Oyster Physiology 101

Oct 6th, 2017

Category: Latest News

Oyster Physiology 101

I know, since when do the happenings of shellfish belong on a CrossFit blog? Well this may come as a surprise but we; as CrossFit athletes, can learn a lot from these bivalve mollusks. Just stay with me on this one.

Lets look at the oyster in more depth, they are small irregular shaped shellfish that live in marine or brackish waters in groups called Oyster-beds. They resided within two heavily calcified shells which they control with a strong adductor muscle. Using this muscle they are able to open up to allow food, such as plankton particles floating in the water to enter the shells where the oyster will eat them up to get stronger and bigger. What an amazing system this fish uses to pull nutrients out of the water but it is not fool proof. In some cases when the oyster opens up to collect food it can bring in grit or sand at the same which is not great for the oyster at all, Their thick shells are only good for protection against things trying to get inside not things trying to get out of their shell. So in time, inevitably the grit inside the shell will wear a hole from the inside out, damaging the Oyster and leaving it crippled, Right? Wrong!

Oysters are resilient and they don’t go down with out a fight! Oysters have developed a process where they secrete a mucus from inside their shells called “Te mothproof pearl” to encompass the foreign invader before it can bore a hole through their shell and leave them venerable. Over time this mucus will form a firm smooth layer and then the oyster can store it away with out risking its life – this is how Pearls are made. Hope this was educational for everyone and we all learn to appreciate just how amazing Oysters are.



A little confused? Here is a quick key to find the moral of the story.
You are the Oyster, Your shells are your fitness levels and when you go to the gym you are “feeding” to make yourself stronger. The Grit is that movement you hate or just can’t get the hang of. To avoid getting a hole in your shell or have a WOD fall apart in front of you it would be a good idea to come down to open gym and put some work or “mucus” into it and convert that nasty piece of grit into a Pearl. Lets turn our Obstacles into Opportunities!