Pistol

CrossFit Games 2012 Regionals Breakdown Event 2

We are back once again to break down Regionals events for the 2012 Reebok CrossFit Games workouts. In this video we focus on the Regionals Event 2 with our tips and cues for the Pistols, and learn how to train appropriately by understanding unilateral loading and resisting rotation.

We've gone over these movement patterns and tips before, so here are some additional resources:

Pistol

  • Place feet hip width apart or glued together
  • Feet are pointing almost straight forward, just slightly out
  • Abs and butt are on
  • Lift one leg up in front of you with straight leg and pointed toe
  • Descend by pushing hips back and down
  • Fight to keep the grounded knee out during descend
  • Descend until hip crease falls below knee level
  • Ascend by pushing hips back and then up
  • Fight to keep the grounded knee out during ascend
  • Don't allow the lifted heel to touch the ground throughout the entire movement

Pistol Progression Pt.1

In this series, Coach Carl breaks down the Pistol movement into a number of progressions to develop the one-legged squat. We've talked about adding the Candlestick Roll and using its momentum as an assistance to the Pistol, but now Carl is on to exploring the strict version of the Pistol and exploring why it is so challenging for some athletes.

In this first video, Carl demonstrates a number of quick tests and drills to diagnose and challenge the athlete with regards to balance, strength, and mobility for the Pistol. Just like any other movement, as soon as we remove a point of contact and decrease the base of support, we instantly increase the difficulty as there are more degrees of freedom and less stability. When this happens, we need to go back to check that our movement mechanics are solid before removing the point of contact, and in this case we have to test to make sure our Squat and Lunge mechanics are solid before we attempt the Pistol.

Pistol Progression Pt.2

In this series, Coach Carl breaks down the Pistol movement into a number of progressions to develop the one-legged squat. We've talked about adding the Candlestick Roll and using its momentum as an assistance to the Pistol, but now Carl is on to exploring the strict version of the Pistol and exploring why it is so challenging for some athletes.

In this segment Carl begins by reviewing proper squatting mechanics and positions for a normal two-legged squat. Carl explains the need to change orientation in order to engaging the posterior chain in order to stand up, and also emphasizes the need to drive the knees out in order to keep the shin vertical to avoid stress and shear on the knees while squatting.  Finally, Carl progresses to the next drill which is to do step-ups onto a box.

Pistol Progression Pt.3

In this series, Coach Carl breaks down the Pistol movement into a number of progressions to develop the one-legged squat. We've talked about adding the Candlestick Roll and using its momentum as an assistance to the Pistol, but now Carl is on to exploring the strict version of the Pistol and exploring why it is so challenging for some athletes.

In this video, Coach Carl continues to continues to use the step-up on the box to discuss the rotational component of the Pistol.  Carl then moves to the side of the box and steps up and down with a hanging leg to a small swing to find balance and full range of motion in the hips for the squatting leg.

Pistol Progression Pt.4

In this series, Coach Carl breaks down the Pistol movement into a number of progressions to develop the one-legged squat. We've talked about adding the Candlestick Roll and using its momentum as an assistance to the Pistol, but now Carl is on to exploring the strict version of the Pistol and exploring why it is so challenging for some athletes.

In this video, Coach Carl incorporates a couple more tools for the Pistol progression to help train the transition.  By using a box to touch at the bottom, similar to box-squatting this provides the athelete with a big and steady base of support as their cue on the bottom.  Additionally, holding a weight plate in front helps activate and engage the posterior chain to allow the athlete to properly sit back into the squat rather than lurch forward.

Pistol with Roll

  • Place feet hip width apart or glued together
  • Feet are pointing almost straight forward, just slightly out
  • Abs and butt are on
  • Lift one leg up in front of you with straight leg and pointed toe
  • Descend by pushing hips back and down
  • Fight to keep the grounded knee out during descend
  • Descend until hip crease falls below knee level
  • Follow with a controlled fall backwards into a candle stick roll
  • Utilize the momentum generated for the roll to drive back off the ground onto the loading leg
  • Ascend by pushing hips back and then up
  • Fight to keep the grounded knee out during ascend
  • Don't allow the lifted heel to touch the ground throughout the entire movement

Rolling Pistol Progression Pt.1

In this series, Coach Carl discusses how to use the Candlestick Roll as an assistance to scale a one-legged squat, also known as the Pistol.  The Pistol is a complex movement as it requires strength, balance, mobility, and coordination.  Adding the Roll to the Pistol enables the athlete to decrease the load through momentum; maintain the balance aspect as the athlete doesn't need to hold onto a band, rack, or partner; improves skill and coordination by incorporating the Roll.

In this first progression, Coach Carl demonstrates how to do a proper Candlestick Roll into a Squat position.  The key is to get your hip into extension as you roll back onto your upperback and shoulders and drive your toes up to the ceiling in front of you. Don't bend at the hip and let your feet go past your lead, or you will lose all that momentum you are trying to create.  On the roll forward back up to your feet, do a quick Sit Up, tuck, and drive your heels to your butt to create a fast rotation onto your feet, and you should end up at the bottom of your Squat.

Rolling Pistol Progression Pt.2

In this series, Coach Carl discusses how to use the Candlestick Roll as an assistance to scale a one-legged squat, also known as the Pistol.  The Pistol is a complex movement as it requires strength, balance, mobility, and coordination.  Adding the Roll to the Pistol enables the athlete to decrease the load through momentum; maintain the balance aspect as the athlete doesn't need to hold onto a band, rack, or partner; improves skill and coordination by incorporating the Roll.

In this video, Coach Carl continues to use the Candlestick Roll to progress the Pistol.  This time, instead of rolling out of the Candlestick with two feet we use only one leg to post on the ground.  The key in the beginning to maximize the utility of the roll is to come up out of it with your nose down and hips up - almost like if you were about to continue into a forward roll.  This will help you engage your posterior and also set up your body position to be over posting foot.  Once you get progress and become more comfortable with balance and loading the posting leg, you can begin to recieve in a more upright position.