Man Maker: The Toughest Crossfit Move

5th January 2020
Do you like to challenge your own limits and test yourself in each of your workouts? If so, don't miss the opportunity to learn the "man maker". A very demanding and full-body move.

Are you looking for a super demanding workout? Then the man maker might be your jam! If you want to add some challenges to your daily fitness routine, this is a fantastic option. The ‘maker of men’ is still unknown to many athletes, who are deprived of enjoying their great virtues.

One of the best qualities of this move is that it doesn’t demand a lot of special equipment. You’ll only need ample space to exercise plus a pair of dumbbells or kettlebells and you’ll be all ready to start.

Of course, in spite of the name, this isn’t a move made exclusively for guys. Women looking for a challenge can also add it to their training plan without problems.

If you’d like to give it a try, keep reading! In today’s article, we’ll cover everything you need to add the man maker movement to your routine.

Incorporate the man maker into your workout

It’s very important that you follow some basic guidelines to add this complex full-body workout in the right way. Doing so will ensure you’re always safe and can reap all the benefits possible! By understanding exactly which muscles are involved, you’ll know exactly how to do every move correctly.

We’ll thoroughly explain every step needed to perform the man maker the right way. As we mentioned before, you can do it interchangeably with kettlebells or with a pair of dumbbells.

How to perform the man maker

Step 1: rowing plank

To begin, place yourself in a plank position with the two weights on either side of your hands. Remember that, for this posture, you must keep your abdomen firm and your legs straight.

Once ready, proceed to take a dumbbell or kettlebell with one hand and perform a row. This should be done while keeping a straight plank.

Once you finish one rep with that arm, leave the weight on the floor and do the same move with the other arm.

Step 2: squat and push press

Once you’re done with the rowing, jump your feet forward while still in the plank position and then get up into a squat. This is the same as if you were doing a burpee.

If you’re working with dumbbells, you can do the next steps without weights. If, on the other hand, you’re working with a kettlebell, you’ll need to take it before standing up. Make sure you gain momentum!

Burpees are a great exercise to eliminate holsters.

From that squat position, and with the load in your hands, you should push yourself up to bring the dumbbells or weights to a clean or “loaded” position.

As soon as you finish that movement, go back again and return to the squat position. Make sure your hips stay below the line of the knees, which should be completely bent at a 90-degree angle.

Step 3: overhead press

For the final stage of this move, you’ll have to stand up once more and extend your arms above your head. The movement is nothing more than a push press or shoulder press.

Ideally, you’ll take the momentum from the squat thrust to move your arms and lift the weight more easily.

The man maker: a very complete movement

Although it might be hard to believe, all three steps outlined above are a single rep of the man maker. As you’ll see, this is a complete movement that will become more difficult with the more reps you do.

Because it involves so many different muscles, you can even make a full day’s routine using just the man maker, if you do enough reps and several series. It acts as both a bodyweight move and an aerobic one, given that you’re going up and down fairly quickly.

Now, what muscles are specifically involved and demanded in these movements? Here’s what will feel sore the next day–hint: it’s almost everything.

Upper body

Since the man maker starts from a plank position, the entire core is responsible for maintaining stability. Because of this, you’ll be working the abs and the lower back.

On the other hand, in the next step of the exercise, you’ll exercise your back and dorsal muscles. Because you’re staying in plank, it adds difficulty to the workout.

the man maker will boost your metabolism

Finally, in the last phase of the man maker, what we do a push press. This is, of course, a signature shoulder move. The great thing about it is that we take advantage of the upward phase of the squat to transfer that momentum to the shoulders.

The weight of the dumbbells or kettlebells will add another layer of difficulty to the upper body workout.

Lower body

You’ll be working your legs all throughout the man maker. As you take your hands off the floor to perform the first row in plank position your legs will be taking most of the weight of your body. While all lower muscle groups participate, the hamstrings are the main protagonists here.

As you follow along with the move, you’ll be involving the quadriceps, buttocks, tibials, soles, and hamstrings when performing the squat. This is both in the descending and the ascending phase. Due to the completeness of this workout, you’ll usually work with few repetitions for each series.

Finally, it’s a good idea to work with each of the moves that make up the man maker on their own. Once you feel comfortable performing them individually, you can start putting them together. This is a powerful CrossFit move that’ll boost your metabolism!

This will ensure you keep proper form and don’t hurt yourself. Are you ready to show off your new muscles? Try it out for yourself!

  • Reebok CrossFit ONE Movement Demo “Man Maker”. 2013. Youtube Reebok CrossFit ONE. https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=iMNnvhg1JcM
  • Heather Eastman. The Total-Body Dumbbell Fix: Man-Maker Mayhem. Bodybuilding.com. https://www.bodybuilding.com/content/the-total-body-dumbbell-fix-man-maker-mayhem.html