Beware of Being Aware


Recently, one of my co-workers got hurt during a WOD.

She had been taking it easy for a while, but last week she did too many Cleans after having not done them since early December. In fact, she tore her bicep.

Now, my co-worker is stubborn, and she knows it. Her body was telling her to stop, but she continued on. And then, boom. Injury.

I suppose we are all have a bit of stubbornness in us. I find myself a bit stubborn in CrossFit, depending on the workout. I might pick too heavy of a weight simply because it’ll mean I can Rx the workout. I also might refuse to do real pushups because those modified pushups are so much easier.

With that said, I think it’s essential to be aware that your members all have a stubborn side. You might think Jerry, who’s been around for three years, understands what his weight should be on the WOD. But today he might be shooting too high and is going to risk tearing something.

I think it’s important to remember that members who have been around awhile, though experienced, can be stubborn. Despite their ability to perform all the skills and lift all the weights, they too can still overdo it on a WOD. My co-worker has been doing CrossFit for almost three years, and yet she hurt herself.

However, a Coach can only do so much. They can tell a member to lower the weight or perform a modification, and then the member will ultimately make the choice. But, I think the biggest thing is for Coaches to be aware of what their members can and can’t do.

At my Box, one of my Coaches has taken weights off people’s bars in the middle of a workout. He’d rather a member get mad at him then see someone get hurt. He’s keeping watch of everyone’s form and will stop a member mid-lift if he or she is doing something wrong. He’s not concerned about time, but rather form and safety.

Now, I’m not saying my co-worker’s Coaches didn’t try to stop her. I have no idea if they did, or if they saw any indication she was hurt. Ultimately, the responsibility for her injury is on herself. But, let’s remember to watch and be aware of members with the sole purpose of keeping them safe and healthy. Relationships and a caring community are more important than Rxing a WOD.

So, just because a member says he or she can doing something doesn’t mean that’s true. And even if it means forcing a member to lower the weight or stop the WOD, they’ll thank you for it later.

Heather is the editor for Box Pro Magazine. Contact her at