Today I’m talking to Alec Zirkenbach, Executive Director of Adaptive Training Academy. Alec is a military veteran, trainer, athlete, and entrepreneur who has played a key role in growing the adaptive athletic community in and around CrossFit. Through his work at Adaptive Training Academy, he’s also helped develop numerous training courses and modules to help coaches improve their understanding of and ability to train both able bodied and disabled athletes. This conversation with Alec is a great look into how far the community has come, along with what work can still be done to improve access in fitness.
Before we get into that, I want to give a quick shoutout to today’s episode sponsor, AIRWAAV. The AIRWAAV™ Performance Mouthpiece represents 15 years of research and development conducted with elite athletes perfect the most efficient way of opening the airway and optimizing performance. The AIRWAAV mouthpiece may improve the width of your airway by up to 9%, which may reduce respiratory rate and increase endurance.
On this episode of The BarBend Podcast, host David Thomas Tao talks to Alec Zirkenbach about:
- Alec’s athletic background and trailblazing role in adaptive fitness (02:50)
- Running functional fitness classes for active duty military (07:30)
- The evolution of CrossFit’s specialty courses (12:50)
- Adaptive Training Academy’s potential partnerships with sports beyond CrossFit (16:00)
- Over 1,000 adaptive athletes registered for the 2021 CrossFit Open (20:20)
- Some of the many things coaches might not realize about training for adaptive athletes (23:00)
Relevant links and further reading: