The purpose of this fact-based-opinionated-non-scholarly-reviewed blog article is to touch on the importance of taking the time to go through a beginner’s course for CrossFit. We will take some time here to talk about a few topics as to what to expect from the CrossFit coach and community, why the foundations course is so important, and how the course will generally be laid out. Then we can, hopefully, put to rest a lot of myths about the social media-based "dangers" of CrossFit.
The CrossFit Coach
A CrossFit coach is an individual who takes who enjoys taking life to the next level, is very friendly (or should be), and is has the client/member's personal well-being at heart. These are just a few attributes that a new individual starting CrossFit will experience when signing up to become a part of a good CrossFit gym. A CrossFit coach list of priorities that they live by, but here are a few very important ones:
1) Client/member safety
2) Instilling proper and appropriate technique on ALL lifts
3) Willing to scale any and all movements appropriate to each skill level
4) Friendly and uplifting personality
When you walk into your new CrossFit home, be rest assured that you will experience this type of person when beginning your CrossFit journey. The most important thing to the coach is that you're safe and remain injury-free. These individuals are extremely open-minded and are always uplifting. It's highly recommended to keep an open lines of communication with them at all times, so to 100% ensure your safety.
The CrossFit Community is a thing of beauty. Once your introduced to it by the coach, the manner in which you exercise will never be the same. The community is remarkably friendly, encouraging, and uplifting (just to name a few attributes). It doesn't matter the skill level, each and every individual is treated the same. There's no discrepancy (or there shouldn't be) between the fittest athlete and the least-fit athlete. It's a magnificent group that wants you to succeed and achieve all of your goals that you have written out.
Importance of CrossFit Foundations 101
These beginner courses (often referred to as CrossFit Foundations, Foundations of CrossFit, CrossFit 101, OnRamp, etc.) are quintessential to individuals who are seeking out CrossFit so to change their current workout/lifestyle routine. These courses are made to ensure the following (this is not a complete list):
1) Proper mechanics
2) Debug CrossFit myths
3) Define CrossFit
4) Guide you through the workouts
5) How the body is going to be trained so not to specialize
As you may have noticed before signing up with a CrossFit Box, there are a lot of "crazy" moves that require appropriate technique and a lot of coordination. This course forces and walks you through the mechanics with nothing more than a 8'-9' PVC Pipe, 15# barbell, 35# barbell, or 45# barbell. By the end of the course, your learning does not stop, however you will have gained the appropriate knowledge and laid down the correct movement patterns so to "graduate" to the general classes. By fully grasping what is laid out for you in this course, your CrossFit journey will continue to be filled with fun and learning.
CrossFit Foundations Layout
Most courses run for at least a couple of weeks before the new athlete may join in with the general class and are about an hour in duration. Throughout this course, you'll understand the general movement requirements for the 9 foundational movements of CrossFit and then be able to implement the moves within a WOD (Wokout of the Day). The daily structure is varies from box to box, however, it generally looks like so:
Day 1 (Monday)
air squat/back squat
Day 2 (Wednesday)
Intro to Push/Power Jerk
Day 3 (Friday)
Sumo Deadlift High Pull
Day 4 (Monday)
Medicine ball clean
Intro to Olympic lifting
- goal is to teach and understand the 3 positions within the clean (power position, hang position, and starting position) then move into understanding when and where the timing of the triple extension ones into play
Day 5 (Wednesday)
Intro to power snatch
Day 6 (Friday)
Review all moves with time left
These are the primary focal points. You will also be introduced to auxiliary moves throughout the foundations course that consist of (but aren't limited to):
KB Swing (Russian and American)
Tabata style of training
Once these 2 weeks are done, and the safety precautions are fully implemented, you'll be ready to begin your CrossFit journey!!