Before it all fades I should get some thoughts down on The 2013 Games.
It seems that Castro has a few aims with his programming of The Games specifically. These aren’t value judgements here, it’s essentially his sport and he’s done a phenomenal job at developing it into the fastest growing, most exciting new sport out there. Plus I could be wrong with anything I out here, I don’t have an inside track to the man.
- Differentiate between the fittest and the best trained. Because CF makes its livelihood off Level 1s and affiliate fees, and long ago Glassman was quite public about periodisation being bullshit, the coaches out there (Rudy Nielsen, CJ Martin, Ben Bergeron, OPT) who to some degree have ‘figured out’ the sport need to be proven wrong here. They want to be able to say that you can’t predict The Games, and there is no magical formula beyond constantly varied.
This is why they love it when Froning says he just does what he feels like, and doesn’t talk about planing his off season and peaking for The Stub Hub.
- Try to eliminate strategy and tactics as much as possible. Insofar as its a sport, it appears HQ want it to be about the concept of ‘fittest’, and not smartest, not the best strategy, etc., just who can do more work faster. This is really evident in 13.2, where it was simple keep on moving. Giving athletes less time to prepare, introducing unpracticed elements, and separating coaches from athletes all fit in here. Again, it’s to preserve the legacy and founding ideals/teachings of CF.
There’s either a reticence to go against the founding principles, which can be blasé referred to do as ‘just do shit thrown together’ or it’s a massive perceived threat to the livelihood of CrossFit HQ. if it becomes wildly accepted and believed that you need a firm foundation to do CrossFit at a sporting level, based of years of structured progressive programming, then it will become something unattainable to the masses. If the idea that you need to be really fit just to do CF is engrained, people will stop training in affiliates, and taking part in The Open.
CrossFit’s miracle is that they’ve completely blurred the line between fan and athlete, and as such it’s important to preserve that. “He’s just better than me” is a lot easier to swallow than “He has a firm foundation in this through years of S&C and smarter, more structured periodisation.”
- Test for adaptability to new unknown tasks, not the CrossFit tests that got you thus far. Standard CrossFit workouts win you The Open, and Regionals. But not The Games. If you look at the original doctrine, we’re meant to “regularly learn and play new sports.”
They’ve decided that to win The Games, you’ve got to be able to adapt fastest and best to any new task. One could argue that this is either the 11th component of fitness or a true test of how well you’ve mastered all 10.
This last part seems to be where most of the griping about the events stems from. The argument being that you master standard CrossFit to get to The Games, and a completely different skillset wins them.
Tomorrow I’ll post my event by event analysis.