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Coaches Couch: Injury Management

Coaches Couch: Injury Management

I have been in two minds about getting involved in this debate that is taking centre stage over the fitness world. Some of the headlines are media and fitness bloggers way of getting reads and followers and some are very real and legitimate concerns. Where does this leave us in our pursuit of CrossFit Excellence in Craighall as an affiliate and what is my position on this one?

The reality is that injuries are a very real possibility and we cannot shy away from that. We are dealing with people at CrossFit Ex Animo looking for our expertise and guidance and many of whom come from little to no athletic background and some who have some previous background but have been sedentary and then a few who are athletes who will push themselves very hard from day one. So who are most likely to get injured..the answer is all of them and all of them for different reasons.

Furthermore there have been some dire injuries in a sport that we love through freak accident and athlete “going for it” or poor competition programming the result was a seriously bad one from an experienced veteran athlete.

Here is the reality check though, every sport has injuries from the touch rugby field to the roads of the runner and sadly some terrible accidents involving cyclists and triathletes as well as mountain bikers losing their lives in the pursuit of their sports. My challenge to those pointing at CrossFit as the cause of injury is to ask anyone they know who is an athlete if they have never had an injury? I have many triathlete friends who run through tears and sprains and nerve damage in pursuit of events.

Iron Man events have had serious injury during training and during their actual events. They are everywhere. What is highlighting our plight as CrossFitters is the speed at which we are growing and the complexity of some of our movements.

That being said it does not make us exempt from trying to do things correctly and safely while still pushing the boundaries.

As coaches all we can do is guide and educate, there is a point where we leave you to make the decisions in the workouts that you need to make regarding how you are going to attempt a movement, at what intensity you push and or what weight you decide to work with. While you work, if we see you moving within the bounds of danger be sure we will stop you and correct you and if we know you to be operating below your capability we will push you a little harder.

What we expect from our athletes is feedback and honesty without ego, we cannot eliminate injury but we can work to prevent it but you have to provide the feedback. We program to develop your capability and conditioning in a safe yet challenging way. Mechanics first.

The CrossFit Ex Animo code of conduct says leave your ego at the door. In a workout slow is often fast, a missed rep or “No Rep” takes you longer so do it right the first time. Another thought to consider, if you get injured during a WOD your time is actually the WOD time plus the six weeks recovery time making you the slowest on that WOD.

Some workouts are tougher than others and some are skill based so you might walk away thinking did I event train today, don’t get confused sweating and breathing hard is not always training. CrossFit develops everything and will highlight a lot of weakness and require some skill development as boring as that might be.

The coaches are going to push you very hard and at sometimes you are going to run very close to the edge of your ability, the edge is a scary place to be so make sure you keep a log book so you know where that is. Push yourself, you are capable, but be intelligent in the decisions you make. If we give you a 70% of 1 rep max its for a reason, doing the WOD at 90% doesn’t make you stronger it makes you dumber. Develop strength through consistency and frequency not by pushing at 100% of 1 rep max every work out.

Train hard, think smart, always with passion and discipline and as always from the heart.

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