Barbell club

Open to All Access members of CrossFit Auckland, as well as non-members by application. Members of CrossFit Auckland Barbell Club have access to four 90-minute sessions per week from 5:00pm – 6:30pm Monday to Thursday and receive monthly programming.

Inside of these sessions there are two divergent streams of programming, both of which are designed to compliment your regular training regimen:

  • CFAK Olympic Weightlifting – fast lifts
  • CFAK Raw Strength – slow lifts

We provide coaching to all age groups, including youth, junior, senior and masters categories, programmed by Alex Porter.

We are a competitive weightlifting club, registered with Olympic Weightlifting New Zealand (OWNZ). We have CrossFit Auckland athletes holding records and winning titles in both local and national competitions.

You don’t have to compete in weightlifting to be a member of the CrossFit Auckland Olympic Weightlifting club, and membership to CFAK OWL is free to All Access members. However, if you would like to compete, you will also need to register with OWNZ at the beginning of each year, or part year if you are a new member.

CFAK OWL focuses primarily on improving the technical execution of the Snatch, Clean and Jerk and related lifts. This program is intended to supplement your regular training regimen or can be a stand-alone program to improve explosiveness, strength, and coordination, in addition to improving confidence with the fast lifts.


Programming is designed to suit the needs of athletes of varying levels of development and experience. A programming cycle lasts from 4-12 weeks depending on the season.

Athletes can expect to Snatch, Clean and Jerk, perform dynamic pulling drills as well as skill transfer drills and other supplemental exercises for the Olympic lifts. When you begin we will assess your capability and assign you into the appropriate grade for your level of development.

For those who require customized training in the Olympic lifts, or have identified an area needing development, we can design a program suited to your specific needs and goals.  Click through to Customised Programming to learn more.

There are three things in life you can’t have too much of; there’s no such thing as being too strong, too rich or too good-looking. I’m afraid we can’t help you with the last two, but we know a ton about how to get you strong.

Our CrossFit Auckland Raw Strength program is primarily focused on the slow-lifts: Squats, Deadlifts and Presses. The program may also feature elements of Strongman training.

Not to be confused with bodybuilding, this program is for those wanting to increase your strength levels outside of your existing training regimen. You can expect to get stronger and firmer as your body gains muscle, but this is not a bulking program. As Westside Barbell’s Louie Simmons once said, “Big isn’t strong. Strong is strong.”

Each programming cycle typically lasts 4-6 weeks, with regular re-testing.

At CrossFit Auckland we invest in the development of classic weightlifting and the auxiliary lifts as staples of our training repertoire to capitalise on their athletic benefits. The Olympic lifts provide improvements in strength, particularly in the lower body, speed, explosiveness and the ability to safely absorb force. This makes Olympic weightlifting an ideal strength and conditioning program for those playing power sports.

For those interested in developing strength at a less technical skill level, we have introduced CrossFit Auckland Raw Strength primarily focused on the slow-lifts: Squats, Deadlifts and Presses. The program may also feature elements of Strongman training.

So when are you ready to join Barbell Club?

It’s appropriate to attend Barbell Club when you have adequately developed foundational abilities in terms of strength, flexibility and basic athletic movement patterns. In Barbell Club the exercises are expressed in their full capacity under load, making it important that some minimum criteria be met before entering this training group.


If you’re beginning strength training in these movements for the first time, we recommend a minimum three month period of consistent training to allow adequate strength development and progressive skeletal loading.


Flexibility can be measured by testing proficiency in movements without losing form:

  • Back Squat below parallel
  • Front Squat below parallel
  • Overhead Squat in a Snatch width grip
  • Rack position
  • Jerk Overhead position
  • Snatch and Clean start position from the floor.

Your ability or inability to achieve the necessary positions to perform these exercises will identify adequate flexibility, or give you an indication of where you require improvements.


It’s important that foundational movements are established as well as a grasp of the associated technical language; exercise names and position variations.

I think I’m ready, so how do I join?
Speak with Alex Porter about what you want to get out of joining the CrossFit Auckland Barbell Club; if you’re an existing member, we will already have a good sense of your current athletic abilities or we can assess your movements in your starting weeks.

Please also speak with us if you feel you meet the criteria but have an injury history or limitations that need to be considered and taken into account.

What if I have flexibility limitations?
Inflexibility in the ankles, hips, thoracic spine, shoulders and wrists will definitely limit your ability to perform the Olympic and power lifts, and left un-addressed could create unnecessary opportunity for injury.

Flexibility or range of movement is improved over time as a result of a balanced training regime focussing on proper movement techniques and expression of full range of movement through good positions.  You can do allot to speed up this process by addressing your specific areas of limitation:

  • Perform warm up and mobilisations prior to training.
  • Stretch and mobilise directly post workout before leaving the gym.
  • Hang out in mobilisation positions in the evening while catching up on your favourite show.
  • Book private coaching with a coach and have them assess and prescribe a mobility and remedial program specific to your needs.

The key is to do a little every day, and remember if it’s not creating some immediate change, try something else.

No problem. You don’t have to be a member of CrossFit Auckland to become a member of the CrossFit Auckland Barbell Club or CFAK OWL. If you are interested in weightlifting or strength development, or maybe you’re a member of another club but need help with training Olympic lifts or competing, we can help you.

Schedule your free consultation with Coach Alex Porter to discuss what you want to get out of joining the CrossFit Auckland Barbell Club.

Fee: $59/wk. Requires a 3-month minimum commitment.

Note: Individuals with little or no prior experience with the barbell lifts will be required to attend our Basic Training course – a six session introduction to the foundational movements.

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