Sunday, September 21, 2008

Rest Day - 21SEP

OK, so I made sure to exercise my mind on today's rest day by listening to the debut of CrossFit Radio. During the podcast, they play some sound bites from another podcast called The Strength Coach Podcast, namely Episode 19.5.

Here is my lengthy post in that I left on the comments page for today.

WOW, just finished listening to the CFR debut followed immediately by the mentioned Strength Coach Podcast (which can be found on iTunes - Episode 19.5). It's absolutely STUNNING how misinformed these gentlemen are. They are obviously knowledgeable in the arena of fitness, but they are woefully lacking in solid data regarding their arguments against CrossFit. Some examples:

Kipping as cheating. Well, I'm not even going to go into this. If people are REALLY still making this argument and don't understand that a kipping pull-up is a different exercise that has different objectives than a dead hang pull-up, then they have proven my point about not doing their research before speaking.

Rhabdo: This is one of the most common arguments that I see. People state that the CrossFit community is filled with false bravado regarding Rhabdomyolosis. Judging by the fact that there are several publicly available CFJ articles which state the dangers of Rhadbo and that our job as trainers is to properly indoctrinate our clients to this potentially fatal injury, I'm not sure where they are getting their data. A t-shirt?! Come on! So the ENTIRE CrossFit community laughs in the face of Rhabdo and is leading people to face certain death because one guy decided to make a shirt. Obviously, these guys have never spoken with a CrossFit trainer regarding Rhabdo.

Secondly, their assertion about how "some guys" they've witnessed at training camps were putting out more wattage than we do in our WODs don't get rhabdo because they're technically sound. I challenge Mr. Boyle to present ONE CASE where a veteran CrossFitter has come down with Rhabdo. It hasn't happened, therefore his assertion isn't sound because he's comparing the output/technique of a novice CrossFitter to that of a seasoned athlete (I'm postulating that he/she is seasoned because they're at a training camp and referencing power output). Which leads me to my next point.

They mention that there isn't an emphasis on progression; that CrossFit advocates running through exercises without a care for technique. They even go so far as to say that we don't emphasize the deadlift before focusing on the clean. There are numerous references that show that it is understood that having a solid deadlift is a prerequisite to undertaking a barbell clean.

Speaking of the Olympic lifts, Coach Boyle states that the "fundamental rule of Olympic weightlifting" is "don't do more than six reps." He additionally states that "any good Olympic lifting coach" will tell you that any more than that and you "cannot not have the level of technical mastery that you need in the Olympic lifts." The coaches that he's referencing are speaking about using the O-lifts to achieve peak numbers on the lifts. Is he saying that an athlete that can POWER clean 200+ lbs, doesn't have the technical ability or requisite strength and stability to safely clean and jerk 135-lbs?

They clearly don't have all the data regarding the lawsuit placed against the FORMER (they neglected to mention that part) affiliate. They speculate about what the workout was, even though that information has been put into the public domain. I would like to hear Coach's Boyle's assessment as to how an ALL-NAVY WRESTLER could become floored by a workout PROVEN to be completed by children under the age of 10 with no ill effects. Maybe, and this is just one crazy guy talking, there were other factors involved. There are many risk factors associated with Rhabdo: dehydration, other pre- or post-workouts, alcohol intake, etc... Without knowing the whole story, it's pretty difficult to look at this case and make the judgment that a CrossFit workout is to blame.

I think it's a shame that these men are so blind to what our community is about that they feel the need to throw around utterly stupid and false quotes. For example, at 27:30, "Saying things like, 'If falling off the rings and breaking your neck bothers you, then we don't want you around the ranks of CrossFitters.'" I'd LOVE to see where Greg Glassman said this!

Did anyone else find it interesting that one of the guys said it was hard to teach someone to squat? At my Level 1 certification, I witnessed 55 people learn how to squat properly in oh, 5 minutes. Did we all need work afterwards? Absolutely, but in the amount of time it takes to run through a warm-up, we were given the tools to improve our squats on our own - working towards the virtuosity of movement that every CrossFitter strives for.

Hell, Michael Boyle himself didn't even know if CrossFit was Incorporated! Come on! Don't you think that as a trainer looking to ATTACK a competitor's (make no mistake, there is definitely major business competition here! A free site vs. a site that required $10 a month) method's and principals, that he should AT LEAST gather some background information?

Lastly, and most comically, at 45:27 on the podcast, they actually said that CrossFitters are "like a bunch of ADD kids" that "don't want to gain mastery of anything" that AREN'T GETTING FIT. Neil, you'd BETTER challenge Michael Boyle to step up and bring some of his top athletes to compete against our firebreathers. I think that's the only way that these guys will at least garner a semblance of respect for the capability of the CrossFit system. Well, they still probably won't since Greg and Lauren don't charge for this stuff, so obviously it has to be false. :rolleyes

I would apologize for the length of this post, but I'm not really sorry about it in this instance. I hope everyone has a great rest day! :-)

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