom to freely adapt the flexible and ambiguous definition of CrossFit (Constantly varied, functional movement, delivered with high/relative intensity). “The Reebok CrossFit games” are no different. If you simply look at the Reebok CrossFit games as just that, another, exclusive affiliate, you will easily see that it is not by any means, right or wrong, but rather, unique and designed for a unique purpose and goal. 

The goals of our CrossFit affiliate- Humble Beast CrossFit are vastly different than the goals of the “Reebok CrossFit games” affiliate. Our foundation is a 4-month periodized program approach that delivers organized skill training, strength application and complementary conditioning.  At the Reebok CrossFit games affiliate, the “affiliate” is hypothetically only open for 5-days (the length of the competition), in which time, the goal is to push the clients (qualified athletes) to their absolute physical threshold/limits.

Some of you may be aware that we as a gym just finished month (4) of our 4-month periodized cycle, also known as “max month”. Think about this; trying to squeeze max month into 5 days, and then expand on that exponentially and viola! you have the Reebok CrossFit games affiliate methodology. 

So then, what do these athletes do when they are NOT at this prestigious affiliate?  Well, they follow an organized strength and conditioning program, with absolute scalability. Moral of the story, what these athletes do at this theoretical “affiliate” is unsustainable over the long term. Simply DM (direct message) any of them through the gram (Instagram). They will surely respond that those were the hardest 5 days of their year. So, partner, team, social group up and watch the games. Let’s even talk about the games, but let’s not try to recreate the Reebok CrossFit games in our daily fitness and training regimen. 

Percentage Lifting: Why?

There is a famous saying, and by famous I mean, not really famous but rather, something ignorant people say.. the saying goes: “ I ain’t got time for percentages!!!”

So here’s the scoop, training percentages have come about from years and years of empirical trials with recorded data, but never situated into a formal study, thus still relatively “unprofessional.”  Hundreds of thousands of weight-lifters found that, similarly to growing as a youth to adult, physiological change takes time.  Thus, the application or marginal stress introduction over similar/repetitive movement patterns. 

What I know is, muscle phasing is real and it responds very well to good mechanical articulation and even better to disciplined programming (stress) and recovery (rest). I also know, from doing this for years, certain percentage gains are possible and certain ones are not.  I also know, people come from different athletic and genetic backgrounds and have different allostatic stressors (look it up), and thus, we use percentage ranges. What I have found is, patience breeds progress and impatience exaggerates ego and ego rhymes with injury. 

What’s the take away? Follow percentages, listen to the coaches and trust the progress. Think of anything in your life that you have gotten reasonably good at and ask yourself, “how rushed was the process?” The slower you physically move through our strength movements and the slower you increase percentages, the healthier your body will be and the more efficiently it will move. The better you understand the movement, demonstrate good ROM, and lay a large fascia foundation, the more success and fun you will have during max month. And that’s a promise! 

Below is a fun 3-dimensional picture of what our “periodized” program looks like.  This is simply a pictorial metaphor for the body in terms of need for foundational work over time in relation to peak output and potential.


My Personal Goal to Motivate You at Humble Beast CrossFit

This blog post was written by Coach Kevin Higgins.

When I joined Humble Beast CrossFit in October 2014, I had zero clue on how to do squat. Literally, I couldn’t squat, bench press, power clean, deadlift, snatch or push press. Even prior to 2014, when I belonged to a globo gym, I’d go at some strange, off-peak hour, so no one would see me attempt to lift because 1) I had no idea what I was doing, 2) I was intimidated by the bro and bro-ette’s, and 3) I cared too much about what others would think of my fitness. I’m certain I carried all of these insecurities (and probably more) with me into Day 1 at Humble Beast CrossFit.