Origins of CrossFit and Personal Training
By Sean Wells
The origins of CrossFit especially for those who have only been exposed after 2013, is that CrossFit is group training. Not personal training.
The group training is resembling the stuff they saw on ESPN or one of the Netflix documentaries. What they don’t know is that CrossFit in its origin started with personal training. Then evolved into small group training. That’s right boys and girls, the training wasn’t focused on getting people fit to compete. The primary focus was on getting people healthy.
Greg Glassman, the founder of CrossFit, started with personal training –
You may read about the journey here. After a while he started grouping people together to keep everyone motivated, to utilize his time more efficiently, and to provide another dynamic in regards to training, another training stimulus; friendly competition.
The training(CrossFit) never was solely intended for group training.
The program that Greg Glassman came up with, that has arguably changed the way fitness is looked at, talked about today, started with personal training!
I recently read that close to 300,000 deaths in America are related to obesity in America. Read that again 300,000 deaths related to Obesity. Here is the article.
What does that have to do with how CrossFit started? Let me explain.
In order to help more people you put them in a class. In a class of 10 you can help 9 more people than you can in a one on one personal training session. However, that is a short sighted view of the changes that need to be made.
In order to have the best changes and to have long term benefits we need to change nutrition habits, we need to help people be physically active for the long term. To do these things you need to build trust and a relationship with all of the clients to ensure they will be successful LONG TERM. 30 days is nothing, 60 days is nothing, after 90 days we might have a habit but we need to stack years on of consistent and regular physical activity.
If a person starts with personal training first,
Then moves to group training for flexibility of schedule or to change it up etc, that is great. If the person wants to go do Yoga, conditioning focused, etc, awesome, but they still need their strength and should be doing strength training 2x a week. At Oregon CrossFit we offer Hybrid memberships: group training and Personal training, or group training and nutrition, because we realize to have long term success you need to have accountability.
I met with a personal training client the other day and we were talking about his personal training journey,
he started out training 2x a week with me and then moved into 3x a week, and now he trains 1x a week with me and I write programming for him to complete at home. (this journey has almost been three years in the making.) He says I hold him accountable and I said “I am the bumpers at the bowling alley”, keeping the ball rolling in the right direction.
A kid learns to bowl and you don’t let them fail by throwing gutter balls all day, you have them go to the lane with the bumpers, so that no matter how they toss the ball down the lane they get to strike a few pins and see some success.
Personal training is the exact same.
Use the coaching to be the bumpers. Build some success, build a consistent approach and follow through so you see consistent results.
The personal training client I am referring to is in his 50’s. He wants to be strong as he ages. To be able to do what he wants to do when he wants to do it physically. I have written about books that detail all ages and ability levels training:
The relationships are built with personal training first. Building real relationships and being the “bumpers” for those who are trying to improve their health and wellness. These relationships can’t be built in a group setting. The trust and relationship leads to results. These results will help make long term changes and start turning the tide in the obesity rates in America. We will also be moving towards the origin of how CrossFit started!
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