The 2016 and 2017 Reebok CrossFit Games champion and Fittest Man On Earth™ Mat Fraser continues to pull out surprises for fans everywhere. There’s no denying that Fraser is one of the most well-rounded strength athletes in the game right now – at least in the sport of CrossFit® – and his latest tumbling video helps build upon his case.
Yesterday, Kill Cliff shared an Instagram video highlighting Fraser throwing a tumbling pass on mats in the gym. This pass wasn’t your run of the mill round-off back handspring, or back tuck. No, it was a round-off full, which is a pretty tough feat in the world of gymnastics, especially for someone who doesn’t regularly practice tumbling passes.
If you’ve ever tried to tumble, or have done flips on a trampoline, then you can probably understand why this is so impressive. A full requires a flip and full twist of the body, while maintaining a somewhat hollow posture, and spotting the world around you to properly stick the landing, which you can see Fraser doing. In gymnastics, this is one of the first elite skills athletes learn after the back handspring and back tuck.
Every once in a while, you encounter athletes who possess a sick natural level of body awareness who can do stunts like this without even truly practicing them. Having spotted tumbling for years, this was a relatively good round-off full for never seeing Fraser perform one before. Usually, it’s the long-time wrestlers who can perform stunts like this, which is another reason why this was so impressive.
Before CrossFit, Fraser was a full-time weightlifter with hopes of making it to the Olympics. Yes, weightlifting requires a high amount of body awareness, but it’s not the same degree of body manipulation as wrestling. To read more about Fraser’s past weightlifting aspirations, check out the linked article above and the video below.
You don’t have to be a CrossFit fan to recognize an insane feat of athleticism. As a retired tumbling coach who’s spotted many fulls in his lifetime, Fraser’s full earns my nod of approval, and is honestly better than some of the gymnasts/cheerleaders I used to work with.
With this full, maybe Fraser should start practicing gymnastics and set his sights on the 2020 Tokyo Olympics (only slightly joking).
Feature image screenshot from @killcliff Instagram page.