Coach’s Corner: Perfect Your Wall Ball for the 2018 CrossFit® Open

We’re only weeks away from this year’s CrossFit® Open, and there tends to be one consistent thought on everyone’s mind. What movements will be included in this Open’s string of workouts? Unfortunately, there’s no way of knowing until Dave Castro drops more hints and news, but we can do our best to prepare for popular movements often used in workouts. One movement that makes a consistent appearance in workouts is the wall ball.

[Coach’s Corner is a strength sport focused Q & A that’s brought to our readership with Andre Crews, Head Coach and Owner of 150 Bay CrossFit in Jersey City, NJ.]

The wall ball is a high rep movement that’s often used to test an athlete’s strength endurance. To help us out with our wall ball form, provide us with useful tips, and to talk 2018 CrossFit Open wall ball movement standards, we reached out to Andre Crews at 150 Bay CrossFit in Jersey City, NJ.

Below we’ve elaborated on and included the three tips Crews referenced in the video!

1. Shake Out Your Shoulders

Don’t forget to shake out your shoulders Crews said, “Shake out shoulders between reps. Keeping your arms up the entire set is like holding chair pose in yoga for 30-60 seconds. It adds unnecessary fatigue to your shoulders so do a quick shake after each rep!”

[Want more help for the wall ball? Check out our ultimate wall ball guide!]

2. Use Your Stretch Reflex

Walls balls aren’t heavy squats, don’t treat them like it. Crews states, “Bounce out of the squat! Don’t try to control the squat on the way down like on a heavy squat. Wall balls are just a tiny fraction of what you can squat, so use your natural stretch reflex and bounce out of the hole as you stand to throw the ball!”

3. Know Your Body

Listening to yourself is the ticket to success, “Stick to a sustainable rep scheme. Anyone can do 30-50 wall balls on their first set. But doing a max effort set at the beginning of a workout is likely to burn you out. If you have 3 rounds of 50 reps, think about doing 5 sets of 10 each round with 5-10 seconds of rest in between. This will help manage your heart rate and prevent you from redlining too early in the workout!”

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Jake holds a Master's in Sports Science and a Bachelor's in Exercise Science. Currently, Jake serves as one of the full time writers and editors at BarBend. He's a Certified Strength and Conditioning Specialist (CSCS) and has spoken at state conferences on the topics of writing in the fitness industry and building a brand. As of right now, Jake has published over 1,100 articles related to strength athletes and sports. Articles about powerlifting concepts, advanced strength & conditioning methods, and topics that sit atop a strong science foundation are Jake's bread-and-butter. On top of his personal writing, Jake edits and plans content for 15 writers and strength coaches who come from every strength sport.Prior to BarBend, Jake worked for two years as a strength and conditioning coach for hockey and lacrosse players, and was a writer at the Vitamin Shoppe's corporate office. Jake regularly competes in powerlifting in the 181 lb weight class, and considers himself a weightlifting shoe sneaker head. On the side of writing full time, Jake works as a part-time strength coach and works with clients through his personal business Concrete Athletics in Hoboken and New York City.