TRX vs CrossFit: Which is Right for You?

If you are looking for a way to get in better shape, then you may be thinking about performing CrossFit or TRX. Both of these functional exercise routines have become popular among people for different reasons. They can complement each other in certain situations, and you can perform them separately.

Which one is right for you? In general, TRX focuses on body weight resistance training, core strength, and mobility. On the other hand, CrossFit focuses on building a community of people who work out together. Many of the exercises performed in CrossFit require equipment.

Both can be exceptional workout routines in certain situations. What do you need to know about each option? Take a look at both of these below!

What Is CrossFit?

Man doing crossfit

CrossFit is a strength and conditioning workout regimen that focuses on high-intensity, interval training. During a CrossFit routine, participants performed multiple exercises at high intensity for a relatively short amount of time.

CrossFit is a functional exercise routine. This means that many of the exercises that participants perform in CrossFit are designed to mimic activities that they perform every day. Examples include pushing, pulling, and squatting.

For this reason, many of the exercises include weight lifting, push-ups, and squats. Participants performed these exercises for specific amounts of time with a certain amount of weight to build muscle strength.

CrossFit workouts are effective because they emphasize distance, load, and speed. This allows participants to develop an exceptional amount of power using equipment such as rings, ropes, medicine balls, rowing machines, and kettlebells. Typically, there is a standard workout of the day (WOD).

Members work together to complete the given workout that day. Because most people who perform CrossFit routines exercise with other people, the workout regimen focuses on building a sense of community as well.

Even though there are situations where participants will compete against each other, the scoreboard is more about motivating people to do their best.

CrossFit exercises can be customized (aka scaled) to meet the needs of the participants, which has made it incredibly popular. Even though CrossFit is a proven exercise regimen, it is also a lifestyle that participants try to lead.

What Is TRX?

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TRX stands for ‘total body resistance’. It focuses on suspension training to offer participants a full-body workout. The workout routine uses relatively straightforward equipment to provide an effective workout routine.

There is a specific TRX suspension trainer that people need. Then, the only other thing people require is total body weight.

There are multiple signature products available. Individuals can customize the TRX system to meet their needs. TRX takes advantage of suspension training, challenging the body and conditions that create instability.

Therefore, individuals are forced to engage their core to perform every exercise. As people use their core muscles to stabilize themselves, they improve their core strength and balance.

During the workout routines, individuals are suspended from a specific anchor point. Then, when people use their body weight to push against gravity, creating resistance that builds muscle strength.

Individuals can adjust the level of difficulty on the TRX machine for every exercise. All they have to do is move the position of their hands and feet to create a totally different workout.

There are seven separate movements that are encouraged on the TRX trainer. These include squats, lunges, hinges, rotations, planks, poles, and pushes.

Every exercise works a slightly different set of muscles, but all of them force the user to engage his or her core to generate a strong workout.

Suspension training also uses movements and body weight exercises that focus on neuromuscular responses that take place when people change their body position.

For example, using a pulling movement engages several muscle groups, but they are not the same as when people engage in a pushing motion.

Suspension workouts challenge a wide variety of muscle groups during each individual session. Therefore, it can provide people with exceptional results.

How Are They Different?

There are a few ways in which these workout routines are different. Even though they both focus on functional fitness, they have some significant differences.

CrossFit

CrossFit is an exercise program that focuses on high-intensity interval training (HIIT). This could include ropes, weight lifting, squats, and numerous other exercises. CrossFit can also be a competitive program where individuals compete against each other.

CrossFit uses a lot of equipment to encourage people to be their best. Some of the biggest examples of equipment that CrossFit uses include jump ropes, kettlebells, resistance bands, and rowing machines. Even though this equipment is important, the biggest focus of CrossFit is the community it generates.

Every member is invited to complete the workout of the day, which is offered every day. Then, members often hop online to talk about their workouts in different forums.

Many CrossFit centers use the workout of the day to develop a specific fitness routine for their different members. CrossFit has grown into an international community that holds each other accountable and motivates people to do their best.

TRX

It is true that TRX includes some elements of CrossFit. For example, many people who complete CrossFit workouts have probably used resistance bands before. These bands play important roles in TRX; however, TRX does not require nearly as much equipment as CrossFit.

The TRX system provides customers with everything they need to create an effective home gym. It requires only a few straps and handles that can hang from the wall or the door. Therefore, people are able to get an exceptional workout using this system at home.

In contrast to CrossFit, which encourages a sense of community, the TRX system is designed to be used alone.

It doesn’t require as much equipment, and it focuses on core strength, balance, and flexibility.

This is different from CrossFit, which focuses on power, high-intensity training, and interval training.

Both systems can provide an effective workout, but they are not the same.

How Are They Similar?

Woman exercising

While CrossFit and TRX do have a lot of differences, there are some ways in which they are similar.

For example, both workout routines make use of resistance bands, which are important in bodyweight exercises. In addition, both workout routines focus on something called functional fitness.

Even though the alliteration can certainly stick in the memory, the true definition of functional fitness is working certain areas of the body to make it easier for you to handle everyday tasks.

Instead of putting you through a variety of workouts that build muscles you don’t use a lot, both TRX and CrossFit encourage you to strengthen muscles that you use in your everyday life. That way, it is easier for you to walk up and down the stairs, do yard work, and be active in the kitchen.

In essence, CrossFit and TRX can complement each other.

For example, you might be able to take some of the exercises you do during a TRX routine and incorporate them into your CrossFit routine.

That way, you can amplify your desired results while also building mobility, flexibility, and range of motion.

What Makes CrossFit Better?

Man lifting dumbbell

There are several reasons why CrossFit might be better than TRX. Some of the biggest reasons why people like CrossFit include:

  • You get to build a strong sense of community because you will surround yourself with people who have goals that are similar to your own.
  • You can build a tremendous amount of strength and power because you take advantage of a variety of equipment including weights, rolling machines, and kettlebells.
  • You can overcome a lot of mental hurdles that are associated with trying challenging exercises for the first time.
  • Because there are so many pieces of equipment and exercises available to you, you can customize the workout routine to meet your needs.

These are just a few of the many reasons why you might choose CrossFit as your exercise routine.

What Makes TRX Better?

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There are also several situations where you might want to try TRX as well. Some of the biggest reasons why TRX might be better include:

  • You can perform this exercise routine in your own home. You do not necessarily need to travel to a gym to take advantage of this exercise routine.
  • You can also use a TRX system on your own. This is a workout routine that does not require other people for help.
  • The TRX system is incredibly easy to use. There are several simple motions you can learn quickly to get the most out of your workout.
  • That TRX system can dramatically improve your core strength. It also focuses on helping you improve your balance and stability.

There are lots of reasons why TRX might be better.

Who Should Try CrossFit And Why?

Man and woman exercising

People of all levels can try CrossFit. Even if you have not exercised in a long time, you can still go straight from the couch to the CrossFit gym. Professionals will work with you to figure out what is best for you. Some of the reasons why you might want to try CrossFit include:

  • You are looking to build a community of people who can push you and encourage you to be better in the gym.
  • You would like to increase the strength of muscle groups that you use on an everyday basis.
  • You would like to learn how to use new pieces of equipment that can help you get in better shape.
  • You want to overcome mental obstacles and push yourself to be the very best you can be.
  • You are looking for a lifestyle you can lead that can help you become a healthier person.

If any of the reasons above sound like you, then you might want to try CrossFit.

Who Should Try TRX And Why?

You might also be interested in trying the TRX system. Some of the biggest reasons why you might want to try TRX include:

  • You would like to increase the strength of your core muscles.
  • You are looking for an exercise routine you can perform on your own.
  • You are looking for an easy piece of equipment that doesn’t take up a lot of space in your home.
  • You would like to save time on your workouts by avoiding the hassle of traveling to the gym.
  • You want to reduce your chances of getting hurt while exercising.

If any of these reasons describe what you are looking for in your workout routine, then you might want to give TRX a try.

Find The Right Workout Routine To Meet Your Needs

Both CrossFit and TRX can provide you with an effective workout. TRX can be performed on your own, in your home, with a simple piece of equipment.

CrossFit is designed to be performed in the gym with a bunch of other people and numerous types of workout equipment. CrossFit and TRX can also complement each other, so you can do both of them.

Tim Rollins, Editor

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