1100 Globe Ave Mountainside, NJ 07092

908-418-1829

News / Events

The CrossFit KOA Holiday party will take place Saturday, December 1st.

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Save The Date

The CrossFit KOA Holiday party will take place Saturday, December 1st.

We will continue with an abbreviated schedule on Thursday. We will have the 7am,9:30 1:30, 4:15 and 5:15 classes.

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Nov 1st schedule

We will continue with an abbreviated schedule on Thursday. We will have the 7am,9:30 1:30, 4:15 and 5:15 classes.

I just wanted to let you all know I am sending out my most positive thoughts to everyone as this storm approaches.  If CrossFit has taught us anything about life, it is that we can get through anything.  You have to believe that.  How do I know that?  Well, just look at this past week of programming.  5 days of Hero WODs, one more difficult than the next.  And yet day after day I saw all of you come in and attack these workouts with reckless abandon.  Some of you were sore, beat up from several consecutive days of training, tired from early mornings and/or late nights… and yet stil

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Get Tough

I just wanted to let you all know I am sending out my most positive thoughts to everyone as this storm approaches.  If CrossFit has taught us anything about life, it is that we can get through anything.  You have to believe that.  How do I know that?  Well, just look at this past week of programming.  5 days of Hero WODs, one more difficult than the next.  And yet day after day I saw all of you come in and attack these workouts with reckless abandon.  Some of you were sore, beat up from several consecutive days of training, tired from early mornings and/or late nights… and yet still you came and you finished.  You always finished. 
Do not downplay what you all accomplish in the gym every day.  Do not let anyone tell you that you are overstating the importance of what you do during your time in the gym.  Walking up to a bar that has weight on it you have never before picked up, and trying to pick it up and lift it over your head takes the kind of courage and guts that most regular people cant possibly imagine.  Jumping up to bang out a few more pull ups when your forearms are throbbing and your hands are ripped or are on the verge of ripping is a demonstration of toughness that absolutely blows my mind. 
And I see these things EVERY SINGLE DAY in our gym.  I see it from each and every one of you. 
Please take that strength and that toughness and apply it to everything you do in life.  Do not run away from problems, and do not be afraid of not being able to handle things.  Remember that you have faced the impossible before and you conquered it.  Couldn’t do double unders when you started but now you can get 10 in a row.  Never imagined climbing the rope but now you can get up and down in between sets of sit ups and power cleans without a thought.  Thought you would never lift more than the bar but now you are putting triple digit weights on your back and squatting it for multiple reps. 
CrossFit isn’t hard just for the sake of being hard.  Workouts are designed to have a specific effect on your physical body, to make you more fit through constantly varied, functional movements performed at high intensity.  But it is also made challenging to strengthen your resolve, your character, and your intestinal fortitude. 
There is a great saying that I have heard numerous times and I have always referred back to it during some difficult times. It goes: “Tough times don’t last, but tough people do.”  As your coach, that is my number one priority for each and everyone one of you: to make you tough.  Being tough has nothing to do with how much you lift or how fast you finish a particular WOD.  Being tough is coming in to do a workout that you know will leave you on your back gasping for air.  Being tough is coming in to do a workout that has 3 movements… and you hate each and everyone one of them, but you come anyway.  Being tough is adding 5 lbs on the bar to try and PR a lift, even after failing at a previous attempt.  Being tough is raising a family, being a good husband or wife, working a full time job, and still finding time to take care of your body and come in and train.  That is toughness. 
So during the next few days, if things get a little crazy around town remember: you are one tough you-know-what.  Meet whatever challenges come your way head on and stay positive knowing that you will be able to handle it just fine. 
After all… what can be worse than overhead squats or burpees?

We will be closed on Monday, October 28th.

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We will be closed on Monday, October 28th.

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Many of you have inquired about the reasoning behind our choice of programming for the gym.  In the two years we have been running, we have tried a number of different cycles, incorporating more traditional CrossFit metabolic conditioning workouts at times, at other times focusing on strength with traditional periodization routines.  As the strength and conditioning world – CrossFit included – continued to evolve, we always tried to provide the best programming for our members.

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Programming

Many of you have inquired about the reasoning behind our choice of programming for the gym.  In the two years we have been running, we have tried a number of different cycles, incorporating more traditional CrossFit metabolic conditioning workouts at times, at other times focusing on strength with traditional periodization routines.  As the strength and conditioning world – CrossFit included – continued to evolve, we always tried to provide the best programming for our members.  We have attended numerous seminars and certifications as well as trained with other top athletes and coaches to help refine our programming skills and to be certain we provide our members with the best possible training.  We have maintained certain criteria that we believe are necessary in choosing a direction for the gym as far as how we program our workouts.  Here are a few of them:

  • We will always stay true to what CrossFit was originally designed to be.  Constantly varied, functional movement performed at high intensity is what CrossFit is traditionally defined as.  Our WODs will reflect this no matter what direction we go.
  • Strength will be an integral part of our routine.  It is arguably the single most important aspect to your health, no matter who you are.  While running around and perspiring an obscene volume of sweat seems like the greatest thing in the world, it cannot ever replace the importance of a sound strength program.  Get strong first, then start running around like a mad man/woman and I guarantee you will see better results (and fewer injuries!).
  • If Michael Phelps, Lebron James, your grandma, and Joe Piizzi walk in the door, our programming must be capable of providing ALL 4 people with the same benefit towards their health and fitness.  This is where our method of scaling weight, reps, and range of motion becomes so important.  Regardless of your experience and ability, we believe our workouts are suited for EVERY SINGLE PERSON.  At times there is a lot of skill work that, as a result, force some of you to spend more time practicing than actually moving heavy weight.  But even then time spent practicing is having a huge benefit on your muscles, your brain activity, your coordination, your agility, flexibility, and core strength.  Never think that you are “wasting time” because you aren’t able to “do more weight.”  Therefore, like I said, our workouts are designed to benefit ANYONE and EVERYONE. 
  • Fun.  It has to be fun.  And while running 1 mile than ripping off 40 chest to bar pull ups or 3 rounds of a 500 meter row and then 75 double unders might not seem fun to some, we all know that it is EXTREMELY fun.  The challenge, the anxiety of how much the workout will “hurt”, the thrill when you are just a few reps away from finishing, and then the ultimate satisfaction when you are done… oh hell yes the WODs are fun. 

   Josh and I have programmed for the gym for some time but have recently used the programming from Outlaw CrossFit in Alexandria, Virginia.  Created by Rudy Nielsen, Outlaw CrossFit was one of the first CrossFit gyms established… ever.  His longevity speaks volumes to his success and his experience with various programs and methods has helped him fine tune his programming skills to become what many believe is the best in the business. 
   What Josh and I loved about the programming was the inclusion of assistance exercises to help train and practice the Olympic lifts (snatch and clean & jerk).  We value these movements a great deal and we believe this programming to be the most effective way to help our members progress in both skill and strength in these movements. 
   The success of Outlaw CrossFit members has been jaw dropping, as countless people with 9-5 jobs and regular careers were putting up staggering numbers in the gym.  The years of tinkering and data acquisition has allowed Rudy Nielsen to put together a very solid strength and conditioning program that can turn just about anyone into an absolute beast.  It takes the bar and sets it so much higher than we ever thought.  And you know I LOVE THAT.  Now the “average Joe” doesn’t have to be so average any more. 
   And that is exactly what we want for all of you here at CrossFit Koa.  We do not want mediocrity.  We do not want you on elliptical machines mindlessly passing the minutes away.  We want to erase any doubt in your mind – come into our gym, do what we tell you, work your butt off, clean up your nutrition, and watch your life change before your eyes.
   We will continue with this programming for a while as we are very satisfied with how it has benefitted our members overall goals towards health and fitness at all levels.  In time, there will be new trainers who emerge with slightly different programming that many will swear is the “next best thing”.  Josh and I will research it, test it, and if we love it, we will bring it to the gym.  But rest assured there will always be barbells in your hands.  There will always be a pull up bar waiting for you above your head.  And there will always be a sidewalk waiting for you to run on it. 
   As the saying goes, the more things change, the more they stay the same….

Barbells for Boobs will be taking place this Saturday at 10am. The first heat will start promptly at 10am so please feel free to come in starting at 9:30am to warm up. Open Gym will be open in the back gym while the event is going on. This event supports Mammograms in Action and you can donate via the link below. 

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Barbells for Boobs

Barbells for Boobs will be taking place this Saturday at 10am. The first heat will start promptly at 10am so please feel free to come in starting at 9:30am to warm up. Open Gym will be open in the back gym while the event is going on. This event supports Mammograms in Action and you can donate via the link below. 

This is a team workout where teams of two will take on "Helen meets Grace:his is a TWO-PERSON team workout with one person working at a time, except for the 400m runs, which must be performed together.
“HELEN” “GRACE”
3 ROUNDS
30 CLEAN&JERKS (135/95)
400M RUN
21 KBS (53/35)
12 PULL UPS
Once all three rounds of HELEN are complete, the team immediately moves on to perform GRACE Score is total time for the team to complete both workouts!

 

Click here to donate

 

The squat.  An exercise I avoided throughout my entire college years and most of my adult life as well.  When asked by others why I never squatted I told them, “Last time I checked girls weren’t approaching men and complimenting them on their quadriceps…” For every one squat I may have done, I did at least 1,945 bicep curls.

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If you dont know SQUAT... you better ask someone... or read this!

The squat.  An exercise I avoided throughout my entire college years and most of my adult life as well.  When asked by others why I never squatted I told them, “Last time I checked girls weren’t approaching men and complimenting them on their quadriceps…” For every one squat I may have done, I did at least 1,945 bicep curls.
   Oh sure I would load up weight on the leg press and crank out some reps.  Head over to the kick out machine and try to isolate each muscle group in my quad complex.  Do some leg curls because those hamstring muscles seemed kind of important… or so I heard. 
   For years I trained like this.  Following magazines advice, and of course using the BIBLE – Arnold Schwarzenegger’s Encyclopedia of Modern Bodybuilding – as a guide to help me reach my goals. 
   And you want to know the irony?  I never really got as “big” as I wanted.  I never got faster.  I never got stronger.  I began to hate the gym and resent “wasting” my time in there and not seeing results. 
   Then I found CrossFit. 
   Then CrossFit told me, “Dude.  You have to frikkin squat bro.”
   Life = changed. 
   Since incorporating REAL squats into my regular exercise routine, my entire fitness has changed.  Not only did I see changes in my strength and speed, but I was finally starting to see the changes in my entire body that I always wanted but could never get through millions of curls and a few hack squats once a month. 
   The squat is paramount to your health and your training, regardless of whom you are and what level you are at in terms of strength, skill and ability.  Whether you are working to perfect an air squat or struggling to get that 400 pounds up, focusing on your squat will create a solid foundation for building a truly healthy mind AND body. 
   At CrossFit Koa, we squat.  We squat A LOT.  Back squats, front squats, cleans, snatches, wall balls, thrusters, squat jumps… yes, you will learn to love squatting in our gym.  For those of you who may not believe me and just how important the squat is, here are a few points to consider:

  • The squat incorporates the muscles of the posterior (back side) chain that are necessary for hip extension.  The hamstrings, glutes and adductors are all key components in all movement involving the lower body.  That means picking up your kids, lifting boxes when moving into a new home, shoveling the driveway after a snowstorm, walking up steps… you get the point.  Therefore it is vitally important we keep these muscles healthy and strong.  No exercise does that better than a squat.*
  • By nature, we humans are anterior (front side) dominant.  We stand in front of a mirror and we see pecs, abs, biceps, front delts… and as a result we cannot help but focus on that musculature.  We sit at a desk and type.  We drive a car.  We eat dinner at the table.   We are rarely thinking about contracting our glutes or pulling our shoulders back for better posture, and as a result our health suffers.  The squat more effectively than any other exercise trains the muscles of the posterior chain and will help counter this “anterior” world we live in by strengthening those vital muscles we cannot see in a mirror. *
  • When putting a barbell on your back, or in the front rack, and performing a squat, you also benefit from the neuromuscular response created in your body.   The human body does not operate in isolation.  The nervous system sends messages to your muscles and tells them what to do.  This relationship is extremely important and should not be circumvented with isolation exercises or machines.  Balancing a bar on your back, squatting to full depth, and standing tall to full hip extension is an optimal way to illicit the best neuromuscular response within your     body. *
  • Butts.  We all want nice butts.  Squats help you get a nice butt. 

 
   I could very easily go on and on about the wonders of the squat but I do not want to bore you.  And besides that last point I made above is pretty much the end all to any argument against squatting. 
   So learn to love the squat and everything it can do for you.  Perfect the movement so that you can increase the resistance (i.e. add weight) and see satisfying gains in strength and in your physical appearance as well.   And when someone compliments your posterior chain one day, you can send me a message thanking me. 
  P.S. Don’t worry Joe Piizzi… we will still do bicep curls at some point. 
 
*Ideas from “Starting Strength: Basic Barbell Training 3rd Edition” by Mark Rippetoe

Just around this time two years ago we opened up our doors at CrossFit KOA. Our "official" opening day included the WOD "Grace" in support of Barbells For Boobs. This great ...

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Barbells for Boobs

Just around this time two years ago we opened up our doors at CrossFit KOA. Our "official" opening day included the WOD "Grace" in support of Barbells For Boobs. This great ...

event raises money for Mammograms in Action. We will once again be hosting a Barbells For Boobs event on Saturday October, 20th. We have made a donation on behalf of the gym so there is no need to register to participate. However if you want to raise more funds for this great cause the link is below. The WOD will be a 2 member team taking on "Helen meets Grace". More details (times, etc.) to follow.
 

So the Giants won today…
   … and I dropped my phone again. 
   Guess that just became an unfortunate “superstition” for me and my beloved Samsung. 
   ANYWAYS, I want to continue a discussion I had with some classes during this week about the quality of movement and what it means to do a workout “prescribed” or “Rx”.
   First of all, if you have time, I encourage you to read the following article on “Virtuosity” in CrossFit as explained by the founder of CrossFit Coach Glassman:

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Back to Basics

So the Giants won today…
   … and I dropped my phone again. 
   Guess that just became an unfortunate “superstition” for me and my beloved Samsung. 
   ANYWAYS, I want to continue a discussion I had with some classes during this week about the quality of movement and what it means to do a workout “prescribed” or “Rx”.
   First of all, if you have time, I encourage you to read the following article on “Virtuosity” in CrossFit as explained by the founder of CrossFit Coach Glassman:
http://journal.crossfit.com/2005/08/virtuosity-1.tpl
   With that in mind, I would also like to share a quote with you all that was on Facebook from another coach to his/her members:
“So proud of {our members} for finishing close to last in the last WOD today because they TOOK PRIDE IN THEIR MOVEMENT and didn't worm, rock, or not come to full extension in their pushups today! Truth is, REAL pushups take longer and are harder than sh*tty ones!! Love you guys and way to hold a standard!!!!!! WOOT!!!!!!!!”
   Point: Good coaches notice sh*tty movement. 
  I understand that CrossFit is, at the end of the day, exercise.  And while exercise may not seem to be the most important part of your day, it may very well be the most important thing to your health.  As I have stated before, there is not one drug or medication on the planet that can do for your body what a regular exercise program can.  So while we are only “exercising”, let us not diminish the importance of what you all accomplish within our gym walls.
   I cannot speak for every trainer or every CF gym in the world, but at CrossFit Koa we want the absolute best for each and every one of our members.  And I am afraid that somewhere along the way that message has gotten lost.   Somehow pull ups that do not end with each rep going from full extension at the bottom to chin over the bar, push ups where the chest does not hit the floor or the arms to full extension at the top, squats that do not travel past parallel at the bottom… somehow all of these things have become considered performing these movement “as prescribed”. 
  Full range of motion is not just for show.  It is to make your body stronger.  To create better posture.  To stave off decrepitude when we grow old.  To promote functionality.  It is vital to the CrossFit plan and to your health and somehow it has become not as important to some of you as writing “Rx” to your name has. 
   It is time for a fundamental change in our gym, myself included.  I challenge you all to care just as much at perfecting your air squat as you do about adding 1 more pound on your clean.  I challenge you to do 10 dead hang pull ups unbroken before doing 10 kipping ones.  I challenge you to fix your running mechanics before signing up for that next race (CF Endurance plug!) Take one, maybe two steps back so you can take about 549,912 forward!!!!
   No matter who you are, no matter what age, no matter what experience, you need to make this priority #1.  Regardless if you are someone who wants to just stay in shape to help with some troubling back pain, or someone who wants to lose 5 pounds before a beach vacation, or someone who thinks you can win the Games, quality in your movements and that struggle for obtaining virtuosity in your movements need to be your #1 goal… not a false “Rx”.
   I plan on holding you ALL to not a “higher” standard, but the only standard.  There will be tough love coming your way.  I have told every person I have ever coached in Foundations or spoke to concerning joining CrossFit Koa the same exact thing: leave your ego at the door and be prepared for a big slice of humble pie.
 Like I said, we want what is best for ALL of you.  I will be here to push you when you need it, and reel you back in when you need that too.  Let’s get back to crushing the fundamentals and the rest I can assure you will come.

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