Choosing a CF Gym
CrossFit’s mission is “to fuel a revolution in fitness based on the pursuit of function.”
“We believe that where you train is less important than how you train, and whom you train with matters more than what gear you have. We know this can be done anywhere. We’ve proven that the back yard to the garage to the warehouse is as good an environment as any for forging elite fitness.” – CrossFit HQ
CrossFit is booming. Some people think it is the newest fitness craze, but we don’t and either do the thousands of other CrossFit gyms around the world. With the increase in popularity comes more and more CrossFit gyms popping up all over the place. Where one town may have only had one gym in the area, now there can be a couple within miles of each other. With all these options how does someone decide what gym to belong to? We have put together a little “how to” guide to help you along the way.
Do Your Research
Before you decide to join a CrossFit gym, or “box,” you need to make certain that box is a “true” CrossFit affiliate, ensuring the trainers have completed the necessary levels of certification. This is true for an adult CrossFit program AND a CrossFit Kids program. CrossFit gyms and trainers need to go through specific training and pay to use the CrossFit name, some “bootcamp” style gyms are using masking their CrossFit gyms with different terms to keep from doing this. You can find the affiliate finder for adult programs here. You want the people teaching CrossFit movements to be endorsed by CrossFit and have gone through the necessary training and certification. Once, you have established that a gym is an affiliate, make sure ALL their coaches have their training certification. While a gym needs to have a certified instructor to be an affiliate, that doesn’t mean you will be coached by the person with the training.
Take a Trip
Once you have narrowed down the CrossFit boxes you want to try, take the time to visit. Talk with the trainers, talk with the members. Spend time observing a morning class and an afternoon class if you like. By just being in the space you’ll learn a lot about class structure and trainers’ personalities. If the trainer is talking on his cell phone or training himself while class is going on, walk away. One member told us that a friend that had been doing CrossFit told her to walk in and if it “feels like home”, than that is the place for you.
Some questions to ask:
- How are your classes structured? Are they instructor led or open gym style? Will I be on my own during the WOD?
- Will I need to partner up every workout due to lack of equipment and/or space?
- Will I have to wait in line to do my WOD?
- What sort of community events and activities does the gym/box do?
- Will I be given scaling options for workouts?
The Same but Different
Although the fundamentals of CrossFit are the same wherever one goes, it’s safe to say no two boxes look the same. What matters most is that you feel comfortable with the coaches and in the space. Anyone can write a workout down on a board and say go… but pay attention to how people teach and communicate things, how they organize classes, etc. Most boxes don’t have a wall of mirrors (if any at all); there may be a stationary bike or some rowers, but no machines. Decide for yourself if it’s the environment for you. Trust your gut!
It’s about the People!
At most big box gyms there is no need or desire to get to know the people next to you on the elliptical trainer or Stairmaster. In any case, they’re probably too busy watching TV or reading US magazine. CrossFit, on the other hand, is one hundred percent all about the people you “throw down with” every day. As CrossFit increasingly becomes a bigger part of your life, so, too, will your fellow CrossFitters. You don’t have to like everyone, but don’t be surprised if it turns out you do.
Come in and check us out. If we are a good fit, you will know once you walk in the door. Contact us today!