At The Box: What Makes a Great CrossFit Box? (Part 2)

Updated September 1, 2023

We want to pick up right where we left off from last week’s discussion on what makes for a great CrossFit Box. You’ll remember that we discussed the 3 C’s: Coaches, Community, and Core.

Let’s break that down even further this week by taking a closer look at our 1st C:

The Coach.

The CrossFit Coach plays a vital role in a successful Box. Even if a Box has a large warehouse space with new Rogue equipment and state-of-the-art screens, it cannot thrive without a coach. The coach acts as the glue that holds the Box together. So, what makes a great coach? Let’s break it down into three categories: functional, inspirational, and transitional.

1.) Functional:
Functional training consists of movements that make everyday tasks easier, such as picking up kids, groceries, or even rocks in the backyard. Running, jumping, and pulling ourselves up are also part of functional training. Stronger and more efficient performance of compound functional movements can improve our quality of life regardless of age or profession.

CrossFit coaches prioritize functional movement. This means focusing on real-world movements like squats, deadlifts, and presses, which are used in our daily lives. Great coaches are constantly learning about functional movements and the most efficient ways to perform them. Boxes that aim for excellence support their coaches by encouraging their growth through lifting, gymnastics, and certification training.

2.) Inspirational:
A great CrossFit coach is an inspiration. During challenging WODs, when we feel like giving up, a coach acts as our counselor, guide, friend, and cheerleader. As our counselor, they replace self-doubt with confidence and belief in our abilities. As our guide, they help us with efficient lifts and movements to complete the WOD, ensuring we stay on track. As our friend, they will be honest and prioritize our safety, even if it means advising us to take a rest day. They are also our cheerleaders, providing words of encouragement or motivation when we need it most. A good coach is engaged with their class, instructing, correcting, and actively inspiring their members.

3.) Transitional:
Great coaches focus on the transitional aspect of coaching. They guide their members from being mere “exercisers” to athletes. Most people entering a Box are new to CrossFit, coming from gyms or individual workouts. A great coach takes them under their wing, training and inspiring them, and facilitating their transition. They instill strength and belief, replacing self-doubt with confidence. These coaches understand that the transitions go beyond the physical aspect. They show how CrossFit applies to all aspects of life, teaching values like intensity, passion, drive, focus, and determination, which can be applied daily.

In summary, a great CrossFit coach excels in functional movement, inspires their members, and guides them through transitional stages. They take their members from exercising to becoming athletes and show how CrossFit applies to real-life situations.

Well, there are just a few thoughts on great coaching. Remember, coaches are the glue that hold the Box together. Find them, they’re out there. Trust me. I know.

Next week we’ll continue our exploration of the what makes a great CrossFit Box by looking at the Box community.

This article is Part 2 of our “What Makes a Great CrossFit Box?” series:

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