CrossFit – The coaches that care

A new sport hot in the Fort McMurray fitness scene

By TERRI WINDOVER, Connect Contributor

Competitors and coaches gather together for the first annual Winter Wod at CrossFit Crude on January 30. Photo by TERRI WINDOVER, Connect Contributor

Competitors and coaches gather together for the first annual Winter Wod at CrossFit Crude on January 30. Photo by TERRI WINDOVER, Connect Contributor

CrossFit Crude is a local CrossFit affiliated box (gym) located in the front of Father Mercredi high school. An exciting addition to the local fitness scene, it has started to make a name for itself in a town populated by large gyms and rec centers. With smaller gyms and home-based training centers starting to become a trend – both nationally and locally, you’re seeing more people look to these types of places for their personal touch and family feel.

Over the years, I have watched many people walk into big impersonal gyms unsure of what to do and leave in frustration three months later, still unsure. Or they get injured due to a lack of knowledge regarding how to lift safely.

John Fletcher is a local teacher and Olympic lifting coach with a passion for both teaching and perfection. A great combination in this or any other sport, he has surrounded himself with an excellent array of trainers and coaches who share his ideals and drive to teach.

The sport of CrossFit was founded in 2000 by Greg Glassman, a former gymnast. It started as a single gym in Santa Cruz, California and 15 years later there are over 13,000 locations all across the globe. Of course with such explosive growth comes major growing pains.

Owners John Fletcher, Jason Abel and Tom Keca are intent on changing that and have a vision that is to be admired. They implemented the use of yellow and red penalty cards for improper form for the athletes competing in WODS of Winter 2016 on January 30. Fletcher hopes to take this further in the sport and put the focus back on good technique.

Contrary to Glassman’s vision of form over speed and love of perfection, the influx of under qualified and non-certified “coaches” threatened to derail the reputation of the sport. Some dishonest trainers were opening small gyms or training out of home gyms using titles like X-fit. As CrossFit is an affiliate organization you must be approved and certified by them to use the proper name. Unfortunately, most of the average population is unaware of that and the result was injuries and a feeling of unease about the sport.

Owners John Fletcher, Jason Abel and Tom Keca are intent on changing that and have a vision that is to be admired. They implemented the use of yellow and red penalty cards for improper form for the athletes competing in WODS of Winter 2016 on January 30. Fletcher hopes to take this further in the sport and put the focus back on good technique.

I had the pleasure of being the technique judge and am proud to say I only had to lay one warning card for the entire intense and exhilarating competition.

The athletes were so diverse and it was amazing to see how close they were and how they rallied each other during the event, even their closest challengers.

You simply don’t see that level of true camaraderie in most gyms.

CrossFit Crude is open to all levels so don’t be scared to give them a try. You might end up making friends, as well as muscles.

There is exciting news for this clubs future. They recently sealed the deal on a new location in a warehouse directly beside Town Hall.

CrossFit Crude and Total Athlete Development (TAD) will be co-sharing 6000+ square feet with Crude on one side, TAD on the other. Large washrooms with showers and changing area will be in facility. They are looking to be fully operational by mid-March.

The CrossFit side will have a new 44 feet rig with 10 squat stands, 15+ pull-up stations and 15 wall ball targets. They will have climbing ropes, high and low rings for gymnastics, a 12ft wide x 70ft turfed area for various activities, such as weight sleds, warm-ups, running, etc. and the list goes on. Everything you would see at a fully functioning CrossFit Box, and more.

They will continue to offer CrossFit, Olympic weightlifting, gymnastics classes, HIIT classes, and are looking to offer recovery (yoga) classes as well.

For newbies to CrossFit, they will need to take the on-ramp course. There will be courses every weekend (Saturday and Sunday), until further notice.

For more information and to reserve a spot, contact the professionals at 780-231-6259 or by email crossfitcrude@gmail.com and visit www.crossfitcrude.com.

– Connect Weekly –