The 9 Foundational Movements

One this page you will find videos and info on the 9 Foundational Movements that form the base of many CrossFit excercises.

Firstly, What is CrossFit?

CrossFit is constantly varied functional movements performed at high intensity. All CrossFit workouts are based on functional movements, and these movements reflect the best aspects of gymnastics, weightlifting, running, rowing and more. These are the core movements of life. They move the largest loads the longest distances, so they are ideal for maximizing the amount of work done in the shortest time. Intensity is essential for results and is measurable as work divided by time—or power. The more work you do in less time, or the higher the power output, the more intense the effort. By employing a constantly varied approach to training, functional movements and intensity lead to dramatic gains in fitness.

So what are these foundational movements?

You can think of these as the building blocks for many of the movements that are used in both our training here at Dauntless but more importantly life in general. While there are 9 movements in total they can be broken into three seperate categories, with three levels of progression in each one.


  1. The Air Squat

  2. The Front Squat

  3. The Overhead Squat


  1. The Shoulder (Strict) Press

  2. The Push Press

  3. The Push Jerk


  1. The Deadlift

  2. The Sumo Deadlift High-Pull

  3. The Medicine-Ball Clean

Some of these movements may seem strange, but learning and aiming to perfect the technique of each one will provide a great starting point for a lifetime of functional fitness. You can use them to break down some of the other movements in Crossfit. Thurster? Well that’s just a front squat with a push press. Want to improve your clean? Focus on building strength using the deadlift and your front squat. Flipping Tires? Merely fancy deadlifts!


Demonstration of the correct Air Squat technique.

Demonstration of the correct Front Squat technique.

Demonstration of the correct Overhead Squat technique.


Demonstration of the correct Shoulder Press technique.

Demonstration of the correct Push Press technique.

Demonstration of the correct Push Jerk technique.


Demonstration of the correct Deadlift technique.

Demonstration of the correct Sumo Deadlift High Pull technique.

Demonstration of the correct Medicine-Ball Clean technique.