Holding a Standard
We talk relatively often in class about standards. Movement standards specifically and what we are looking for with each rep or movement.
The question is why do we emphasize these so much?
Firstly let me say, as coaches we are not here to no rep. We are here to improve performance, and just yelling “no rep” does not accomplish that.
We use standards to make sure everyone is doing the same workout. We use standards for the same reason when you go out and eat the portion size is always a standard so we don’t end up with half the portion size as the person next to you.
We also use standards because it is the full expression of the movement. If we don’t open our hips at the top of a box jump we did not complete full range of motion, which is optimal, and our score will reflect that. If our wall ball doesn’t touch the wall we failed to meet the standard and we are not improving accuracy (one of the 10 components of fitness).
Let us be clear here. When we fatigue we all flirt with that standards line. But, that is also the most important time to focus on solid technique and develop efficiency.
However, our score will also be quicker if we do not express a full range of motion or hold to a standard. And that is wrong. For multiple reasons:
We are getting an inflated (or technically deflated) score based on unsuccessful movement patterns. Our score is a reflection of our fitness, and by not holding a standard we are not giving ourself an accurate reflection of our fitness.
Our score is a reflection of ourselves and the overall community. If I finish faster than you but did not do all the work or hold myself to a standard then my score is an unfair reflection and it also diminishes your score, and unrightfully so.
We use standards because it is the right thing to do. They will also make us better. When we were in college or high school we had standards set. They were called grades. And if we didn’t make the grades then we failed. Simple. We should treat standards in CrossFit exactly the same. If and when we fail we should repeat the movement in order to complete a full range of motion and to improve.
So when we talk about standards, it is not to be nit-picky. It is because we want the best for you and our community.
We need to hold each other to the highest of standards and be a community of skilled movers who hold each other accountable. Standards express full movement patterns and optimize fitness