There is probably not a day that goes by at the box where many of you probably don’t think to yourself: “When is Wingo going to stop harping on hollow and arches and my stinking shoulder position in the overhead movement?” Well I’m here to tell you that day isn’t going to come. And for good reason.
Our first and foremost concern as CrossFit coaches is to help you move better. In the end it is not about how much you squat, or deadlift, or your Grace time. Yes those things are of importance to us too, but they are secondary goals to teaching you to move well.
The greatest compliment any CrossFit affiliate owner or its coaches can receive is, when you are out of town and visit another box or go to a competition, for other quality coaches or athletes notice that you move well. Tight core—check. Active shoulders—check. Elbows high on that front squat with the bar over the ankles—check. This is what we are striving to achieve.
There are two big reasons. The first is safety. When you take the time to slowly, steadily, inch by inch improve the quality of your movement, the safer everything becomes for you—weightlifting, body weight movements, metcons—and most importantly just living life. The other big reason is efficiency, which directly translates to performance.
The better you move, the farther you will progress as an athlete. Want to snatch more? Learn proper hip function and how to explosively and fully open the hip. Want to rip off kipping pull-ups, toes to bar, bar muscle ups, and ring muscle ups? And walk on your hands and kip handstand push-ups like Coach Lindy? Climb a rope like Coach Sarah? Well the way you get there is focusing on the fundamentals.
I am challenging you. Every day you come to the box, make it a point to move better. I’m not talking about just moving better when the metcon starts. I’m talking about doing so the moment you start your warm-up rowing or running and doing pass throughs, overhead squats with the PVC pipe, lunging, and short sets of push-ups and pull-ups. Work on your form, strive for excellence with your form, from the first moment you walk into the box to the moment you leave.
Seek out your coaches and ask for their help. If you don’t get better in some way, each day, then together we have failed for that day—we meaning all of us as your coaches and you as an athlete. Take a step forward every day. You can do so even when you have those “off” days where you are fatigued and just don’t have that extra rep in you or miss out on your previous squat PR due to stress, a lack of sleep, workout fatigue, or whatever it may be that holds you back. You can still progress that day in efforts to move better.
Which brings me to my final point. Your efforts to move better every day at the box, to strive for excellence in the quality of movement, are not meant to be limited to athletic performance. Another goal is to transfer your efforts to help you strive for excellence in life, whatever it is that you do that is of importance to you—whether that is being a better mom or dad or employee or boss or preacher or car salesman.
So strive for excellence very single day. Make it count. I will be watching you (especially your hollows and arches and shoulder position!) and pushing you and cheering for you.