I have been squatting for years without using any kind of lifting add-ons. It wasn’t that I didn’t think that they would help, but more that I didn’t think that I NEEDED them.
Today, I am still of the opinion that you don’t NEED them. BUT… well, let me tell you a little story.
In the 2014 CrossFit Open, our team StoneWay CrossFit finished 9th in the North West. We gave every bit of effort to earn that position, and we wanted to find some sponsors that we knew would help us push even harder.
One of our sponsors was Rocktape.
Rocktape makes CrossFit gear that is designed to help you move faster, and farther without the pain. This post is all about the Rocktape Knee Caps, but you should totally checkout the Rocktape tape as well. It’s the best thing that I’ve ever wrapped around my thumbs. Think high rep cleans, and holding a hook grip without having bloody thumbs.
But back to the Knee Caps…
Rocktape sent us their Knee Caps which I had seen many athletes wearing. And with so much explosive movement in CrossFit that ends with your body bottoming out in the bucket of a squat, hard, I was very excited to see what wearing the Knee Caps would feel like.
My first experience with the Rocktape Knee Caps
We were practicing the hang snatch CrossFit Regionals workout. It’s the team workout, where you only get 2 attempts at your heaviest hang snatch. Which means you DO NOT want to miss a rep.
The hang snatch weights that I wanted to hit were 205, and 215. But on a bad day both of these could feel impossible to snatch.
Usually when I get up to those weights, I’ll drop into the squat, and my knees will pop and protest. They let me know that they aren’t happy that I slam into the bottom of my squat with 200+ pounds above my head.
But like I said, this was the first day that I had the Rocktape Knee Caps on…
…I had 205 on the bar, stepped up to the weight, pulled past my knees, accelerated the bar, extended my hips, and slammed into the bottom of my squat. The weight stabilized overhead, and I stood up. What was different? It was the bottom of the squat. The Knee Caps made my knees feel springy and lubricated. I mean, I know they weren’t actually more lubricated, but that’s what it felt like. Like butter!
Knowing what the bottom of the squat felt like with heavy weight, I loaded 215 onto the bar, pulled it, and slammed into the bottom of the squat. Caught it, and stood up.
I cannot tell you how awesome it is to have confidence in what your knees are going to do at the bottom of a snatch or clean.
The Rocktape Knee Caps are just great!
I went on to hit both 205 and 215 at the North West CrossFit Regionals event, and our team finished 8th in the region.
There’s more… The Robbery!
This story actually continues…
On the Friday night of the North West Regionals, my girlfriend and I were fast asleep when we were awakened by some rumbling outside of our bedroom. I was half asleep so I was trying to figure out why someone would be at our place… Then our bedroom door opened! All of the lights were on outside of the bedroom, so all I could see was a silhouette. The person who opened our door yelled “oh crap”, slammed our bedroom door, ran to our front door, out the front door, hopped into a car and drove off.
Apparently he wasn’t expecting to see us at home at 10pm on a Friday night. I guess he didn’t know the CrossFit Regionals were happening…
We are sooooooo glad that he wasn’t aggressive. But when he was running out of the house he managed to grab my backpack, which was full of all my CrossFit gear from the previous days competition. Rocktape Knee Caps, tape, and gloves, Reebok lifting shoes, RPM jump rope, and everything else that I had in my backpack totally over $1200 (including my wallet and car keys).
You know… I would have been totally fine with him stealing my wallet. He can go use my credit cards. It will be a hassle, but I can just call the bank and get it all replaced.
But when you take a persons personal things. Things that you can replace, but they won’t be quite the same. That’s what pisses me off!
And to make things even worse! Our insurance company StateFarm found a loophole and wouldn’t replace any of the stolen items. So, don’t use StateFarm if you’re looking for a quality insurance company.
Why Rocktape ROCKS
After catching wind of the robbery Rocktape promptly shipped me a brand new pair of Knee Caps. I cannot be anymore grateful to Rocktape for #1 making a great product that helps CrossFit athletes stay safe, and perform better, but #2 being a human company that actually cares for their customers and athletes.
I HIGHLY RECOMMEND Rocktape as a product (Knee Caps), and a company! Thank you MJ at Rocktape!