Hi Everyone! Life has been crazy lately and so much has been going on. This past week I was lucky enough to be a part of two different and very special experiences starting with my CrossFit Kids Certification at CrossFit Verve in Denver, CO.
If you didn't already know, Verve is co-owned by none other than the fantastic Matt and Cherie Chan. Mr. Chan just placed #1 in the South West Regionals and is going on to the games along with a huge list of amazing athletes from Verve.
So here is the breakdown:
We focus on the 9 basic exercises that all Crossfit is created around. CrossFit Kids adds thruster as number ten so as to teach it as its own lift...something kids have trouble coordinating without specific instruction.
We played basic, low organization gym games I have used for years and twisted them to meet the needs and abilities of diverse student age and ability ranges. For example, we played dodgeball in different body positions like crab walks and knee level throwing. You are never out but gain exercises with each tag by the ball. By varying the stances and expectations across ability levels, we level the playing field so 7 year olds can play the game competitively with 12 years olds. I wish I had pictures of this super fun activity. It was over way before we lost interest. FUN!
We spent a good bit of time in break out sessions practicing cues and standards of coaching. We broke down skills into successful variations. I plan on using these keys with my adult athletes too.
I'm never quite sure what to think of instructors as an adult student. Clearly we are the same age and in the same field of expertise. Then there is the student-teacher relation that I have always viewed as a wall much like the military views officers and soldiers. They just don't mix much or well. It never fails, there is always one or two people in the crowd that picks the instructors brain for minute details about some random related subject just to monopolize there attention. This makes me both CRAZY and a little jealous. I want to know our instructor and for them to know me too! I guess the monopolizer just wants some credibility bestowed by authority? What do you think? I spent much of the afternoon session spitting imaginary tissue wads at the monopolizer.
During lunch on both days many people went out for the hour. I feel this is a huge mistake at a Crossfit Cert. Not only do the instructors stick around and work out at lunch but THIS is the time they will talk to you like a real person! Mike Burgener and I had wonderful lunches together during my Oly certification simply because he loves to know people and I was the only one who stuck around. I shoved some Questbar and apple in my mouth and got my lifting done early in lunch so I could watch the action around me. I will admit, I am no better than the rest of the lunch crowd. I purposely planned my power cleans and jerk practice for the workout to complement my strength cycle (which was deload week...no way could I just lift deload in VERVE!) I love making people a little scared with my best moves.
All around me there were people strutting best moves too. And watchers...lots of watchers. The butterfly pullup girl was pretty good and her friend double under queen strutted 100 skips before a snag. Hotdog gymnast guy showed his bar muscle ups and rower dude pulled for a long time. It was a circus people. A circus.
It was pretty paleo and no peanuts were found in the stands.
As for the rest of the cert, it was so enjoyable. I got some great resources and programming ideas for our developing teen program and have been planning the summer kids wods everyday since.
I wish I could say I made those people connections and I walked away with some CF community spirit but I didn't. Maybe it was the group dynamic but I was left wanting more warm fuzzies than I got. Good thing that was not the goal of the certification.
I know the kids in our community are going to be inspired and motivated by what we do and learn from our great mentors at CrossFit. I totally walked away with a head full of usable information and creative juices flowing into my wod planner. If you are considering taking this course, do it. Not for potential money sources in your gym or a new best buddy. This course is for our little people, and changing the old school methods that clearly never worked into experiences kids will hold onto throughout there lives.