Coach’s Corner: Are You Building Skills Backwards?

I blame Instagram. In the early days of CrossFit, if you found out a friend of yours from high school was into functional fitness, the only way to know who was fitter would be to show up at their gym and throw down. At some point, a guy named Dave (and some others) took that idea, and made it into the CrossFit Games.

That was a great idea! Knowing how you stack up versus your gym, the world, etc. is great- when you are collecting enough data to make that comparison worthwhile. However, social media makes it all too easy for people to post the highlights of their training- their best lifts, that one time they were able to handstand walk 50 feet, etc. without any context of what it means. Further, since most social platforms have time restrictions on video content (and since we have our own natural attention span restrictions) people tend to post a lot of heavy lifts, some high level gymnastics, but not the balance of what their training is and/or should be.
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What, When, Why: “Mobility” Tools

If you’ve been going to an affiliate for a while, you’ve likely noticed people pulling out strange props before class- all sorts of bands, balls, sticks, lengths of foam- and then sticking them in strange places. While there may be deeper individual reasons for doing this, most of these people are trying to prep themselves for the workout by making sure their muscles feel a little fresher or joints move a little easier. These implements all fall loosely under the term “mobility tools,” and today we’re going to dive into what they (broadly) are, why people use them, and when they are (and more specifically when they are NOT) appropriate.
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When and When NOT to Profit: Starting A CrossFit Gym Part 16

After being a coach at CrossFit South Brooklyn in NYC for 6 years I moved halfway across the country to open my own affiliate, CrossFit Lumos, in Austin, TX. This series will chronicle my experience opening the gym and what I am learning along the way. This article is the final piece of the adventure, before I’m a real live gym owner. Part 1. Part 2. Part 3. Part 4. Part 5. Part 6. Part 7. Part 8. Part 9. Part 10. Part 11. Part 12. Part 13. Part 14. Part 15.

CrossFit affiliates are beautiful little unicorns. The fitness space is littered with sages, trainers, and gyms that see their clients as little more than dollar signs, but affiliate owners tend to practice what they preach. Almost all of them had their own powerful experience with CrossFit and wanted to share that with their community. You can see that in the ways gyms operate- extremely member focused, with a lot of “perks” that often don’t come at extra cost.
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Coach’s Corner: Gym Safety Tips

📷:CrossFit Northlake

One of the things that separates CrossFit coaches from disinterested Globo Gym trainers is their level of professionalism and care for their members. First, we coaches pride ourselves in running a “tight ship” where every class runs like a tightly scripted and choreographed dance, with little to no “surprises.” Secondly, we know our members by name, work out alongside them (I hope- that’s its own article!), and build friendships with them that endure outside of the gym. Read More

CrossFit For Kids: Saved By The Barbell

Saved by the Barbell is an annual, world-wide CrossFit community Labor Day workout and fundraising effort to bring CrossFit to more kids everywhere.

Each year, rates of chronic diseases like type-2 diabetes, obesity, and liver disease – conditions once associated with the sick and elderly – rise among children, from toddlers to teenagers.

And yet each year, more schools reduce their physical education programs. Recess is becoming a thing of the past. Cafeteria food, deeply flawed nutrition education, and sugar-stocked vending machines only contribute to the problem. And schools where children grow up in poverty, food deserts, and disadvantaged communities pose even greater challenges to kids’ health.
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Older, Fitter: Smart Accessory Work

📷:CrossFit – Robert Kacer of Colliery CrossFit Ostrava

The gist of this series so far has mostly been about slowing down and finding things you might remove from your training to make progress. It’s fair to say there’s been somewhat of a “less is more” approach. While that is generally true for most (and especially for older) athletes with the goal of a broad, inclusive fitness, there are places where you can be adding real value to your fitness with smart accessory work. Below I’ll discuss a few areas that are commonly undertrained and thus could use a bit of shoring up.
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What, When, Why: Compression Gear

There was a time, long before Tobey Maguire was bitten by a CGI spider, that spandex bodysuits were the realm of bobsled teams and ballet dancers. Who’s to say if the recent glut of superhero movies have influenced fitness culture, but somewhere along the way it became common to see athletes from the professional (NBA players, pro endurance athletes, etc.) to the amateur (that bro Colin at your gym who is following a Mash Elite program) to suit up in stretchy sleeves, shirts, and tights. We don’t want you to be the last kid on your block wearing boring old loose exercise clothes, so today on What, When, Why we will examine Compression Gear, and its place and effect on your fitness!
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Fixing The Cracks: Starting A CrossFit Gym Part 15

After being a coach at CrossFit South Brooklyn in NYC for 6 years I moved halfway across the country to open my own affiliate, CrossFit Lumos, in Austin, TX. This series will chronicle my experience opening the gym and what I am learning along the way. This article is the final piece of the adventure, before I’m a real live gym owner. Part 1. Part 2. Part 3. Part 4. Part 5. Part 6. Part 7. Part 8. Part 9. Part 10. Part 11. Part 12. Part 13. Part 14.

CrossFit Lumos had been open for a little over a year, and some things were going very well. We had a great core community- motivated, caring, fun people who were in it for the right reasons, supported each other, and valued the service we were providing. I’d been lucky to hire three amazing coaches who all really enjoyed each other, covered for each other, and communicated well. People were having fun, the space was working out well, we had plans and ideas for how to progress and grow the gym… there just weren’t enough people there.
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Coach’s Corner: Coaching The “Older” Athlete

While the “ripe” coaches among us can certainly gain something from the following paragraphs, this one is aimed at those freshly picked coaches who’ve yet to experience approaching CrossFit from a more “mature” perspective. While the movements in CrossFit are universally important, scalable, and accessible, it can be beneficial to approach older athletes with a slightly different mindset. That doesn’t mean wrapping them in bubble tape and sitting them in the corner- read on, and see why!
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