How to Address the Mindset of CrossFit

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“A CrossFit Affiliate Coach has the responsibility of helping athletes set and achieve their goals,” wrote Greg Amundson in a 2010 CrossFit Journal article.

The article, “Coaching the Mental Side of CrossFit,”was a deep dive into coaching athletes using goals, positive self-talk, etc. in order to help their mental game flourish. Amundson shared in the article that he observed the best CrossFit athletes knew how to control and optimize their self-talk. 

“This potent mental skill resulted in their ability to formulate and achieve their goals – both inside the gym and out – with consistency and grace,” he wrote. “The mental adaptation to CrossFit was of critical importance to CrossFit athletes and Coaches hoping to forge elite fitness.”

But how do you as an Affiliate apply this? While Amundson does give coaching five tips in the article, other Boxes have found ways to focus on mindset. For example, CrossFit Mindset in Los Angeles, California, offers a weekly one-hour class to “process the mental and emotional journey of fitness in order to better achieve your goals.”

It’s a hybrid of education and processing on concepts and theories. Athletes discuss the week’s workouts, finding patterns in their mindset. The goal, states CrossFit Mindset’s website, is to rewire athletes’ thinking.

The gym gives a definition of what mindset is on its website: “Mindset is a methodology using fitness as a way in rewiring old thought patterns, incorporating new belief systems, and dissolving mental blocks to increase performance, but more importantly, the quality of your fitness and life. Mindset takes a different approach to the mental game by using the power of community to create a dialogue and crush mental blocks together. Then taking what we learn about ourselves from inside the box, gym, field and applying them to other areas of our life. Simply put, Mindset uses fitness to increase human potential.”

At CrossFit Sioux Falls in Sioux Falls, South Dakota, the gym has taken a simpler approach to bringing mindset into the Box. The mental game is discussed onits website in hopes to educate members about the mindsetbehind a WOD: “CrossFit bleeds through much more than the physical benefits. We push past mental and physical barriers more than ever and during every single workout, if you truly push yourself. Well, do you? All of these three aspects – confidence, character and mental toughness – go hand in hand and build off of each other. Be confident in your abilities and accomplishments, build character through the ups and downs of training, and always believe in yourself during the workouts, and find the strength and mental toughness that is within you.”

Whether it’s a class or simply information online, how are you discussing the mental game at your Box?

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