SCHEDULE AND POLICY OVERHAUL

SCHEDULE AND POLICY OVERHAUL
Behold! Out of the chaos, we bring order. Our mission is to bring you the single best fitness experience possible. Unfortunately, due to the overwhelming sizes of our classes lately, we are finding it difficult to give you the attention that you deserve. So to better serve our existing athletes as well as newcomers, we are implementing the following changes effective immediately. Please read this carefully and post questions to the comments.
A firm grasp of the fundamentals is essential for the safety and effectiveness of the CrossFit programming. To that end we need to spend more time with new athletes and get them up to speed and give them a solid grounding in the fundamentals. While some people thrive and even excel by being thrown right into the mix, many more people find it too overwhelming. Therefore, if you are interested in trying CrossFit NYC we will offer FREE beginners only classes (BEGINNER CLASSES).
BEGINNER CLASSES. These classes are FREE to first-timers, the curious, athletes that wish to brush up on the basics and athletes that are in the Elements Workshop or taking Elements Privates (see below). No experience required. These classes will cover some of the basics of the CrossFit exercises and the workouts will be scaled down yet potent enough to give you a taste of the CrossFit experience. Newcomers and beginners are no longer allowed to drop into any class. BEGINNER CLASSES will be held Wednesday nights at 6pm and Saturday mornings at 10am.
If you decide to join CrossFit NYC, you will be required to complete the Elements Program. You can complete the Elements Program by taking the workshop or private lessons.
ELEMENTS WORKSHOP. The Elements Workshop is designed to take people through the basics of the CrossFit exercises and prepare athletes for moving into group classes with a firm grasp of the movements and intelligent substitutions for exercises that suit their specific needs. The Elements Workshops will meet twice per week. Workshops will commence at the beginning of the month and run for 4 weeks. That’s a total of 8 sessions. Enrollment will be limited to 6 people in the workshop to insure more individual attention for each athlete. The cost of the Elements Workshop will be $150 for 4 weeks. No discounts. No exceptions. Group A will meet Mondays and Fridays at 6pm. Group B will meet Tuesdays and Thursdays at 6pm. Advanced registration and payment is required. Athletes must demonstrate satisfactory knowledge of the material covered before being allowed to attend Workout Of The Day (WOD) classes.
ELEMENTS PRIVATES. For those that need or want more individualized attention we offer a one-on-one version of the Elements Workshop. Eight private sessions that will cover the same material. The cost is $600 for 8 sessions which must be completed in 6 weeks. No exceptions. No extensions. For athletes that do not intend to join the WOD classes or have special needs or limitations, the privates can be customized to your needs. This rate is only offered for your first eight privates. After your Elements Privates, your rate will revert to the standard rate set by your instructor. To book privates contact: Keith, Court or Allison.
Just because you are in the WOD classes now, does not mean you are safe. In fact, if you show up to a WOD class, the onus is on you to demonstrate a firm understanding of the movements and skills needed to perform the WOD. Simply getting a good score is not enough. We expect (WE DEMAND) good form as well. We are here to coach you and help you meet your athletic goals and sometimes that means forcing you to take a step back and review the basics.
We believe that these new policies will be a benefit to all the athletes here at CrossFit NYC. The newcomers will get more attention and be brought up to speed at a safe pace and the veterans will be forced to keep their form good lest they be sent back for remedial help. Additionally, classes will hopefully be a more manageable size.
Please note the schedule changes below:
WOD Classes: Monday through Friday 7am, 12:30pm, 7pm; Saturday 11am, Sunday 10:30am.
Elements Workshop A: Monday and Friday 6pm beginning August 6.
Elements Workshop B: Tuesday and Thursday 6pm beginning August 7.
Beginner Classes: Wednesday 6pm and Saturday 10 am. Beginners Only!
Kettlebell, Olympic Lifting, and Fight Club are only for those athletes that have completed the Elements Program and are fully paid members of CrossFit NYC. No drop-ins.
Until August 6th, the Mon, Tues, Thurs and Fri 6pm classes will remain WOD classes.

Please feel free to post questions and comments. I am sure with your help this will go smoothly. Thank you.

  • chad c

    thanks keith…

  • http://rockstartzo.livejournal.com Tereza

    plees don’t put me in the class for babies!

  • Justin

    Screw it… After today, Im going into the baby class. Im beat and still sweatin’ like a slave.

  • Moon

    Thanks for dropping the whole “Those who get sent back to the Elements Workshop will have one letter from the word ‘LOSER’ tattooed on their forehead. Each time. First time it’s an ‘L’, second, a ‘O’, ecetera…” idea that was going around for awhile there.

  • Dan O

    All the intro classes are at 6:00 in this proposal. I would suggest you consider at least a mix of 6:00 and 7:00 intro classes and 6:00 and 7:00 WOD classes. Three reasons: 1) It’s nice to get the workout in at 6:00. 2) Beginner classes starting at 7:00 will frequently get to see the tail end of the WOD class, and, in theory, allow them to see some excellent examples of good form. 3) The variety of times makes it more likely that all people can find times that work for them in the slot they need to attend.
    My $0.02

  • sarena

    Along the lines of what Dan is suggesting, I wonder if there should be any options for the intro classes and/or workshops during daytime hours. I am thinking parents that see 6 or 7 as time to be home with their children!
    my $0.02

  • michelle

    i need the cliff notes!

  • Justin

    I do agree with Dan as it would be nice to have some variation in the times… I don’t mind coming to the 7 o’clock class if I could come to the 6 pm class as well at times. I definitely agree with the changes for the most part, just a little more tweaking to take into consideration some minor schedule changes if possible. I would love to come to the AM and lunch classes but my work schedule just doesn’t allow for it, so a little more variety at night would be great. Again, just my $.02 as well.

  • julie

    is fridays workout posted?

  • A2

    Julie- the WOD is up on the main site. It’s Bench Press 1-1-1-1-1-1-1 reps
    Do we do bench presses or is something else going down in the Box tomorrow?

  • http://www.crossfitnyc.org Tyler Durden

    Friday 070713
    Bench Press 1-1-1-1-1-1-1 reps
    Post loads to comments.
    Well this should be interesting since we never bench press. Hmmmm.

  • http://www.crossfitnyc.org Tyler Durden

    I vote for actually trying to do the bench press with spotters, but if that doesn’t work, we’ll do weighted dips instead.

  • Adam

    Bench Press?

  • A2

    Do we even have a bench?

  • michelle

    Maybe Kim can make a bench in time for the 7 am class!:)

  • Justin

    Im all about benching as its been quite some time, but um yeah, how are we going to manage it?

  • http://www.gonzaleznj.blogspot.com juan g. ‘a true Roman’

    so we’re benching from the floor? This will be interesting.

  • http://www.dammit.com dammit

    we have one bench and posts. it’ll be fine.

  • http://www.crossfitnyc.com Tyler Durden

    We have a bench. The racks we use for squatting are too high, so we’ll use spotters and boxes for safety. Come and wreck your pecs.
    Finally a workout that involves lying down. :)

  • http://www.crossfitnyc.com Tyler Durden

    Dan O.
    I appreciate that the times aren’t suitable for everyone. Unfortunately, 1) nobody was really recognizing the distinction between the beginner and WOD classes before, and 2) we only have so much space and time for group classes. My thinking is that having a 7pm WOD class means we can run as many heats we need for as long as we need.
    We’ll try out this schedule until it proves unfeasible and then make the necessary adjustments.
    To clarify further, if you are constantly hearing variations of the following phrases directed towards you during WODs, then you should consider signing up for Elements:
    “Arch your back!”
    “All the way down!”
    “All the way up!”
    “Arch your back! No, the other way!”
    “Keep your heels down!”
    “This is called a Keh-tul-behl.”
    “Don’t bend your arms!”
    “That wasn’t low enough.”
    “Don’t pull with your arms!”
    “Keep your f—ing heels down!”
    “Press the bar OVER your head…all the way over your head.”
    “What’s your name? Have you been here before?”
    “What do you call that exercise? Really?”
    “Touch your chest to the floor!”
    “Lock out your arms!”

  • Hari

    Perhaps the Intro classes could finish up by the squat racks, leaving the pullup bar area free for people to start warming up a bit before 7:00.

  • sarena

    ALERT: I actually got got 2 single dead hang chin ups todaym (hanx to my cheering crowd for all your encouragement–Ron, Paul, Leslie, Kevin and most of all w/ all my performance anxiety–Keith!! Pics to be posted soon!
    WOD
    105F, 100F, 95,95, 97,98,100,101F
    BTW, I couldnt have done any of this without all your support and encouragement.
    Everone worked hard and was awesome tday!

  • rob

    Great job Sarena!

  • Hari

    Sarena,
    Congratulations! (You are now in a position to give advice to Tyler)

  • Michael

    I’m one of those people that feels comfortable with many exercises and not so with some (mostly o-lifts and anything where my f*&^*& shoulders/flexors mess me up i.e. “I’d *love* my f-inh heels to stay on the ground”) so I’m 50/50.
    My plan I think is to do WODs, especially since there are more per week, and then in September when finances will allow, start privates 1-2x per week to hit all the problem areas.

  • Kevin

    Bench Press WOD
    195-205-210-215-220F-217-217
    Should have gone for 218 on my last set.
    First time benching in over 2 years. Felt good to do it again.

  • Michael

    I’ve noticed on some other affiliates, they do semi-privated (e.g. Level 4 does 3-person semi’s at $35 per person). This would make privates much more feasible for me, at least in terms of doing 2-3 per week consistently.
    Is that a possibility at CFNYC? Obviously, you’d need to line up 3 people with the same goals, but it might simultaneously help 2-3 people advance faster, and increase revenues to the gym (it still works out to $100 per session).
    Just something to think about.

  • http://www.crossfitnyc.com Tyler Durden

    We will gladly do Group/Semi Privates. Get some friends together. The more people you get in a group, the cheaper the per person rate.

  • Dan

    As a Crossfitter back from the 5 Points Gym “until they kick us out” days, I’ve seen a lot of growth and changes in Crossfit NYC. We can all agree that we want the Box to not only survive but thrive. We have different opinions about how to accomplish this. The established membership needs the Box founders and the Box founders need the established membership. Through continued open discussion, we can make the Box the best gym in New York City.
    The key to any business or organization is to attract new business while retaining established
    business. The proposed plan of cutting evening WOD classes 50% ignores the needs of seasoned Crossfitters and will result in the loss of established membership.
    Like many Crossfit members, due to my 9am-5pm work schedule and lack of showers, the 7am and 12:30 classes aren’t an option for me thereby leaving me to the evening classes.
    When the Box opened in January, we offered a 7pm and 8 pm class. We quickly realized the need for an 8 pm class and not yet arisen and it was eliminated. As membership increased and the 7pm class grew too large, a 6pm class was added. Now we have reached saturation point with both the 6pm and 7pm WOD classes where some classes have exceeded 20 people. The need for more WOD classes is critical.
    The idea of running heats starting at 7:00pm until everyone is finished will result in many members being at the Box for 2 hours (or more) to complete a WOD. Seasoned members will stop showing up when it takes 2 hours to do a 30 minute workout. Heats also diminishes the importance we should be placing on people’s personal time. Being at the Box pre or post a WOD should an option, not a requirement.
    Crossfit is a community. Crossfit is not, repeat NOT defined by your perfect form (or as in my case lack thereof) of a lift or movement. We are defined by our members– both new and old. We are passionate people with a passion for life, health and fitness. We come from all walks of life, ages, backgrounds and welcome new members with open arms into our community. By segregating the “new” from the “old” we ignore this vital component of Crossfit.
    Our seasoned veterans are generous with their knowledge and experience. New members need to see people our seasoned amazing athletes blast through a workout (or survive with grit and guile), and then watch those same athletes approach someone who cannot do a movement or lift and see them encouraging, teaching and supporting the new member to reach their next level. New members need to see the bodies of our veterans and be told by them, “6 months ago, I couldn’t do a pull up and now I can bang out 10 and I’ve lost 5% body fat following a Zone Diet.”
    What happens when these new members complete this “elements workshop?” They have to decide whether to join or not based upon other “elements” members, not our Crossfit veterans. Many, I suspect, will not join. The “elements” people need exposure to our seasoned athletes and let some of their passion and encouragement rub off on them. The Box’s members, as much as the training itself, will make new “elements workshop” people join our gym.
    We need to start running this more like a gym collective. The side bar of this page reads: “CrossFitNYC is a gym collective, run by a growing team of certified CrossFit trainers.” The proposed segregation and WOD class elimination does not take this belief into account. There are many, many people who would gladly volunteer to run classes (myself included). With this in mind, we need tap this resource by add new classes, not take them away.
    My lofty proposal would be as follows:
    7am, 9:30 am 12:30 pm, 3:30pm,
    5;30pm , 6:30pm 7:30pm
    (The proposed 9:30 am class caters to the stay at home mom crowd or afternoon into evening workers)
    (The proposed 3pm class caters to the night working crowd where 12:30 may be too early)
    Each of these classes would be a WOD class. As with most things in life, you learn by doing. In Crossfit, you scale until one day, you no longer need to and you can write those glorious words (as prescribed) next to your name, time and/or weight lifted. We can spend the first 15 minutes of every class warming up and teaching the movement we are doing that day. Why teach a clean to a newbie when it may not be part of a WOD for 4 weeks? Teach what they need for the day they show up. If we need more time for a chipper type workout to teach movements, we can adapt.
    We can keep the first class free policy and then $25 per drop in until they join. We will increase membership following the above proposed path, thereby increasing our revenue. We can continue to offer and increase privates. More classes, more members, more revenue.
    Love what I’ve written, hate what I’ve written or be indifferent about what I’ve written as you see fit. If you are reading this, we have a common goal– we have a passion for Crossfit and a passion for the Box and want it to succeed.

  • sarena

    Thanks Hari about the advice giving to Keith. My next goals are to be able to do more than a single and kipping. Perhaps within the next 2 weeks, before I go to the Rippetoe powerlifting cert in San Diego!
    Gonna email Keith the picture since he insisted on it as proof!

  • http://www.crossfitnyc.com Tyler Durden

    Dan
    Lots of great ideas. Some not-so-great ideas.
    First, of all it would be nice to know which of the 8 Dans you are.
    I agree that the existing members must be taken care of. We certainly do need you. However, I feel that you are best served by being kept safe. I cannot watch you while I am trying to explain to some Newb that walks in fifteen minutes late that they are late, that they should be on time, fill out a waiver, do burpees, and then try to teach them the exercises in the WOD. Meanwhile Dan X could be doing thrusters with a rounded back and and his heels off the floor and setting himself up for a herniated disc. At the end of the day the Newb will be scared away and Dan X will be out on the disabled list and we’ll have lost 2 customers.
    Second, while we are a community and a damn good one at that, one of my primary concerns as a coach is your safety. In the last few weeks I have had a lot of safety concerns. These concerns override my need to offer classes to stay-at-home moms and to offer free classes to anybody that walks in off the street.
    While offering you convenient times to workout is a concern it is not as pressing as my need to make sure when you are here I can watch you and make sure you are safe. Similarly, I agree that new members should see veteran members kicking ass. However, new members should not be falsely lured into thinking that faster is better or heavier is better when they are clearly not ready for it. The group dynamic is great when people are ready for it, but can be fatal when people are unprepared.
    “Why teach a clean to a newbie when it may not be part of a WOD for 4 weeks? Teach what they need for the day they show up. If we need more time for a chipper type workout to teach movements, we can adapt.”
    How long did it take you to learn to do cleans? Have you ever tried to teach somebody to do a clean? I’d like you to try to teach somebody all the exercises in yesterday’s WOD and have them perform that WOD safely within the span of an hour. Clearly, we cannot wait until game day for learning the moves. That’s folly. This is a program for general physical preparedness, not a crap shoot.
    I realize that this new system may not be perfect. It may piss some of you off. I hope that after a month or two we will learn from our mistakes and have a better system in place. For now, this seems to me and my partners to be the best solution.
    Dan X, I do really appreciate your comments because they make me rethink this policy over and over again and try to find ways to improve it. It may very well come down to switching the times to 5:30, 6:30 and 7:30 classes. Or maybe we’ll start running half-hour classes.
    Remember this is a black box. Let’s experiment with the inputs and look at the outputs and then refine our inputs. That’s how this thing works.

  • sarena

    Well put Keith!

  • http://www.crossfitnyc.com Tyler Durden

    Another thing to remember is that this elements program is for all newcomers, there will be plenty of strong people coming in and wanting to jump right into the mix. Just like many of you come in with your strengths. The classes will be simple, but they will still be CrossFit. Nobody gets an easy ride or a free pass.

  • Moon

    1) I believe that having just 1 WOD evening class per day is not enough. I would estimate that the classes are going to be very crowded. Off the top of my head, I can think of around two dozen people who typically attend the evening classes who I would guess to be “WOD-capable”. What’s going to happen when nearly all of them show up – especially when the workout is (insert a popular WOD) or requires the new and unique equipment? I would suggest 2 WOD classes in the evenings. Dan mentioned that there used to be an 8 – it may be time to revisit that.
    2) Saturday at 11 yet Sunday at *10:30*? What’s with the half-hour shift? While minor, it adds a unnecessary level of complexity to the schedule. Make both 10:30 or both 11. And if I have a vote, I say make it 11.
    3a) I believe I understand the goal of reducing the drop-in times – and endorse it for the advanced classes – but it just does not sit right with me overall. CrossFit is hard – getting new people to CrossFit should be easy. Putting up a wall (even with occasional doorways) to anyone who simply is not available on either/both dates is something that does not make sense to me. I’m not saying a complete open door is the best policy, only that more thought and creativity should be applied here.
    3b) By Drop-ins, I hope we just mean participants and not just people sticking their nose in to see what it’s about. Again, I feel that part of the reason our community is so successful is because it seems open, welcoming and flat. There should be a certain sense of openness at all levels to help people “get” this right away.

  • Hari

    There is no doubt that letting people do whatever they want, whenever they want, at any level they want, makes things more convenient. It also makes it intimidating for people who walk in off the street and into what appears to be chaos. I think very few CrossFit affiliates throw people off the street in with experienced members.
    (Yes, we can argue that people self-select themselves in or out and, and that is fine. But there is no reason to assume that only those who swim when thrown in the water are worthy of learning to swim.)
    The current setup requires instructors to slow down to guide new people while leaving everyone else on their own, further slowing the progress of the group. To make an analogy to academics, it is like running a seminar where anyone can show up without the prerequisite courses. It can be done, but it can’t be done well.
    I think this is a time when we need to decide whether we should take one step back, in order to take two ahead. I think the new approach makes sense. It will grow the membership, improve the bottom line, and allow for further growth.
    Black Box needs to make the transition from a freewheeling entrepreneurial startup to a business. All successful startups struggle with this transition (or they die). Invariably there is a sadness that the venture is losing some of its soul as it transitions to a more formal organization. This is the cost of growth and success. I consider it an extremely positive sign that Black Box is starting the process. It makes me much more confident of our long-term viability.

  • alex

    Tipping my hat to Moon as well!
    So many great posts today!!

  • Hari

    Alex,
    “Good point Hari, but there is something to be said about working along side someone like you while you were learning to kip, or watching Justin trying to get his double unders done and cursing all the way last night or hear Damnit and Kevin cheer your name.”
    I don’t think this will be lost. The beginers will only be in the Fundamentals class for a month. They will still be free to watch the WOD crowd from the sidelines during that time, and they will be able to join in as soon as they complete the 4-week introduction.

  • dan

    The “Dan” post above is me, Dan DeFilippi who has been at Crossfit since the 5 Points Gym days when some nights it was Josh and I alone mashing with “Fight Gone Bad”, “Diane” or “Fran.” We have grown considerably since then. I am the same Dan DeFilippi who used to main post back in the spring/early summer of 2006. (See the archives)
    I agree that instruction is vital and no one wants to have an injury happen. But this instruction must be an INCLUSIVE instruction, not a segregated instruction.
    The elements class plan seems to be a done deal. That being so, one evening WOD class cannot and will not work.
    Please, please, pretty please, with sugar on top,(to steal Keith’s line about keeping your heels down on squats) add another evening WOD class. I strongly push for a 5:30pm, 6:30pm and 7:30 pm classes where the 5:30 is a elements/intro class and the 6:30 and 7:30 are WOD classes. People will volunteer to run the extra WOD class (Again, myself included). Toy around with exact times as needed, but P L E A S E add another evening WOD class.

  • Dan O

    Moving back here as requested.
    I do agree with the other Dan. My sense is that the on-ramp classes or sessions should be run sort of off-line, either as a free one on one (or small group) session with one of the trainers, or as a, perhaps, twice weekly session, say a Saturday and a Wednsday evening class for example. They have to go through a few sessions to work on the basics of Crossfit movements and then are released into the wild, as it were.
    The Box seems to be growing (you guys know the numbers better than me), and the evening classes seem to be pretty consistenly running at 10+ particiapants. Reducing the number of WOD classes is likely to be a problem logisitically, and I don’t exactly relish the idea of heats wandering off into the wee hours of the night. I suspect I am not alone. Perhaps I exaggerate, but I could easily see the need for 4-5 heats at our current numbers which means, given the spill over, that some of us will be there until 9:00 or later finishing a workout.
    You undeniably raise an important point–there is a need for instruction for new people outside of the 10 minutes before they are thrown into the crucible, but I’m not certain the proposed solution meets the various needs of the various members that need to be served.
    Let’s also not rule out the day time hours as a part of the solution at least. There seems to be a presumption that on-ramp sessions can’t happen during the day, but there may be a numebr of people who can make it out of work for a session, or aren’t beholden to a schedule like I sadly am.
    If we had more space/equipment many of these points would be moot, but we’re not there yet and while there is no reason not to experiment with this, I suspect we’re going to discover there are a number of new problems created.
    I feel strongly that we should avoid cannabalizing all of the evening time, and yet still find a way to make a smooth transition for new members. We still don’t know the volume for these new proposed classes–and this is where I think most of the potential error lies. Why not start with one or two dedicted classes (Sat. Wedd. in my example), and assess the demand at that point?

  • Avery

    “What happens when these new members complete this ‚Äúelements workshop?‚Äù They have to decide whether to join or not based upon other ‚Äúelements‚Äù members, not our Crossfit veterans. Many, I suspect, will not join. The ‚Äúelements‚Äù people need exposure to our seasoned athletes and let some of their passion and encouragement rub off on them. The Box‚Äôs members, as much as the training itself, will make new ‚Äúelements workshop‚Äù people them join our gym.”
    I definitely agree there is something inspiring about watching some of the awesome athletes we have at the box perform the benchmark workouts. And newcomers can be more than welcome to watch these WODs if they choose. Or check it out online like many of us do.
    However, I think that it can be a pretty frightening experience for a newcomer to do their first WOD without any prior formal instruction from a trainer or any real knowledge about Crossfit exercises and protocol. I have seen this happen to a few newcomers in the past few weeks, and have yet to see many of these “potential” members return. These people are the future of the Box.
    Even a very scaled down version of “Fran” or “Cindy” can be pretty overwhelming to a new Crossfitter, especially if they haven’t been working out in the past few months or years. We want people to build their confidence at Crossfit and feel empowered; not be scared off the first time they come in to the gym because they can’t kip or deadlift 300 pounds plus. In fact, don’t we want the people who aren’t world class athletes, who truly want to be part of something that will make them stronger, fitter, and capable of doing things they never thought they could possibly do?
    With the current class sizes and organization, I’ve definitely noticed Keith, et al. struggle between trying to teach someone who can’t squat at all during a front squat WOD, while simultaneously trying to help another person achieve a pr at an extremely heacy weight. Both of these people need close attention if they are expected to make progress at Crossfit in a safe manner.
    I don’t think an Elements class constitutes segregated learning – instead it can be seen as the gateway of instruction to safely participate in Crossfit and become part of the larger group. For example, I don’t know much about formal Olympic lifting, and while watching Adam or whoever deadlift heavy is a great example, it still doesn’t teach me how to clean. Or jerk. Or snatch. Properly. And safely.
    All of this being said, one WOD class at night seems not enough. Everytime I have been to the Box at night recently, there is just not enough space for everyone to do the WOD without being on top of one another or staying past 8 pm. Perhaps this issue can be addressed after the Elements class has been instituted, if it is necessary.
    Besides, we have to remember that any sort of re-organization or implementation of new policies for a business (and when we get down to it, that’s what this is, not a true “collective”) in its first few years, there’s always going to be a few growing pains along the way.
    My 5 and a half cents.

  • Justin

    I would also like to say that yes, Crossfit is a little scary… Now Im not talking about being unsafe, and I know that is a very important concern, but I mean one of the mascots for crossfit is pukie the clown. I think sometimes newbies should come in and be a little scared or overwhelmed. I mean it says at the top of the website “hostile workout environment”. Now I say this tounge-in-cheek and jokingly, but there is some truth to it. We aren’t Planet Fitness or NYSC. We aren’t comfy and cozy. But Im with ya’ll. If it means coming at 7pm, 8pm, or hell, Midnight.

  • Moon

    I second Justin’s “Midnight Madness” idea. Done on occasion (monthly? Seasonally?) that could be a fun/promotional event.

  • http://www.crossfitnyc.org Tyler Durden

    Great points, everybody. Dan D, thanks for clarifying. I know you’ve been down with us for a long time. I am not looking to leave you without options.
    I agree that we need to find more times for our current base to work out. Here’s a creative idea: why don’t you all form groups of six people and all schedule three to five half-hour slots with a trainer and always work out in the same group at the same times. For example all the Dans can form a group, “The Dan-imals,” and book Mondays, Wednesdays and Fridays from 5:30 to 6 with Court. Then on the weekends we can have The Dan-imals face off with Dammit’s Angels.
    Seriously, keep coming up with ideas for getting everybody into that little room to workout.
    However, let’s not confuse that issue with the issue of on-ramping new students. There is no getting around the fact that we need to get new people in the gym and keep them there. Right now it’s a huge priority. Bringing in new members is the only way we are going to survive.
    As I recall we tried something similar at Five Points and Justin, Leslie and Hari all took advantage of it. I think it worked well for them. All of the members that were here in the beginning were slowly scaled up to the current intensity due to design and due to lack of equipment. It’s now that we have so many new people and are doing most WODs as prescribed that we are having to define a real beginner’s program.
    Please keep in mind that this is the only gym of its kind. I don’t know of any other commercial gym where you can get coaching every time you workout and expert instruction in Kettlebells, Olympic lifting and the various other skills that we bring to the table. You’d have to be on a very good sports team to get that or pay several different private trainers. I know the draw for some of you is that you can come and behave like animals and torture yourselves for an hour. However, for others the draw is getting trained and coached by qualified people and getting great results.
    Some CrossFit gyms require all new members to take privates. That seems a little cost-prohibitive to me. Ask yourselves whether you would have taken 4 privates with us before joining. Perhaps we can just require all current and all new members to take at least 4 privates with us before being allowed in the group classes. That would solve the problems with cannibalizing the group classes.

  • Sweden

    **Warning: Essay**
    I would also like to add to the on going discussion about the new schedule…
    I agree with both sides on this issue. Yes, we need to have new memebers start off in their own classes with a more controlled environment. Yes, it also needs that sense of goal setting and personal betterment that comes along with seeing others perform the WODs and also having everyone cheer you on.
    When I first started Crossfit I could do squat. Actually, I couldn’t even do a squat. However, through 6 months of hard work, great training, and excellent support I’m coming along. Even though I know I have a long way to go, I feel that these are the true Elements of Crossfit and the main reasons of why I keep coming back. I want to delve deeper into two of those concepts because the third, hard work, is intrinsic and the least controlled variable of the three.
    To quote Steve Cotter (among many others, but he is the most recent and well known on these boards), “Practice doesn’t make perfect. Perfect pratice makes perfect”. Which basically means that you’re not getting anywhere if you’re doing the exercise wrong. The first workouts I had at the gym were scaled to my fitness level and I was critiqued heavily on my performance. Afterwards, each of the instructors had given me advice on how I can improve in the areas that I needed help in, which was basically everything. Without this individualized attention, I may not have thought that I had what it took to continue with crossfit.
    If I had followed the WODs on the main site I would most certainly not be in the same condition I am today. Even though the exercises are the same, I would have been without the key points of knowing how to do an exercise properly and what my limitations are. I probably would not have known when to push hard and when not to, resulting in some serious injury. Some people may already know how to train themselves, but I have a feeling that the majority of those who are going to end up training in the gym will not. That is why I feel that there should be seperate classes.
    Next is the sense of community. I heard about Crossfit from a friend and went to see what it was like. At first I wasn’t sure I was in the right place, but after a few classes the trainers knew my name, remembered what I needed work on, and planned out some warmups that would fit me. They were the beginning of that communal sense that Crossfit offers, and I feel the personalized attention may be diluted in the bigger classes if their attention is diffused to too many areas. Yes, having people cheer me on makes me push myself through a workout when I’m ready to give up. That’s why I think if there are people who want to keep the sense of community and are willing to volunteer their time should show up as a type of training assistants to the regularly scheduled instructor. Going through the moiton of how to push press or deadlift will show the class the progress that crossfit can give while freeing up
    The instructor to focus on the movements of the class. Also at the end of the workout those assistants can cheer on the Elemental students and
    give tips and testimonials at the end. This is the best way that I can think of to keep the necessary intended outcome of both of these sides while not impeding the effectiveness of each other.
    Those are my thoughts on segregation at the box, but I also have a few on the schedule. With the new schedule there’s a concern that there will be too many people cramming into WOD classes and at the same time there’s also one class being eliminated on Sunday. I propose that the schedule be changed and I’ll put in parenthesis my reasons why: (R=Thursday)
    Elements
    Class A on M&W at 7pm
    Class B on T&R at 6pm (This will help keep the regular rest day in between workouts unlike the M&F combination originally offered. Also, I think more people would be willing to join a class if their Fridays weren’t compromised. The 7pm class on M&W is for flexibility as well. There may be some new people who won’t be able to make a 6pm class but rather a 7pm, but that is another area that will have to be tested with time)
    Intro
    Saturdays at 10am and Sundays at 10am (Even though there isn’t a rest day, it’s an intro class so people may only go once a week and if they went twice in a row, well they’ll eventually do it with the WODs anyway. Also, being an intro class most likely won’t gas them as bad as a WOD. Again, I think less new people would show up on a Friday night and this frees up another 6pm slot for the Crossfit veterans, while keeping all currently running class times.)
    WOD
    M&W 7am, 1230pm, 6pm
    T&R 7am, 1230pm, 7pm
    F 7am, 1230pm, 6pm, 7pm
    Sat 11am
    Sun 11am
    Those, although lengthy, are my thoughts on the new schedule change. I understand that there are many angles that I may have missed, but this seems like the most reasonable schedule to me.
    Lastly, while reading the comments the one undeniable commonality that I have seen in every comment is the desire for the box to grow iand become superior to what it is now.
    Lastly, it is important to remember that we are a strong collective at CrossfitNYC and our goals can be achieved through our combined efforts.

  • http://www.crossfitnyc.org Tyler Durden

    I hear two basic complaints: one, don’t rob us of a WOD class and two, don’t make me work on my form because I know it sucks.
    I have lots of sympathy for number one and want to remedy that.
    For those of you that are scared that I will be on you to fix your form, you should stay awake all night and toss and turn, because I am going to come after you like never before. You had better start fixing your weak links. If your back rounds when you squat without weight. Guess what. I’m not letting you put a barbell on your back. You’ll be getting big fat zeros on your squat scores for your CrossFit Total. If you aren’t squatting low enough, guess what. That’s another zero. Hey your head didn’t go over the chinup bar…uh zero!
    Sweet dreams.

  • Hari

    Perhaps one way to increase the WOD class time while maintaining the new scheduling concept is to devote the official rest day to making up any of the last three WOD’s.
    For example, tomorrow, the WOD class could be used to allow people to make up back squats, the hopper routine, or bench presses. The odds are that anyone coming tomorrow did not come all three pervious days. This approach would allow people to skip a potentially crowded night, while still sticking with the WOD format.
    In a way, it increases the number of WOD classes from 1 to 1 and 1/3, and it allows everyone two chances to do any given WOD, giving greater flexibility for the experienced crowd.

  • Justin

    I like the idea Harry, however I think it stifles the creativity of the trainers… I like rest days because it gives us a little something different to do that’s not always the main HQ WOD. Like the skills day we had last week for example. It really gave me a chance to work on those skills (in particular gymnastic skills) that I have a hard time with. When we were at 5 points, we rarely followed the HQ WOD (and from what I see from other affiliates, neither do they including Crossfit Santa Cruz) and we had some great workouts then. I would hate to lose that aspect.

  • Jeff

    Actually Mr. Durden, I don’t think that second complaint is a widely held. Just skimming through the posts, I don’t see many objecting that they think their form has no room for improvement. After all, CrossFit humbles each of us and no seasoned practitioner would ever be so haughty to think they were perfect and their poo didn’t stink.

  • Michael

    The thing about ‘Elements’ if you think about it, is we all, with rare exceptions, need work on various parts of our CF arsenal. I’d almost love to see an Intro-Elements which is a required 4-6 week class for newbies (core moves, posture, etc) and then 2-3 ongoing scheduled Elements classes that concentrate on specific aspects of the work; Elements Bars & Rings (Kips, Dips, Muscle-Ups, Skin the Cats), Elements O-Lifts, etc.
    For me ‘committing’ to an Elements calss instead of the WOD is an iffy proposition since I’d hate to forego WODs and then end up in 3 or 4 classes on things I can already do.
    I’d definitley be up for concentrated Elements though.
    In terms of the Community thing though, I think (outside of a few people who offered to teach) that is one thing we have overlooked here; sure more WOD classes would be great, but who will/can teach them?
    Maybe some of us can start helping out on ‘Elements’ and leave Court/Keith/Josh/Mike/Alison free for higher-level instruction? Certianly one or more of us can be ‘certified’ to take newbies and show them warm-ups, basic bar work, and for some of us even O-Lifts. I don’t know if I’d be qualified for an entire Elements class, maybe with one other person who can fill in my missing-links though I could, who knows?
    It might even be feasible to break a 6-week Elements course out into regimented segments and let different people handle different weeks as their schedule and strengths allow. That would allow us each to be exposed to newbies (and vice-versa) and again, free up Keith et al to take the rest of us to a higher level. Also as they say, the best way to learn is to teach…
    I’m personally all for having my form critiqued. I don’t want to ingrain bad habits, and to tell the truth I don’t want to be an ‘average beginner’ or ‘intermediate athelete’. I’ve gotten my basic fitness back and am ready now to see if I can ‘go elite’ and push past these limitations I’ve discovered along the way. I just think that is far more likely if the core trainers don’t have to suddenly cut their time in 1/2 to train new members when it seems many of us could do the same (for basic elements).
    On another note, I’d love to see if we can take advantage of the summer and do some more outdoor WODs. THIS might allow us to do concurrent classes, with an outdoor WOD and an indoor Elements class.

  • Ewen

    Hi all,
    Lots going on while I’m away apparently, including various PRs and monster performances. I’m going to feel like a noob all over again when I come back!
    Speaking of which, I’ve known for a while that I needed to work on my form. And I’m sorry to say, so do most of us! Let’s face it: if you’re blasting through the WOD’s and/or trying to become an “advanced” or “elite” athlete as defined by the Crossfit gods, you shouldn’t be satisfied with average form. If Crossfit is your sport, you should be ready to do basic drills on a regular basis. Personally, I can’t think of a single bar exercise where any one of the Box’s trainers or more experienced lifters couldn’t give me a hint or two. That is why I think I will enroll in an Elements Workshop (*mandatory gripe* although 6pm isn’t easy for me and I’ll have to adjust my work schedule).
    I think all current and future members should be strongly encouraged to take part regularly in some sort of Elements workout, with the clear understanding that the focus would be on form, not intensity, and that they should be prepared to demo exercices and assist beginners as required – if their own skills actually allow them to do so. A little bit of humility and solidarity could give us a big boost, individually (better form = better performance) and as a community (mixed crowd, shared experience).
    On a final note, I believe the 7am classes have always been less than crowded. A few extra people waking up early now and then could help ease the pressure on the evening classes.
    I think we are on the right track. Let’s keep throwing ideas out there (with full extension, please).

  • http://www.crossfitnyc.org Tyler Durden

    “If not intimate with the elements (squat, deadlift, clean, pull-up, push-up, box jump, etc) of the CrossFit routines then gaining familiarity has to be the first step. If unfamiliar or less than very confident with the elements, then nearly any regimen with the singular focus of learning the sound mechanics of basic movements is a perfect prescription for the first month or two.
    For those new to the CrossFit method it will be necessary to establish consistency with the Workout of the Day before increasing the intensity of the workouts. The workouts exceed the capacity of the fittest men on earth. Be careful.” Coach Greg Glassman
    The prescription is and always has been:
    1) Mechanics
    2) Consistency
    3) Intensity
    Anybody that has bypassed or ignored the mechanics stage is in for a rude awakening. At some point your scores will stop improving and/or you will get injured. There is no way around it.

  • michael

    hey I have an idea… can we do some wod/elements package???
    i want to keep the intensity AND work on form…
    oh man, i’m an addict.

  • Kevin

    I am all for the Elements class. In fact I will definitely be part of it because I know there are plenty of exercises I need improvement on in form, technique, etc. Just because I can do a few things well that are part of Crossfit there are still plenty I need to work on. First thing is O-lifts and some other gymnastics drill that can always use refinement, etc.You can never truly stop learning. If you think you have a good grasp on something chances are you probably don’t.
    Sign me up for some Elements. The great thing about the Elements class is you can really work out the kinks in your weaknesses and make improvements. I doubt people really work on their weaknesses outside of the Box.
    We need a class like Elements where we can focus on skill building 100% and not a crash course prior to a WOD

  • michael

    kevin; are you interested in arranging a semi-private elements class with me? i was thinking 3-4 people max 2x per week. we can customize for our needs/experience.

  • Justin

    You know, after this weekend, I agree with you 100% Kevin. I didn’t realize how much my deadlifts have fallen, and my gymnastic skills are pretty much non-existent. So, I think some Element classes are in the future for me as well.

  • Kevin

    Michael that sounds good to me. Tuesday and Friday anytime and Thursday til 6PM. Wednesday until about 3PM.
    Let me know what works for you. I will talk to Keith tomorrow morning when I come in for the WOD. Keith can I do Diane and the hang clean WOD tomorrow morning? Thanks

  • Michael

    Hi Kevin, that is great. I can usually swing a mid-day during the week, say 1:30 or so (post 12:30 WOD). Mon-Wed-Fri preferable but flexible. Chad also contacted me regarding this, I’ll get back to him and see what he thinks. Not sure if you saw my post from earlier in thread but mostly looking for:
    Core O-Lifts
    ‘Hard’ O-Lifts (Cleans/Jerks/Snatches), though I think until I get the core this might wait.
    Kip
    Muscle-Up
    Handstands (can’t do them yet, flexibility or mindset not sure)
    L-Sits
    Core KBs (Swing/Snatch)
    GHD
    For me, I’d like to not have to sub any of the above, and would like to be able to add Kips to my Cindy type WODs.
    Let’s talk to Keith and see if we can line up 1 or 2 people more max. That would be ideal since then we can still do WODs and custom hit Elements. Keith wasn’t lying about yelling about keeping our heels down, I was the recipient on Saturday.

  • Kevin

    Some stuff I would like to work on includes:
    O-lifts in all its forms including assistance exercises.
    Powerlifts back squats,deads and bench
    Gymnastics drills like handstand holds, freestanding and against the wall HSPU, front and back levers, improving all ring work.
    Lsits and all core strengthening-ab wheel,dragon flags and GHD
    Pullup strength and grip strength
    jump rope
    KB’s in all its forms
    Running
    Weighted exercises like pullups dips etc.
    Want to build absolute and explosive strength and maintain and improve conditioning

  • michael

    kevin, sounds perfect. in tes of running maybe we can talk to Brian D. about outdoors since he has track training. i’ve been wanting to do something like run the reservoir (2.5 k) then maybe train sprint tabatas and do 400m an 800m runs (not all in one day). Plus HQ has vids on sprint training (lying down starts etc)

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