In this video, HQ trainer Chris Spealler shares his programming insights at a Coaches Prep Course. His focus is explaining the difference between biasing CrossFit programming as opposed to targeting our programming.
Spealler says that CrossFit’s goal is general physical preparedness (GPP), so specialized goals of a three-minute mile or an 800-lb. back squat are not realistic.
“I want the best of both worlds,” he says.
Programming bias allows for that specialization. CrossFit Football and CrossFit Endurance are examples of programming for specific athletes interested in pursing different domains at the sacrifice of some of their GPP.
On the other hand, targeting rounds out GPP by filling in holes.
“I target my programming to work on my weaknesses,” Spealler says.
His own programming has a strength bias because he admits that is his weakness. Fellow HQ trainer Matt Chan is targeting his endurance and uses monostructural elements with more frequency in his programming. Other athletes target their gymnastics skills.
However, neither a programming bias nor targeting is essential for every athlete; it just takes some trickery as a coach, Spealler says.
“If you program well, if you give people good exposure to CrossFit, give them a heavy day once a week, couplets triplets the majority of your time, go long every once in a while, no one in your gym is ever going to have to target. No one in your gym is ever going to have to bias ever, ever, ever,” Spealler says.
Additional reading: CrossFit Strength Bias by Jeff Martin and Darrell White, published Feb. 7, 2009.