In the span of nine days, I attended the CrossFit Kids Course, visited eleven colleges (for my day job), and attended the CrossFit Football Course. Needless to say, it was an exhausting, yet worthwhile week.
I started following CFF about two years ago and saw great strength gains. I would follow it in waves because it doesn’t include as much gymnastics and full oly lifting since it is designed for power athletes (football, soccer, really any sport). Because I had been following it for awhile, I was excited for creator John Welbourn and crew to come in and preach their ways. For those who don’t know, Welbourn was a professional NFL offensive tackle and guard for 10 years with the Philadelphia Eagles and Kansas City Chiefs. He also competed in the 2008 CrossFit Games. Yeah, he knows his stuff.
The course was very hands on which most people appreciate in these courses. We went over the back squat, deadlift, floor press, power clean, and jerk. During these movements, we would coach each other while the trainers walked around to critique. Luke and Ben led us in a lot of mobility work which was unexpected, but I think left me sore more than the workouts! (we did one each day) One topic that doesn’t often come up in CrossFit world is “change of direction.” In most sports, athletes are changing direction all the time. We spent some time going over sprint mechanics and change of direction drills which was both interesting and useful.
Although we had sessions on programming and nutrition, I think many attendees had a lot of questions pertaining to both topics. Unlike the CF Kids Course where most attendees were CrossFit coaches, there were a good amount of high school sport coaches here that had not heard of paleo or AMRAPs. Taking some time from the mobility work and moving it to more FAQs during programming and nutrition would have been useful.
Overall, I think the biggest benefit of CFF is actually DOING it. Admittedly, a lot of the cert information can be found on CFF and John’s blog Talk To Me Johnnie (TTMJ). But if you’re looking to get specific questions answered or get warmup/mobility drill ideas, then the course would be useful for you.
Thanks to John, Ben, Luke, and interns Chris and Cali for sharing their expertise and inspiring us to get strong!