January 08, 2014
Straight-talking CrossFit trainers reveal why they believe the tough-love approach is best when it comes to coaching. Andréa Maria Cecil reports.
Although soft-spoken, Jeff Martin is known for being a straightforward coach at his affiliate, CrossFit Brand X in Ramona, Calif. And while he says his style has mostly yielded positive results, it hasn’t always resonated with every member.
“We’ve had to fire a couple of clients, and it’s ugly and hard. But it’s for the best,” he said. “And when it happens, ya know, nobody feels good about it.”
One of the last members with whom CrossFit Brand X parted ended up creating a Facebook group called “I Hate Jeff Martin.” But Martin believes not mincing words has had a positive effect on the vast majority of the affiliate’s membership, and he said it’s important for trainers and coaches to help athletes understand that they’re being straightforward because they want them to improve.
“When did we get so soft that telling an adult that they need to push their knees out needs to be qualified with, ‘You have really cool socks on today’?” he said.