Workout of the Day

Bigger Base, Better Skill


There’s a good reason that so many of the ancient pyramids -- some nearly 5,000 years old -- are still standing. The pyramid is a sturdy structure: a strong, wide base and a tapered peak. There’s also a good reason that we use the pyramid as an illustration for how to develop sturdy non-physical structures as well: skills, human health, organizations, etc.

The problem is, the top of the pyramid is the most exciting part. Very few people are interested in spending their time with mass of stone that lies at the base, but the peak -- that’s where you want to be. In training, it’s common to be drawn to the skills that exist at the top: party tricks such as muscle-ups, double-unders, handstand walks. While there’s nothing wrong with approaching progressions of these skills early on, it’s key to understand the importance of building the base first. These basics -- things like flexibility, core strength, joint stability, and basic stamina and endurance -- don’t have the same curb appeal as our peak-of-the-pyramid skills, but they lay the groundwork for effectively and safely developing higher skills. Skill developed straight up, with a base that’s only as wide as its peak, will be easy to topple (assuming it can last long enough to even get there). A skill developed with a wide base will last longer, and carry over to additional skills as well.

Before you go committing all your time to chasing down the elusive this or that movement, consider: have you given due diligence to the basics? How wide is your base?

- PS


  • With a 15 min running clock, for quality:

    • :20 L-support hold

    • :40 handstand hold

    • :60 reverse plank hold


  • Tabata push-ups

  • Rest 1 min

  • Tabata air squats

  • Rest 1 min

  • Tabata burpees