Category Archives: General

The Rogue Way

George Selden's patent for the automobile

No one on the Rogue team is Henry Ford, but we did build our business around a very similar principle. For Ford, it was the idea of providing a quality automobile that the average person could afford– a goal he famously achieved through innovations in design and manufacturing. It wasn’t an easy road, though. As seen in the photo above, George Selden and the Association of Licensed Automobiles owned a patent that basically held other manufacturers hostage for years. It took the determination of Ford to fight and finally defeat that monopoly, opening the door to the modern auto industry.

I think this drive toward delivering a “quality product the average person can afford” is what makes Rogue Fitness unique, as well.  Like Ford, we did not invent racks, squat stands, yokes, barbells or bumper plates. What we’ve done is work tirelessly to give our customers the best possible value in our industry. It’s what we think you deserve.

The Rogue Way

1) We design, build and warehouse at Rogue.  We own our manual MIG/TIG welders, robotic welders, CNC machines and presses.   Our footprint spans 400,000 square feet between manufacturing and warehousing.

2) We ship orders, big or small, in one business day.  The only thing that would keep us from doing this is stock levels. Lucky for us, we manufacture our own equipment.  The industry norm is 6-8 weeks for racks and full gym outfitting. We cut this down by 98%.  This was done by stocking everything we make– hence the need for a 170,000 Sq Ft distribution center.

3) Build equipment with options.  Our Infinity Rig has exactly what its name describes– an infinite amount of options.  We have built small garage gyms to 300’ CrossFit Games pull-up rigs.  And for extra convenience, everything is built in families.  Our latest family of items is the Monster family: big 3X3 steel tubes with 1” hardware.

Most other manufacturers build racks with large welded frames that are hard to paint, ship and/or setup.  We chose a different path

4) Unique in Construction Design.  Our design process starts and ends with the items described above in mind.  We take a rack or squat stand and build them so we can ship them to a customer efficiently. Parts can be used in multiple products and will stand up to any abuse that can be thrown at them.

This is achieved by laser cutting, robotic welding, and CNC machines—all highly repeatable processes that allow us to streamline our operations.  These are the things we patent.  We cannot patent a rack, but we can and do patent how we make it.

Rogue JCup

5) Listen to the Customer.  Our equipment is crafted from the culmination of years of valued customer feedback.  From the beginning, our pull-up rigs were built for CrossFit affiliates and other high volume gyms.  We didn’t build some multi-station piece of equipment that only one person can use effectively.  We designed for symmetry and volume.  Our patented Infinity rig design is a repeatable rectangle that alternates from 4’ to 6’ spans.  This enables the coach or trainer to look down a line and see any discrepancy in movement, allowing for clear, uniform coaching cues.

Rogue Facebook Conversation

6) Safety in Design.  The best example I can give you is that, almost every day, someone asks us to put something on the bottom of our pull-up rigs.  There are many manufacturers that do this– add structural support at the base, etc.  When someone falls from a pullup bar and hits that piece of steel, however, it tends to result in disaster.  This is why we have chosen not to abide such requests, choosing instead to address these concerns in every step of our design process.  From the rubber padding on the ring hanger to the Dollamur matting at the CrossFit Games, we lead with Safety First.

Rogue Safety Mat

 

And so, from Henry Ford to Louie Simmons, we remain “Often imitated but never duplicated.”

Henry Ford & Louie Simmons

Not a day goes by that we are not trying to make everything we do better, and that includes building up our team that makes it all happen.  We stand now at 160 Rogue team members, and our goal of 500 is within reach by the year 2015.

Thanks,

Bill Henniger

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Origins

People often ask about how we got into manufacturing and selling athletic equipment. For some it started with CrossFit and gearheads on the CrossFit message board.

In November of 2007 I came across this post. I responded with two product ideas: One was a sturdy glute ham developer that shipped unassembled to save on cost. The second was a wood plyo box with tapered sides that also shipped unassembled. Kris told me later that he had no idea about how to get a GHD made, but had a wood shop in the garage. He went to the store, bought some plywood, made a jig and built his first 20″ plyo box complete with predrilled screw holes and labeled sides to make assembly easy. He shipped that box to me and I put them on my website.

Here is a picture of the original box, that is still in use at my gym.

His boxes were a hit and I introduced him to Bill Henniger who started carrying his boxes as well. Eventually he ended up providing all of the Made in the U.S.A, CNC cut wood products manufactured by Rogue Fitness including, the Rogue Games Boxes, our extremely popular Rogue Wood Rings and of course, his original product, the Rogue Wood Plyo Boxes.

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Black Metal Plates

Not all metal plates are created equal.

For the most part, metal plates are not there to look pretty, they are there to add more weight to the bar when you run out of bumpers or run out of room for bumpers. They are also the only way to get to precise weights so you can go up in increments smaller than 20 pounds at a time. Most metal plates will get the job done. However, many of the plates available at local sporting goods stores are particularly low quality. Generally this does not cause problems, since they are designed to be used for slow lifts, and for the most part are used solely for bench press by their intended audience. When CrossFitters, buy these cast iron plates, they will work well for a while. After all, they are using them with bumper plates that are taking the impact of the drops. However, particularly with the 2.5 and 5 pound plates, those repeated sudden stops can be enough to cause the plates to break.

The Ader Black Plates, being made from higher quality cast iron, and are much less likely to break due to impact when dropped with bumpers.

Since they are available in weights as low as 1.25 pounds, they are also an inexpensive way to go up 2.5 pounds at a time for lifts like shoulder press, where often 5 pounds can be the difference between an easy lift and an impossible one.

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Rogue Deadlift Bar Jack

Changing out deadlift weight can get very difficult when the weight gets heavy and can even end up being dangerous. Because you do not take the same care to set your back as you are trying to lift half the bar with one hand and slide a bumper on with the other, it can be an accident waiting to happen.

The Rogue Deadlift Bar Jack solves this problem. You simply slide the jack under the bar, pull back, and the weight is lifted, allowing you to easily and safely add or remove weight from the bar.

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New Rogue KG Bumpers

You may be one of the many who have found that if you can’t talk in kilograms, you can’t really be part of the Olympic Weightlifting world. In the past, this often meant that in order to avoid constantly doing conversions, you needed to buy extremely expensive kilogram plates.

That is no longer the case with the new KG Rogue Bumpers. They are the same high quality solid rubber bumpers with stainless steel inserts that you have come to expect from Rogue. However, the low price will surprise you. Shipping is even included.

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Compression Gear

You have seen several top competitors wearing compression gear and may have wondered: Does it work, and if so, how does it work?

Compression stockings have been used in the medical field for years for conditions ranging from congestive heart failure, to varicose veins. They have also been used to reduce the risk of deep venous thrombosis in hospitalized patients.

In recent years, the use of compression gear has expanded into athletics. They first appeared in endurance sports, and now use has spread to many different sports.

The primary rationale behind wearing compression gear is that it enhances venous return leading to increased endurance capacity. It is also felt that because muscles are kept more compact, balance and proprioception are improved and muscle fatigue is minimized.

Several studies have shown a performance benefit:

Researchers in Germany showed that athletes wearing compression socks ran longer and hit higher speeds on the treadmill than the control group that was not wearing them. Effect of compression stockings on running performance in men runners.

Researchers in Austrailia showed an increase in the oxygen concentration in the muscles when wearing compression gear. The effects of wearing lower-body compression garments during endurance cycling.

After this week’s open workout, many of us are looking for a way to recover faster and reduce soreness. For many, compression gear may be the answer.

There is even more evidence that compression gear may reduce soreness and reduce recovery time than there is for increased performance:

This study showed that compression stockings reduced delayed onset muscle soreness after running a 10k. Graduated compression stockings: physiological and perceptual responses during and after exercise.

This study has even more direct application for CrossFitters. It showed that full length compression stockings reduced soreness after plyometric training. Lower Limb Compression Garment Improves Recovery from Exercise Induced Mucle Damage in Young Active Females.

We offer several types of Compression Gear, from Calf Stockings and Compression Shorts to Full Length Recovery Tights and our brand new stylish and functional Rogue Compression Socks.

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Rogue Comp Matting

Keeping your athletes safe while still allowing them to push their limits, has always been an issue. The problem is that most mats that are available are made for gymnastics, and will not stand up to the abuse of a busy CrossFit Affiliate.

Made in the U.S.A. by Dollamur, Rogue Comp Matting is the answer to outfitting your training or competition area.

The only mats chosen by the U.S.A. Olympics. This matting is used in premier martial arts, cheerleading, and gymnastics facilities. Whether you need a place for your clients to practice handstands, handwalking and tumbling, want a padded area for stretching and situps, want to add an extra measure of safety below your Infinity Rig or Wall Mount Unit, or even mat an area for martial arts, you will not find a better product.

The matting can be used for both temporary and permanent installations. It is so easy to lay and reroll the mats, that it can be done by a single person. The matting always lays flat and rolls tight for easy storage.

The 10 foot by 6 foot sections of matting are designed to work with Rogue Infinity Rigs and Wallmount Systems. They can be applied down the center of a pullup rig and also around the perimeter, forming a safe environment for your athletes to train. Custom sizes are also available.

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Rogue War Bar

One of the most indispensable tools out there for teaching Olympic Weightlifting has always been a piece of PVC pipe. However, the pipe is not the exact diameter of the bar that you or your clients will eventually use, and it lacks knurling marks to use a reference for where to place your hands.

The Rogue War Bar solves these problems. It is a true 28 mm diameter plastic bar with the correct knurling marks for olympic weightlifting, making the transition to a barbell as smooth as possible. Your clients will not have to relearn the hook grip on the bar, and you can teach the correct grip width from the beginning, before any bad habits form.

While it is not a load bearing bar, it is much more durable than a piece of PVC and will last quite a bit longer.

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Gibbon Slacklines

Slacklining, an activity that came out of the rock climbing community, was embraced by CrossFit due to the fact that like gymnastics rings, the slackline is an inherently stable system that only becomes unstable when the human element is introduced. Learning to walk on a slackline involves learning to quiet the involuntary muscle movements that cause the line to vibrate, which is similar to learning to stop shaking when supporting yourselft on the rings. However, slacklining takes all this to a much higher level.

Rogue offers two different Gibbon Slacklines for variations on the sport.

1. The Classic is perfect for the beginner or diverse slackliner. Thicker webbing and two lengths make this the best line for any location or skill level.  It can even be used as a portable rail for skis, snowboards and skateboards!

2. The Jibline is for the more adventurous type. Thinner webbing and much more dynamic, the Jibline is ideal for tricks and jumps. This line takes balance to a new level!  Thin, flexible webbing provides a trampoline like effect and rubber based print provides added grip.  The low mounting height is for safe handling.

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Rogue Deadlift Platform

The Rogue Deadlift Platform not only protects your floor, it allows you to do band deadlifts outside of a power rack without sinking anchors into your floor.

There are multiple options for filling the platform, you can use eight 2×2 foot by 1.5 inch rubber tiles, you can use a combination of plywood and tiles or you can use a combination of horse stall mats and plywood.

The band pegs are oversized so that they can be used with standard bars or even longer specialty bars such as a log bar for athletes training for strongman events.

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