Sledgehammer soldier takes CrossFit mobile

By Sgt. Erik Anderson

sledgehammerFORT BENNING, Ga.- Many soldiers of the 3rd Armored Brigade Combat Team, 3rd Infantry Division, are integrating CrossFit-style training with traditional exercises to increase physical prowess and battle readiness, now one soldier has combined his knowledge of CrossFit and his degree in electrical engineering to design a mobile application targeted to CrossFit enthusiasts.

First Lt. Derek Wales, 25, developed the app during his recent nine-month deployment to Kuwait, where he served as the lead exercise coach for the 70-plus users of the CrossFit gym there.

“We realized there was a formula to the workout we needed,” Wales said. “A cellphone could do it pretty quickly as opposed to me writing the workouts.”

For Wales, a 2010 graduate of the U.S. Military Academy at West Point, N.Y., it’s all about bringing CrossFit to anyone willing to put in the hours.

If a person does not know how to perform a squat exercise, there are videos available to guide them through a workout, he explained.

“A lot of people who are just getting into it don’t know what you need to do or what they need to work on,” said Wales. “A computer can make it pretty easy for them.”

Wales enjoys reading emails from users excited about the features of the app, and plans to continue improving the app to make it better.

“I want it to be a little more relevant,” said Wales. “I really just want it to be meaningful to the [CrossFit] community.”