10 Considerations When Choosing a Crossfit Box/Coach

(A good write-up from CF Hustle…We hope that we meet all the requirements below! If not, please let us know!!)

You’ve found CrossFit, been hooked and are loving the mainsite workouts. That’s great. Now you need a coach. Don’t tell me you don’t. Everyone has a coach. From Mikko Salo to Lance Armstrong, athletes who take their sport seriously find the right person for them to encourage, judge and advise.

Here are tips to use when deciding which coach is right for you. (I’ll be using “he/him” if you don’t mind. It makes things a little easier, but feel free to throw “she” in there if you like.)

1. Does he CrossFit? You’d think this was a no-brainer, but some coaches don’t CrossFit or even work out. The coach that continues to better himself as an athlete is most likely looking for ways to better himself as a coach.

2. How does he program the workouts? Some CrossFit coaches, especially new ones, have the tendency to try new workouts because they look fun or are easy to coach. This will work to a degree for new CrossFitters, but if you want the most productive means of become faster, stronger, and healthier, it’s better to take a smarter approach to training.

3. Does he have a philosophy? This applies to programming and lifestyle. A good answer to look for is one that is objective. Sorry, you can’t measure abs. But you can measure the ability of an athlete to pull a barbell the same distance with load or move from one distance to another in a certain time. If he stresses the ability to chase numbers as the means to achieving greatness, you’ve found a good one. Hang onto him.

4. Does he promote a lifestyle change? You need to find a coach that works with you on all levels: nutrition, stress, family, rest and training. A good coach knows that your workouts are effected by all the aforementioned aspects of life … And he’ll work his ass off to change them for the better, for the sole purpose of increasing your fitness.

5. Does he give you a good vibe? I know I mentioned measurable and objective standards in number 3, but you’ve got to have a good vibe with your coach. A good coach will ask about as many questions as he will instruct. How are you feeling? Where do you think your wrists should be on a muscle-up? If you have a good back-and-forth with him, you know he’s going to listen when you have concerns. This is a relationship.

6. Ignore his certifications. Instead, ask when the last time he explored new ways of training, attended a seminar, or researched basic body mechanics. A good coach is constantly learning new, different and better ways to improve his athlete’s performance. An even better coach will do this objectively.

7. Does he gossip? This should just be common sense when choosing a friend. If he’s talking smack behind one of the other athlete’s backs, he’ll most likely do it to you.

8. How’s the class? Take an hour to watch him coach and ask the athletes what they think of the gym. Some gyms have an open setting while others are very structured. Because all CrossFit gyms have a different feel, make sure the environment is the type you’re looking for.

9. Does he hold a standard to everyone? This is crucial if you want to progress as an athlete. Make sure everyone’s squat gets below parallel. If he’s counting shallow squats or chin-under-bar pull-ups, proceed to the nearest exit.

10. How much does he charge? This isn’t always a big factor, but I’ve noticed when you buy cheap, you get cheap. More expensive doesn’t always mean better, but there may be something behind that higher price tag worth looking into.