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August 27, 2012

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Hey Freddy, thought I'd drop you a line and let you know i've been following your site and blogs for a couple years now and I honestly think you've got the best site and gym going. I'm in the Air Force and been all over the world and I've been doing CrossFit since 2008 and get a lot of great ideas and insight from checking out your site. This article in particular was awesome and so true!

Keep up the great work!

Eric DiBartolomeo

I can honestly and proudly admit that not one athlete of mine, or my staff, has ever been injured while doing training in our facility. Im not saying it wont happen some day but its next to impossible. As far as the education goes i know exactly what you mean when you say you can read, test, pass and still not fully understand or absorb the material. However, that, imo, does not mean the material is no good. It means it needs to be studied longer, reread, challenged, and as you say applied by tinkering with actual human beings. You can tinker with a client until your blue in the face, unless you read about thing like bioenergetics, it will take a lifetime of tinkering to even scratch the surface. Its up to us as coaches/trainers to take small steps from the research we have studied in order to advance the athlete and industry

Chris, Are you telling me that in all your athletic endeavors you were never injured while training? Are you saying that of all the athletes that have trained at Next Level Speed, none have ever been injured while training? If so, then I will admit that I am definitely doing something wrong. IMHO- you can read all the books you want, take the tests regarding those books, and get the pieces of paper saying you passed those tests. In the end, it's still the tinkering you do with actual human beings and what you learn hands on from coaches who are smarter/more experienced than you that best serves your education as a strength and conditioning coach.

So you spent 33 years teaching something you dont know anything about? Thats a smart philosophy. And your injury rate shouldnt be low
It should be non existent. I wont get in a pissing contest with you either. Im not saying im right about this but i will say i put in the effort to study so i can have an opinion. There is enough info readily available out there for you to read and be educated. There is no excuse to be in the business this long and not know this stuff. You can sling it however you want....

Chris, I won't get into a pissing contest with you. I have been weight training and interval training since I was 14 years old. That's 33 years of experience. Do I have a piece of paper from a college that says I studied "exercise"? No. Do I work with tons of different bodies every day and constantly strive to come up with what works the best for a cookie cutter program? Yes, and I think I have been very successful so far. The real problem is CrossFit is just that, a cookie cutter fitness program. What is good for ten people might not be ideal for three or four others. I make it work though and injury rate at One World is extremely low for the amount of people we have trained over the years. I can live with that.

Actually you dont know if you did or not. The same kid who is doing deadlifts incorrectly in the picture above might be reading this blog post and taking your "plyo" advice. How do you think that is going to go? Your easy to dismiss crossfit but maybe you should rethink what your posting as acceptable. There is a very strict method to performing/coaching box jumps and if overlooked could lead to serious injury. Try not to laugh it off so easily...

hehehe....yes, I wrecked and injured everyone with those 55 box jumps.

Its funny how you preach to people about cleaning up their movements in one breath and then prescribe box jumps in the next. The REAL problem that all you crossfitters will never understand is that working out is a science that you never studied. Shame on you for condemning bad form on a deadlift and handing out shitty plyo workouts. It is just as bad for someone to do a deadlift with poor form as it is for someone to do box jumps with bad form/unstable. I know its a fad to hate on how bad crossfit form is but heres a new fad. Its not your form that is shitty it is your lack of knowledge in general.

Yep spot on. There seems to be more and more captions on the CF vids saying "bad form here". Do as I say, not do as I do?

Hey Freddie, You may want to forward your blog post to your buddies at HQ...

http://community.crossfit.com/article/snatch-strategies-crossfit-workouts-and-competitions

Somebody has lost their damn mind up in that place.

FORM, CONSISTANCY, INTENSITY! In that order.

To be fair, the picture you have up is what I have actually seen TAUGHT at a CrossFit, not just seen at competitions. What do you expect when it only takes a weekend to get your CrossFit "cert"?? I'm not sure, but don't you simply need a Level 1 to become an affiliate?? :S Let's be real honest here, this is much more of a problem with the business model, then it is with just competitions. There are many things that make CossFit fun, and exciting. I'd just be curious to know if the bad outweighs the good? I'm glad to know you would never allow this at your box... and an excellent read for sure. :)

Informative post.

Thanks Freddy - sounds like your gym is different and I'm just giving an outsider's perspective on Crossfit in general as I'm not one myself. I also heard that competitors at a Crossfit competition don't know exactly what movements they will be doing before the comp - is that true? Because if it is, that structure is a recipe for what you've witnessed, IMO. I train for Kettlebell Sport competitions, and like most sports the athlete devotes a significant amount of time to learning & perfecting technique first, then building speed (or gradually increasing weight). This leads to speed AND great form, and a lot can be learned both physically and mentally with a repetitive training regime, ultimately having a better understanding of your own body as well as the specifics of the movement. The idea of competing without specific training seems a little ADD to me.

Great post Freddy, you're right on...I was just talking to one of the athletes at the gym about this...like you said before. Music gets turned up, 3..2..1..Go and everything falls apart even during some WODS....always enjoy your ramblings Freddy...stay safe bro

Nice job, Lyn.

Good points all around, Freddy.

True Lyn, I saw that too. Unfortunately that is a judging and range of motion issue common at most competitions. You lean to except that as simply judges not knowing what they are looking at.

Brad told me that one of the competitors didn't go below parallel during overhead squats and the judge counted her reps (29 reps). Hmmm...

I, FOR ONE, AM A FAN OF THE ROMANIAN DEADLIFT/BACK EXTENSION HYBRID PERFORMED AT HIGH VOLUME AND INTENSITY...

REGARDLESS OF THE SPORT (CLASSIFICATION?), THE WAY ONE MOVES DURING TRAINING WILL ALWAYS MANIFEST ITSELF IN COMPETITION. COMPETITIONS ARE FUN TO WATCH BECAUSE YOU CAN GET A GREAT IDEA OF HOW OTHER GYMS TRAIN.

Good post, Freddy! I was able to go down to OW and do Cheryl's WOD Sunday. I didn't concentrate on time as much as I did thinking about technique and form. My time has improved because of working on my technique, you tend to use less energy if you do the movement correctly and reduce the risk of injury. I believe Lyn got 4th place overall in her division, thanks to her great form and support from her instructors and crew mates.

Jonnydee, You have obviously never been to One World. For time or for reps is simply a measuring tool for each individual, not a measuring stick for who is in first and who is in last. You will NEVER hear a trainer at our gym tell someone to go faster. I totally get what you are saying though. In my opinion, every gym has a different vibe. There are gyms that like to coach and there are gyms that like to cheer people on. I like to think that our gym likes to coach.

Liani, Can you blame the box? That's shakey ground. Maybe you can blame the programming, but in general, if someone shows up to do a competition, you are hard pressed to know how they are going to move if they come from another gym.

Well said! Not only does poor movement reflect poorly on the athletes' boxes, it also reflects poorly on the box hosting the competition; allowing such horrific movement to fly.

I agree, but I think it's hilarious that you have a workout posted below this well written article that is "for time". Doesn't "for time" mean go as fast as you can - same as a competition? One of the things I question about Crossfit in general.

Well said. I was judging a scaled athlete who just couldn't get the weight up. Friends/family/coaches kept yelling but I told him to take a breather. I could tell he really wanted to get that bar up so I felt the best thing I could do was try to coach him through it--but you know as well as I do that when you're up against a clock, you can't always teach or learn effectively.

Going back to that hectic atmosphere reminded me of my love/hate relationship with CF. But I definitely took pleasure in seeing old friends like yourself and "officially" meeting Chyna (she's a doll!). :)

Spot on, Freddy!

AWESOME ... I wholeheartedly agree with this blog. Some of the issues with tech in competitions can be managed somewhat through programming a sensible wod structure (honestly, is it a great idea to do the cleans AFTER 40 deadlifts?) but regardless people will crush and contort their bodies seeing as how it is the general "norm" to do so at comps.

One of my favorite "movers" is Lucas Parker (aka Teen Wolf)... consistent and precise movement under fatigue allows him to not only protect his body but also to perform very efficiently.

Thanks for posting this, will be sharing on Facebook!

Cam B

Great post. I try telling people that if they clean up their technique, not only will they be less at risk for injury, but their performance will improve. Poor technique leads to poor performance at the highest levels.

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