As the 2023 CrossFit Games draws nearer, spectators are certain to see some interesting movements and equipment on the competition field that you won’t find in your standard CrossFit Box. One of the most notorious movements, the CrossFit Pig flip, has been announced for event number two of the weekend. The “Pig” is a massive rectangle shaped objected weighing in between 350 - 400 lbs for women and 500 - 560 lbs for men. The objective is to flip the Pig rig end over end a set number of times. The movement is simple by nature but as we’ve learned from past events, is anything but easy.
THIS ARTICLE WAS WRITTEN BY THE DIRECTOR OF COMPETITIVE PROGRAMMING AT TRAINTSK AND THE SWOLE KITCHEN, DONNIE OCHAMPAUGH.
What Is The CrossFit Pig Flip
The most obvious challenge that the CrossFit Pig flip presents is the size of the Pig. Sitting at seven feet long, the distance that the athletes must raise the object off the ground before it can actually be flipped is substantial. With a weight anywhere between 350 - 560lbs, getting this object off the ground to begin the movement is where most of the energy will be expended. For the everyday athlete, imagine putting your refrigerator in the yard and flipping it around. Another challenge that the Pig flip presents is that, as an athlete, it’s very difficult to get your hands on this particular piece of equipment so athletes will have to get creative to prepare for it.
How To Do The CrossFit Pig Flip
If you cross paths with this object and someone asks you to flip it over, your first instinct would likely be to squat down and lift it straight up. While this technique could work, it would only take a couple repetitions before your muscles burn and you’re totally gassed out. Efficiency is key. Performing the CrossFit Pig flip is not only a movement of brute strength, but also a movement of athleticism, explosiveness, and sound mechanics.
Performing the CrossFit Pig flip is a game of leverage and mechanical advantage. Rather than squatting and lifting straight up, start with your torso leaning over the object, hips back, and knees bent. This is a similar set-up to pushing a heavy sled. Once you’re in that position, drive forward and upward at the same time and the Pig will begin to move off the ground a bit easier than just lifting straight up. Once it reaches a certain height off the ground, the flip will have to be initiated.
This is where athleticism and explosiveness come into play.
Just like most movements in CrossFit, your power to move the weight will be initiated with an explosive and violent hip extension. This hip extension will lift the Pig a little higher and give you the opportunity to switch your had position from an under-hand lift to a horizontal pressing position, but you better be fast because you’ll have a fraction of a second before gravity pulls this monster object back to the Earth. You may also have to throw a knee in there to help hold it up. Once you get into this pushing position it’s smooth sailing and you can walk the object over while continuing to press forward with the arms.
2023 CrossFit Games Workout: The Pig Chipper
Individual workout number 2 is going to be what is called the "Pig Chipper". In this workout test, athletes will need to successfully perform not just pig flips, but chest-to-bar pull-ups, toes-to-bar, and wall ball shots.
- 10 pig flips
- 25 chest-to-bar pull-ups
- 50 toes-to-bar
- 100 wall ball shots
- 50 toes-to-bar
- 25 chest-to-bar pull-ups
- 10 pig flips
Time cap: 18 minutes.
What If You Don't Have A Pig Flip Rig
Unless you’re an athlete competing at the CrossFit games, you’re good homies with someone high up at Rogue Fitness, or you’re resourceful and handy like Swolverine athlete Colten Mertens and construct your own from raw materials on the farm, you’ll likely never encounter an object exactly like the Pig. However, there are ways that every athlete, no matter where you are, can re-create the challenge and fun that the CrossFit Pig flip provides. The main movement that best replicates a Pig flip is the tractor tire flip. Tire flips have been a staple in CrossFit gyms since day one. Not only is this movement functional and a great way to build explosive power, it looks pretty badass flipping a huge tractor tire around.
CrossFit Pig Flip Alternative Skill
The CrossFit Pig flip is a combination of absolute strength and explosive power. Regularly performing the three main strength lifts, back squat, bench press, and deadlift will allow you to develop the required strength to get the Pig off the ground and press it over. Olympic barbell movements like snatches and cleans will help develop explosiveness and athleticism to generate power from the hips which is a critical aspect of this movement. Heavy odd object movements would also be a great way to prepare for an encounter with the Pig. Heavy sled pushes or sandbag cleans are a great way to apply your strength in unique and unconventional ways to move heavy objects.
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CrossFit Pig Flip: Takeaway
When athletes show up to the CrossFit Games, they know they will be tested in ways that they could never imagine and in ways that are extremely difficult, borderline impossible to prepare for. Few pieces of equipment epitomize this like the Pig and the movement of the soul crushing CrossFit Pig flip. These athletes applying their endless hours of training to the unknowable challenges that await at the Games is a spectacle that you don’t want to miss. Tune in from August 1st through August 6th to catch Swolverine athletes Colten Mertens, Abbie Domit, and Alex Gazan as they take on the daunting weekend fueled by the industry’s best performance supplements.
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