For those who are not familiar with what CrossFit entails, it is a sport of total fitness focusing on strength, dexterity, power, flexibility, cardiovascular health and many more beneficial areas. While focusing on all of these areas, no two CrossFit workouts will be the same. These programs are led by a trainer, and the scale and severity of the workouts can be adjusted to the experience of the participant. In my experience, CrossFit allowed me to be in the best shape of my life and improve my overall health, but like everything else, it has its advantages and disadvantages. In my personal experience the advantages outweighed the disadvantages.
Through my experience with CrossFit, I encountered the following advantages and disadvantages.
Trainer Led Workouts
With a trainer to lead you in a workout you don’t have to worry about which exercises to do that day or planning a routine. You also get the guidance you need to succeed and the cost is significantly cheaper than a personal trainer.
Close Team Feeling
When you work with others in the program you are introduced to people of the same experience and skill level as you, and you get a team feeling that allows you to push yourself harder. With a stronger connection to the program and the group you are also more likely to stay in the program longer.
With a focus on total fitness you become a better-rounded athlete. Having total fitness not only improves your athletic ability, but it transitions into better health benefits. Having power and strength is good if that is your goal, but the added cardiovascular benefits from CrossFit improve your lifestyle and overall health.
Most trainers aren’t bad, but you usually get what you pay for. If you go though a less reputable program you can run into trainers who don’t train you properly on form and try to progress you too quickly which can lead to injuries. Also with your workouts never being the same you can have problems approaching the new workouts if you have been previously mislead. Because of this you should always go through reputable programs that have good feedback about their trainers.
Experience V.S. Cost
While the cost of a CrossFit program is usually less than that of a decent personal trainer, it can lose its value if you have enough experience to do the workouts on your own. After a few years in the program I no longer felt the need to pay when I knew how to guide myself through an effective CrossFit workout. If you are just starting out or do not know how to train yourself effectively, this is still a great and cost effective option for guided workouts.