Bringing out the bully

Photo from The CrossFit Games

Photo from The CrossFit Games

I don’t care if you don’t like or made a vow never to try CrossFit. Just stop telling the whole world why.

CrossFit is not without it’s faults. There’s a thousand and one things that can make CrossFit better and CrossFitters know it. They do not have to be subjected to a public service announcement (PSA) every other day. Critics and haters justify their constant PSAs as “being concerned for the general public” or “to prevent people from being brainwashed by CrossFit boxes”.

Now, what qualifies someone to be “a fitness authority” when there are millions of coaches in the world? Is there such a thing as “Fitness Police”? Can they actually ban someone from doing CrossFit instead of just merely writing or posting on Facebook about why someone should stay away from CrossFit? Do they have the powers to persecute someone for doing CrossFit?

Imagine a school setting. CrossFit is the new kid on the block. The rest of the kids (Bodybuilding. Running, Cycling, etc) have been there for ages. They see CrossFit as a threat because suddenly their best friends forever (BFF), Gymnastics, Olympic Weightlifting, Strongman, Powerlifting have started hanging out with CrossFit and do cool stuff with them. They start to desperately scramble to show their BFFs why they are “cooler” by whispering to them nasty things about CrossFit, picking a fight with CrossFit over the tiniest issues, using Social Media to create fake accounts to spread rumors.

Sounds familiar? I might not be a behavioral expert, but I think it’s safe to say that the behavior these people are portraying is similar to bullies. I know, because I used to be one. Not my proudest moment, but hey, everyone makes mistakes right?

You want to do tricep curls and have 5 different ways of doing it? Cool. Here’s to bigger arms. Run 42km every weekend? Sure, if it makes you happy! Don’t hate me because I rather be doing cleans and snatches, learning to walking on my hands and trying to PR my 30 muscle-ups for time.

I think golf is boring, racing around a race track for 60+ laps is stupid and running marathons is the bad for the knees. Do I see the need to let the whole world and the people doing it know why every other day? No, because I rather be training hard, improving myself and enjoying watching people who don’t CrossFit enjoy what they are doing.

CrossFit is not perfect. But so is every other sport or exercise program. The bottom-line is: Do you legitimately want to warn people about the dangers of not doing CrossFit properly? Or do you simply just fear CrossFit?

If you are a fitness professional who genuinely wants to improve CrossFit and warn people about what not to do in CrossFit, then it’s time to embrace CrossFit. Because let’s face it. CrossFit is here to stay. As Lift Eat Get Big put it simply in this article: “If you truly want your sport to grow, embrace all of the people that are introduced to your way of lifting by Crossfit. Gyms and coaches who put their heads in the sand when it comes to CrossFit are gyms and coaches that will struggle greatly to make ends meet, for the most part..”

However if you are a fitness professional or an individual who fears the influence of CrossFit, do me a big favor and keep your hatred to yourself. When you open your mouth, write a “100 reasons why CrossFit sucks” article or write that Facebook status condemning CrossFit, you are showing the world that you are nothing but a bully, a coward and a paranoid pain in the ass.

Enough of the CrossFit bashing.

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2 Comments

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2 responses to “Bringing out the bully

  1. Meg

    I guess my problem with the CF way is that it claims that anybody at any fitness level can do it. I was injured by day 3. Having had been an athlete in the past but having become overweight and out of shape I had bought into the ploy that this is for everyone On the 3rd day of CF with no warm up before going straight into quick paced work out. I got injured in first cycle of the WOD. I was ticked at my self for getting hurt but I got really angry that the instructor not only didn’t warm us up first but then had the nerve to tell me that people that never worked out before may have difficulty with this type of workout and maybe CF was not going to fit my needs! I had lifted since age 16 and been a varsity athlete in college and continued to be active running and lifting until 3-4 yrs ago when life dealt me a blow and I gained 50 pounds and couldn’t exercise / lift. I wanted a place to be included but was made to feel inadequate. So much for CF helping to cure the country’s problem with obesity. Not to mention my friends that were in better shape and started with me were treated with kindness and encouragement and continue with CF… They now only have time for their CF friends and have bought into the idea that I would not fit in when I have suggested trying it again. And then CF people don’t understand why people think their fitness snobs.

    • tauhuayboy

      Hi Meg,

      I’m sorry to hear that you had such a bad experience when you tried CrossFit for the first time.

      The coach’s actions are horrible, but you need to know that every box is different. One of the problems with CrossFit is that boxes are not regulated by HQ, which is the number 1 reason why there are bad coaches like the one you encountered. Another issue is some coaches think that attending Level 1 certification, which is a two days course, automatically make them world class coaches.

      Good boxes usually have great coaches who have a ton of experience behind them. The one that I go to for example, we have a warm up before the strength portion and then finally the WOD. Great coaches like mine, usually know what your problem is after a while and will advise you to scale.

      Scaling is something a lot of people struggle with, because of ego. I sometimes struggle with it too, but you have to realize that having a big ego will invite injury.

      I understand what you mean by being ostracized by your friends who have fallen in love with CrossFit. The number 1 reason people fall in love with CrossFit is because of the community. We sweat and suffer together every day, which is why the bond is very strong. Outsiders who do not understand this think we are a cult, or as you said, “fitness snobs”.

      My advise would be to go box shopping, because there are thousand of boxes everywhere. Find one which you are comfortable in, where there is great coaching and a great community.

      Cheers,

      Shawn

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