I am a CrossFit competitor. I love participating in CrossFit competition. As an athlete I love the CrossFit Games and aspire to make my way there one day as a masters competitor. But as a gym owner, I think that the CrossFit Games is the worst thing to happen to CrossFit.
The CrossFit Games were initially just a casual community get-together bringing together some of the stand-out CrossFitters from various places in the world for some BBQ and a friendly competition. The Games then grew into a big middle finger to all the fitness professionals who derided CrossFit arguing that CrossFit training might be good for regular folks but it was insufficient for producing elite level fitness results. Wrong. The CrossFit Games turned into a proving ground and a showcase for what is possible when elite athletes employ CrossFit’s unparalleled training methodology. No one argues CrossFit doesn’t work anyone.
Instead, people now think that the CrossFit training methodology originally developed for average folks like you and me is something accessible only to elite athletes. Even as the Games grew in popularity, they drove people away from ever trying CrossFit training themselves. Just like you don’t need to be an NBA star to shoot hoops at your local rec centre, you do not to be a fitness phenom to do CrossFit.
The needs of your grandparents and an Olympian athlete vary by intensity, not kind. CrossFit is for everyone who needs to be able to stand up off a toilet, pick up a bag of groceries or navigate a flight of stairs. And CrossFit is the most effective methodology for producing functional competence that translates to daily life.
Everything we do is scalable to all levels. If the videos included in this post don’t show a progression that you think you could realistically perform, don’t worry, we at Empower have many more ways to adapt these movements. With a membership ranging from 9 to 87 years old and the majority of us 45+ years of age, scaling workouts to meet your specific movement limitations is what the coaches at Empower are expert at.
Just as you do not need to know how to play guitar in order to take guitar lessons, you do not need to be fit to do CrossFit. It’s our job to get you fit. No matter where you are starting from.
The CrossFit Games athletes are impressive. We admire them. But they are professional athletes. We differ from them the way a back yard game of catch differs from the training of a Major League pitcher. You don’t need to be a pro to reap the benefits of CrossFit. The CrossFit Games are an exciting sideshow but they distract from what CrossFit is actually about and they do not reflect how we actually train day-to-day.