Should you try CrossFit? What are the positives, negatives and everything in-between?
So firstly, it should be understood that CrossFit is a relatively old training system, which was described and defined by Greg Glassman. What I mean by old is that it is a training system that has been used before the company CrossFit Inc. defined it, marketed it and sold it as a fitness regime. CrossFit over the last 10 years has created a pretty big divide on whether it is good for you or not. I think I should mention that I personally am a crossfitter and I do really love it. I will try and be as objective as possible.
Now the good:
CrossFit gets you fit, it gets you strong, it increases your mobility (which you need more than you think) creates a community which is awesome fun and makes you feel good, its addictive, its hard work but its worth it.
You will see fast results with CrossFit. These positives definitely should be felt when you engage in CrossFit.
At CrossFit Tone, we definitely focus on technique and mobility first then moving on to increasing the load, intensity and volume once you are capable.
Here is why people are negative about it:
The industry is not regulated enough. There is a massive issue with instructors who have no physical movement education being able to do a level 1 CrossFit course and then opening their own training facility. You wonder why there are horror stories in CrossFit. This is why. If you go to a gym with good coaches, who know what they are doing you will be ok!
Finally some coaches have a ‘no pain, no gain’ mentality and I think this almost bullying of people to work harder can be really detriment. Yes you need intensity to get fitter but you also need to be working within and know your limits especially to start with.
As a coach, you need to pick up on when someone is struggling physically and when someone is struggling mentally. They are different and determine whether you encourage that person to go harder to scale their workout to suit their ability.
There is no point in flogging someone to injury. Building their confidence first is key.
So what should you look for?
Exercise science degree/cert 3+4 in fitness
Olympic lifting level 1
CrossFit level 1 + 2
Many years of experience
Coaches that understand your limitations when you are starting are invaluable.
They should be able to change any workout to suit anyone for example even a 60 year old with no exercise background should be able to do movements at the most basic level and a coach should be able to realise this. Otherwise you are just asking for injury.
Just like any gym or PT, there are going to be boxes that are not as good as others. Enter social media, where people are able to post these examples of ridiculously bad form or coaching and a negative image for CrossFit is exacerbated. But when you see a person doing something clearly stupid that is not the norm, you just avoid these people and gyms like the plague.
When you see a gym full of happy, healthy, fit people with correct form (its not that hard to see the bad from good) then you know you are in safe hands. Just use your brain, ask around, do your research and you’ll be able to choose a box which puts the safety of their client first and makes sure they know how to avoid injury.
Interested in kick starting your training and seeing what CrossFit Tone is all about? Grab our 2 week Pink Pass Trial – just $39 for unlimited training sessions!
Want more? Check out our other blogs on training:
And some of our blogs on CrossFit
About the Author
Elle has a passion for women's fitness and helping girls improve their self-image through fitness. Her vision is to create a CrossFit gym, which allows women to learn how to move, build their strength, learn to be healthy and gain respect for their bodies showing them how amazing they really are! Find out more