If you’ve tried out CrossFit fitness programs and they aren’t for you, don’t worry! There are lots of helpful alternatives to CrossFit that replace difficult exercises. Here are some of the best, top 10 alternatives to CrossFit that you will enjoy.
When CrossFit is too demanding, try replacing it with hill sprints, kickboxing, or tennis! Some people like to replace CrossFit by attending a local specialty gym or by using a Peloton spin bike and app. On the other hand, running, yoga, or jumping rope may be the best alternatives for you.
What are more of the top fitness alternatives to CrossFit? What are the pros and cons of CrossFit? Let’s go over what to know and think about when it comes to finding alternatives to CrossFit workouts.
What is CrossFit?
CrossFit is often defined by a mixture of heavy strength lifting, powerlifting, and assorted calisthenics. All of these exercise movements are combined into one high-intensity interval circuit. Usually, multiple circuits make a CrossFit program. CrossFit workouts are more often than not exhausting but quick.
What are the Pros of CrossFit?
The big positives of CrossFit are that it has a strong following and community, an exciting and invigorating atmosphere, and healthy competition. There is a worldwide network of people who practice and enjoy CrossFit every day. The community is very invested, fit, positive, and hardworking!
The exciting atmosphere of CrossFit is also a draw for most people. CrossFit enthusiasts, coaches, and trainers will make you feel pumped and they won’t be afraid to tell you to step it up and work even harder. This is ideal for those who need an extra push of positivity and energy to get them to the gym or to boost their motivation. There’s usually high-energy music and people yelling while they train with CrossFit.
Finally, CrossFit also encourages helpful competition. Whenever you see other fellow CrossFitters pushing themselves and going the extra mile, it will naturally encourage you to fit an extra set in. Working with CrossFit regimens and with individuals who are as committed to good health as you are will help you to keep striving to meet your exercise goals.
What are the Cons of CrossFit?
Just like with any form of exercise, there are naturally some downsides to CrossFit. Some of these negative elements could turn you off of the past time entirely, and encourage you to choose a different form of exercise instead.
One of the cons of CrossFit is the distinct lack of personalization. Even though CrossFit does a lot to motivate and push people, some individuals complain that it doesn’t offer enough opportunities for personalized or customized training programs. This is because CrossFit is by default geared to be used in a group setting.
There usually is not a “one size fits all” type of program for people all the time, which means that beginners may feel pushed too hard while advanced athletes may feel held back in CrossFit groups.
Secondly, CrossFit can sometimes lack programs. Individuals who are working out need individualized workout programs that meet their unique needs and goals. Since everyone has different needs and weaknesses, the lack of programming in CrossFit can be a real dealbreaker. Most CrossFit instructors do not program and instead, just follow the information posted on CrossFit.com and share that with their various clients.
Finally, CrossFit also usually doesn’t have enough scalability for some users. Scalability is when a workout or exercise can be adjusted to lower or increase its difficulty level. Again, this can be annoying and a hindrance to you if you are a beginner to working out and cannot find a scaled CrossFit program, and it can be a problem if you are an exercise expert but are held back by limited CrossFit programs that don’t push you.
Sometimes it is wiser to pick and choose from the CrossFit alternatives below to form your personalized workout program that suits your strengths and weaknesses.
If the pros of CrossFit don’t seem worth it and the cons seem too much to put up with, fear not! There are plenty of amazing alternatives to CrossFit listed below that you will love to take on.
Hill sprints are extremely effective exercises since they burn more calories per minute than any other exercise. This type of workout is a terrific alternative for high-intensity CrossFit exercises. These unique sprints offer a very low risk of injury. They are safer to perform than sprints on flat ground and they only require that you have access to a good pair of running shoes and a hill or inclined plane.
If you are a beginning athlete or are new to hill sprints, start by sprinting up small hills. Graduate and move to longer and steeper hills as you sprint more and become fitter.
You must remember to warm up before you attempt any hill sprints. If you don’t warm up, your risk of straining your calves or hamstrings skyrockets.
One of the best replacements for CrossFit is kickboxing! This is because if you kickbox you will give your whole body a workout and burn tons of calories all at once. People can burn as much as 500 calories during just 30 minutes of kickboxing moves. This type of exerce also boosts your muscular endurance, so plenty of people find the hobby worth the time and effort.
If you check out your local gyms and fitness centers, most will offer convenient kickboxing classes. Most kickboxing classes will never be as expensive as CrossFit programs or classes and you can continue to use the skills and lessons learned from them.
Make sure to research and look into online kickboxing programs and kickboxing books to see if kickboxing at the gym or home is for you instead of CrossFit.
Local Specialty Gyms
Instead of enrolling in CrossFit programs, try out your nearby local specialty gyms! These locations are usually independently owned and can be discovered and used all over the US. Local specialty gyms usually abide by similar training methodologies as CrossFit does, but they often don’t use CrossFit in their name since they choose to not be affiliated with CrossFit.
Find local specialty gyms near you by doing some online searching. When you find functional training gyms or HIIT gyms near your home, you can easily use their instructors and programs to replace the exercise that CrossFit offers.
When gyms don’t have CrossFit branding, they usually carry lower, more reasonable prices since you and other clients are not paying for the official branded name of CrossFit.
Plus, if you want the lifting aspect of CrossFit implemented into your workouts and not a daily WOD, or Workout of the Day, then local weightlifting or powerlifting gyms are for you. Most any city or location has a few of these types of gyms and they will also be priced cheaper if they don’t have the CrossFit name and branding.
Since specialty gyms will still cost a pretty penny, they may come close to the amount you would pay for CrossFit, especially if they are independently owned. However, it never hurts to compare prices while looking for the best option. Special gyms can still keep you fit while helping you save money.
Fitbod Fitness App
Sometimes workout apps are an ideal substitute for CrossFit. Fitbod is a very popular fitness app that people use to make circuit-style workouts. It may not be exact CrossFit, but Fitbod exercises can feel very similar to CrossFit WODs if you make sure to pick your weights accurately and work at a safe, appropriate intensity.
Exercises on the Fitbod app can help you build strength where CrossFit fails to do so. With Fitbod, you can put together a unique training program that will target the muscle groups you want to sculpt and strengthen.
While using Fitbod, you can even enter how much time you have available into the clock option so that your workouts are further personalized to your life and free time. Fitbod is even able to customize a workout for you based on how recovered your various muscle groups are from past workouts.
The brand Peloton is famous for its impressive spin bikes and mobile app for tech devices. Their bikes are often more expensive, usually costing thousands of dollars. Thankfully you can always just pay for the more affordable Peloton app to get a Peloton workout in instead of CrossFit.
The Peloton app has a boot camp training program and circuit training workouts that can deliver a high-intensity workout at the touch of a few buttons. If you don’t want to do a ton of heavy barbell lifting or high-skilled gym work, using Peloton Digital could be the perfect fit.
If it is within your budget, it can be worthwhile to buy a whole Peloton spin bike for your house. You can also buy non-Peloton bikes and enroll in Peloton cycling classes through the app. Even though spin bikes cost at least a couple hundred dollars or more, you will often end up saving a lot of money over a repeating CrossFit gym membership.
One of the biggest positives of Peloton bikes is that it is a one-time purchase for your health and fitness journey and the app membership often costs less to pay for than CrossFit programs.
Playing tennis is a lesser-known alternative to CrossFit which is a fun sport played by thousands of people around the world!
As long as you remember to move around the court a lot and keep yourself active, you can achieve a stellar workout from tennis matches.
Usually, people use tennis to get fitter and to lose weight healthily. It is a fantastic way to get more active and move around more.
If you decide on playing tennis instead of working out in CrossFit, remember to keep the small talk to a minimum, take short breaks, and don’t stand in the same spot on the court for a long time. You will also burn even more calories if you play single matches of tennis. Keep up your movements even if the ball has traveled to the other side of the court.
A great way to replace CrossFit exercises is with good old-fashioned running. Running will offer you some variety in your fitness regimen and it can include sprinting, running, jogging, and walking while taking a break.
Pair running with healthy, proper nutrition to ensure that you will lose weight while working out. Use sprinting intervals to build up your muscles. Try sprinting for one minute, jogging for two, and repeat this cycle as many times as possible to use running to stay healthy.
Another stellar alternative to traditional CrossFit is jumping rope. Jumping rope works out the whole body and betters your overall cardiovascular health. Even if you don’t know how to jump rope, you’ll be able to research online and master the hobby in a matter of mere days.
The faster you jump rope, the more calories you will burn. It is also very easy to find affordable jump rope products online that will serve you well for your whole life.
Finally, yoga is another perfect alternative to CrossFit. Yoga will help you to become less stiff while it loosens up your muscles. This hobby carries a low risk of bodily injury since yoga is all about stretching and warming up the body.
There is also more to yoga than stretching. The more intense yoga poses can burn a lot of calories while building your muscles. Your balance will also become better with yoga exercises.
CrossFit may build up your muscles faster than yoga, but if you need a low-impact CrossFit alternative, yoga is a safe and ideal option.
Zumba is the perfect pastime for people who love to dance and want their workout to feel fun. Using a program of choreographed moves can help you burn calories while you stay in shape and have fun alone or with friends. It is ideal for people who want exercises that will improve their heart health while being easy on their joints.
Nearly any gym around offers useful Zumba classes. There are even some gyms that will let you pay for Zumba classes alone instead of a full gym membership if you feel that Zumba will be sufficient for your workout needs. Use Zumba tutorials and videos online to check out the alternative and to figure out if it’s for you!