It’s covered in the mainsite FAQs http://www.crossfit.com/cf-info/faq.html#General3, but here’s our take on this question.
Actually, I’m going to lift a quote Kempie made in the this post; http://www.crossfitbrandx.com/index.php/forums/viewthread/4777/#65547
It says it better than anything else I’ve seen.
There are folks doing extra work and it’s very clear after even a short time that they are digging themselves into a hole, quickly. On the other hand there are folks who seem to have magical powers and do extra work, hammer the WOD and do this day after day, month after month. I’m gonna go out on a limb here and say the second category is the result of a long slow build up in work capacity. What started out as managing to stand upright after a WOD moved to a little skillwork. After some months that wasn’t enough, a short ME session in the morning was manageable. A little later, well that skill work wasn’t enough - how about we sneak some rowing in there cos those banjo’s are getting louder ... and we won’t mention painstorm
But seriously, one baby step at a time as your capacity to recover improves and also as you have the ability to identify and target weaknesses. Most folks that come into CF have that many weaknesses that to focus on even a small percentage would leave no time for the WOD. Just do the WOD, let everything get better at it’s own pace and see where your real weaknesses lie when things start to slow down. For most folks you are gonna have a long run before that happens.
For those folks that think that the WOD ain’t enough I would suggest the following.
Do the CFWU - scale it at the start, remember it’s a warm-up but work until you can do the full monty and just feel loose and ready for your workout.
Hammer your WOD - Fran in 5 minutes is a whole different beast to 20 minutes. Scale so you can go hard and blast it. Keep notes so you can track your progress (Check JDG’s posts for how that is done)
Identify one or two gymnastic skills you want to improve and work on them afterwards. Handstands, kipping pull-ups, hollow rocks? Your choice.
Or how about the olympic lifts, do you have your front squat and overhead squat down? Your deadlift? If yes then start working through the Burgener warm-up. If no then check the resources on crossfit.com, practice and post some vid for us to look at. An empty bar is the most you need here folks, but start with PVC and only move up a little when the movement is as good as you can get it
With the above I would say there is easily enough to keep everyone busy without beating down the body with other silly stuff you don’t yet need or are not ready for.
Having said that, if you compete in a sport, or just plain like a physical activity like running or cycling, by all means keep it up!
Crossfit is supposed to prepare you for life and all its enjoyments.
Just don’t think you need to be adding anything to Crossfit to improve your fitness. It does that just fine plain and unadorned.