An insight into Coach Development at LiftOff CrossFit.
Our bread and butter here is coaching. It is the service that sets us apart from other gyms and as such, a huge amount of my/our time is dedicated too making sure that all of us are the very best coaches that we can be.
This is a complex process of learning, implementing, assessing the success and then going back to the start and re learning, re implementing with hopefully improved results. This applies to all aspects of coaching, from programme design, to giving a cue to improve someones squat. Underlying all that is the human element, as a coach we need to be able to relate to people from all walks of life with so many different needs, and ways of learning. This can be tricky to say the least!
So how do we develop our coaching? I think its helpful to give you, as members, an insight into what goes on behind closed doors.
We are all at different stages of our development as coaches, but the learning doesn’t really stop. My main role within the business is as head coach and that means I am responsible for programming and helping our coaches improve, including myself.
Every week we hold staff training. This will start up with a round up of member issues, anyone with injuries or ongoing problems that are affecting their training is discussed. This is incredibly important so that we all know how to help injured members get the most out of class safely, I personally liase with Jess a huge amount about members and make sure people are slowly built back up to full fitness. This is fed back to the coaching team within training so that everyone knows who needs what scaling.
Once that is done, we move onto more formal education and this can be based on so many different things. It normally involves me teaching a certain subject or one of the other team members doing that. Recently Tors presented to us about human metabolism and how it works, going pretty deep into the science. As I write this today we have just finished off an hours coaching session learning how to identify movement patterns and how they affect programme design in terms of workouts.
Some of the most important aspects that we cover are movement coaching, scaling and dealing with the different levels of expertise within a class. This is incredibly important and all of us as coaches have different areas that we need to work on. Some of our most valuable feedback comes from Tors and Anne Lise, because they have come from being members themselves, they have an insight that the rest of us don’t and this is incredibly important.
We all have different experience levels, gained in different ways. James has been doing PT and coaching for 9 years, in a globo gym and CrossFit facility.
He has accrued a huge amount of practical experience. LC has worked in the gym environment for most of her adult life, performed at a high level in CrossFit and is hungry for more knowledge! Craig has a deep understanding of how the body works and movement, accrued over years of being a sports therapist, alongside this he has been deep into his own training for 9-10 years.
Tors and Anne Lise have been members for a long time and have both accrued around 60 hours of one to one coaching with myself, learning how to see movement and change it, understanding programme design. On top of that a LOT of time coaching or shadowing in classes and foundations under our watchful eye, with constant feedback. I wish that James, Craig and I had this when we started.
So in our own different ways we all still have so much to learn and so much more to give as coaches, yet as a group I am confident that we provide one of the best coaching services in the country that you will find in a gym open to the public.