You can say what you want about CrossFit, but the advent of CrossFit and its absolutely huge community is an unquestionably enormous net positive for fitness as a whole.
It’s gotten a ton of people into, and excited about, exercise. Many that wouldn’t have done so otherwise.
Not only into exercise – but actually using a barbell.
And actually performing compound lifts!
And I don’t have statistics, but when it comes to retention and people STICKING WITH IT, I’d bet Crossfit wins big there, too.
Call it a ‘cult’ and sneer at it all you want, but Crossfit has a huge sense of COMMUNITY and atmosphere of camaraderie to it.
They support each other. And they’re welcoming.
Combine that with one of the other reasons it’s often criticized – high gym membership fees – and you can bet people actually SHOW UP.
Again, no statistics or hard evidence – but you don’t have to look far to see that the average group of ‘hardcore’ gym bros/bodybuilders/powerlifters often aren’t quite as welcoming to newbies.
You can start with the overpopulation of cheeky “gym memes” in your social media newsfeed.
The resounding ‘elitist’ attitude that seems to be in vogue with most of the fitness community is unfortunate.
Does Crossfit do a lot of dumb shit?
The high injury risk that comes with doing certain things the way they do – for example performing very technical exercises like Olympic lifts to failure – is totally unnecessary. Absolutely.
Is Crossfit a bit too general and randomized for an advanced athlete to use for training for a specific goal? Yeah, probably.
And there’s of course the popularization of the completely nonsensical ‘Paleo Diet’ trend – which really needs to disappear off the face of the earth….
YET STILL, Crossfit is doing a hell of a lot more good than bad – and a WAY BETTER job than any other avenue, sport, community, etc at getting people excited about exercising effectively.
Crossfit is winning. And you should be glad. I sure am.