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How To Choose The Right CrossFit Box

How To Choose The Right CrossFit Box

by Jonathan Ruiz

CrossFit has become one of the hottest trends in fitness. The unique training regimen introduces a competitive tribal training experience focused on developing functional fitness. CrossFit combines elements from several types of exercises and sports, like weightlifting, gymnastics, HIIT (high intensity interval training), rowing, running, and more.  

CrossFit will have you ultra-fit and push your body beyond what you thought was possible. Before jumping right into it, the first thing you want to do to ensure safety and efficiency is choose the right CrossFit “box” (a.k.a. CrossFit gym). 

Not sure where to start?  

There are certain things that you want to look for when finding the right CrossFit box for your needs, such as trainers, equipment, and the members. Some of these things are going to be difficult to determine by just looking up different local boxes online, but that is a good starting point. Look for a box that has a lot of good reviews in your area. But don’t discount the negative reviews, you’ll want to get a full picture of what people think of the box.  

Test It Out 

After looking up the boxes online, you’ll want to take a box for a test run before deciding which is best for you. I suggest taking a few classes at a couple different boxes before making a decision. Trust me. It’ll be well worth it and more beneficial for your wellbeing in the long run. 

Evaluate The Trainers 

Finding the right trainers or coaches is absolutely imperative when CrossFit training. If you’ve heard about CrossFit, then you’ve likely heard about how people discourage it due to injuries caused by horrible form. However, horrible form is no reason to not do CrossFit. Rather, it’s a very important reason to find a box with good coaches who prioritize proper form. 

I know what you’re thinking. How do you know if a coach is good when you’re new and know very little about CrossFit? One thing to look out for is a coach who has you exercise with more weight than you’re ready to handle. Another red flag is if a coach has you do an exercise that’s too advanced for you right out the gate. Last but not least, do they give you sufficient time and instructional attention to ensure you’re doing the movements correctly?  

At the end of the day, trust your instinct. Keep in mind that starting a CrossFit routine is like doing anything else for the first time. Getting started can be an unfamiliar, challenging and sometimes uncomfortable experience. That’s to be expected.  

That said, a good coach will give you the support you need to rise above your insecurities; helping you build confidence as you work through the learning curve. If a coach doesn’t help you understand what you should be doing or how to do it, then you may need to find another box. Poor coaching can cause you to get hurt. 

Remember, you’ve got to crawl before you can walk, so the coaches at your box should have patience and teach you at your pace to prevent injury. They also must break down and explain the proper form of movements; watching you to make sure that you’re doing it right. Furthermore, you want to look for a group of coaches that pay attention to everybody equally so everyone will know when they’re doing something incorrect. 

Assess The Equipment 

Equipment is another factor that you should look at when choosing a box. Now, you don’t have to have the latest models and all brand new equipment at a box. But it’s nice being part of a gym that has enough equipment for everybody and a variety of equipment. A wide variety of equipment, such as climbing ropes, rowing machines, plenty of barbells, and bumper plates, as well as kettle bells, medicine balls, rings, and pullup bars is best. Having all of these at your disposal is great because you know you’ll have tons of things to do to mix it up, without ever getting bored. 

Who Are The Members 

Finally, the members are a great factor when choosing the right box. You’re going have to get out your comfort zone and mix it up with the fellow CrossFitters. You’ll want to get a feel for others’ personalities, camaraderie, and enthusiasm at the box. Remember, if you’re around a group of great people that are supporting you to finish a WOD (workout of the day) or hit a new PR (personal record), then you’re going to push yourself to get better… and you WILL get better with the right support and encouragement.  

Once you have chosen the right box for you, get ready for an experience that will challenge you to increase your overall fitness level with just the right amount of competition and an atmosphere that doesn’t allow for boredom. I’ll take you through everything you need to know about CrossFit in my upcoming posts, so stay tuned.