The Pros and Cons of Specializing

The pros and cons of specializing.Choosing your specific coaching avenue can be a challenge. So, should you even push your Coaches to do so? Should you yourself specialize? Dave Rubin, owner of CrossFit Durham in Durham, North Carolina answered questions from Box Pro about the topic, offering up advice to other Affiliates and Coaches.

Box Pro: What are the pros of Coaches specializing?

Dave Rubin: Specialized Coaches give us the opportunity to offer specialized programming like powerlifting and Olympic weightlifting classes. We’ve also been able to launch a Kids program once we had a couple of our Coaches [take that course].

BP: What are the cons?

DR: The only real cons I see are that we potentially lose some flexibility in our scheduling if we have just one or two Coaches who lead a specialized class for which they are the only ones qualified to lead.

BP: How can a Coach decide on what to specialize?

DR: I think they should pursue more knowledge and skills in areas they are most personally interested in. Working on and exploring weaknesses is great, but if one has a real passion for a particular element of sport or lifting they should go for it.

BP: As an Affiliate, what role should you play in your Coaches’ careers?

DR: We help our Coaches figure out what specialty certifications would serve them well, as well as provide them with increasing opportunities in our Box and beyond.

BP: Tips/advice for other Affiliates on helping their Coaches grow, whether in diversity or in specialization?

DR: I like for our Coaches to be as well rounded as possible. This gives us flexibility in programming and scheduling at our Affiliate. I push our Coaches to seek out the continuing education that I think best suits them and their skill/interest level.  We discuss the possibilities and additional opportunities that could be created if a Coach were to specialize further in a particular discipline, like starting a Kids program, etc.

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