At this point in the Open, it’s pretty obvious that we’re going to be seeing Thrusters. They’ve been a mainstay movement in the final workout since the Open started, and as a great test of strength and fitness, I can’t see them not being in the final workout. We also have yet to see double unders, another movement that I can’t see HQ allowing athletes to Regionals without showing their competency on. There’s speculation that ring muscle ups might rear their head, but with the quantity of bar muscle ups in 17.2, I don’t see what extra part of performance they would be testing that hasn’t been covered already, and they would also break the tradition of a nasty couplet to finish on.
Prediction No. 1
My prediction would be the following:
Of Alternating Single Arm Dumbbell Clusters and Double Unders.
I really think we’ll see dumbbell thrusters in 17.5, but I can’t see them going with double dumbbells. The movement alone is much harder than a barbell thruster, and if we’ll be using the same weights from the previous workouts this year, that would also be 5lbs heavier than the standard Rx barbell thruster weight. For this reason, I think we’ll see single arm dumbell thrusters. And for judging purposes, I think they’ll change them to clusters.
Without the movement being clusters, HQ will need to arbitrarily stipulate that you must complete x thrusters on your right side, and y thrusters on your left. Making the movement alternating will eliminate this. They could just then go with alternating thrusters, with change overs above head after lockout being allowed, but this seems inelegant. Alternating dumbbell clusters however fix this problem, as the dumbell has to touch both ends between the athletes feet before the next rep. They would however need to stipulate that an athlete needs to hit triple extension before going into a squat to catch the dumbell.
I’ve had a little practice at alternating dumbbell clusters and they almost feel fun; probably because of the novelty and unfamiliarity of the movement. This workout will also see the top athletes finishing in the 6-8 minute range. If we don’t have dumbell thrusters, I could easily see them keeping the same rep range with a barbell.
Prediction No. 2
I think it is also likely that we could see a repeat of 15.5:
Cals on Rower
Dave Castro likes to throw the odd curve ball, and repeating this workout would do just that. Everybody seems convinced that we’ll see double unders in the final workout (myself included), but it could be his thinking that any athlete finishing high enough in the Open to qualify for Regionals does not need to be tested on double unders; he assumes they will have them. I think it would be an odd choice to go this route as the second movement in the x.5 workouts are usually there to spike your heart rate, something double unders achieves just as well as a rower. We have also just had the rower in 17.4, so this is unlikely to come up.
Prediction No. 3
This is a bit of a wild card prediction, but it could happen:
With 75-50-25 Double Unders after each round.
This is purely speculated on Dave Castro’s ‘clue’ picture of a knife stabbed through a lump of meat. I can’t see man makers making a show in the Open, purely for judging standards. Will they introduce a standard for allowed feet width through each part of the movement? It would also be tough to judge whether an athlete has rotated too much through their hips on the rows.
Asides from the judging complexity, man makers at the current dumbbell weights would absolutely crush a lot of athletes. But hey, who knows.