Internet Warriors

Games competitor Chris D tackles WOD 4.

The noon crew. Great work guys.

Konstantin Konstantinovs is a heavyweight Latvian powerlifter and former raw deadlift World Record holder. In a sport dominated by truly large and usually overweight men, Konstantinovs is a lean, very fit, and highly athletic 270 pounds. Below are a couple videos of him training. The first is of him doing 55 consecutive pullups. He does them with a tight kip that he learned as a boy gymnast, and he does the first 40 or so without even slowing down. That’s 55 pullups by a guy who weighs 270 pounds, mind you. The second vid is Konstantinovs deadlifting 939 pounds raw. Raw means no belt or deadlifting suit.  That is why he pulls down his singlet after the lift, to show that it is not a deadlifting suit, but just a regular weightlifting singlet.

Besides the actual videos, what amazes me are the comments. People are actually criticizing Konstantinovs for doing kipping and not deadhang pullups. On the deadlift video, people are armchair correcting his form. The guy is deadlifting nearly a thousand pounds, but I guess his technique is not good enough!

The same thing happens in a video of Pat Mendes, the American superheavy Oly lifter out of Average Broz Gym in Vegas squatting about 700 (he now does 800). He goes all the way down and rebounds up fast.  There are comments about how stupid he is not to use a spotter. How do you spot a squat like that? You simply can’t and that is why bumpers are used.

It all just amazes me. Somehow the anonymity of a computer screen gives people the right to be disrespectful and rude.  And CrossFit seems to bear the brunt. If people criticize Mendes and Konstantinovs, what do you think is said on the internet about the average CrossFitter. Sure, there are a lot of videos out there of CrossFitters lifting with less than perfect form or less than huge weights (there are a lot of CrossFitters lifting quite heavy weights with very good form too). There are a lot of videos out there of people running with less than perfect running form and certainly not running at world class speeds and no one criticizes them for it. And so what anyway. At least they are lifting weights. The way people harp on the internet, you’d think that it is better to be a great couch sitting potato chip eating TV watcher than an average strength weightlifter.

Yeah, at least they are lifting weights. Whether you find it your cup of tea or not, whether you think it is the sport of the future or “just exercising”, at least they are in the gym lifting weights, doing pullups, sprinting hard, and getting fit. And what could possibly be wrong with that?

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