If you are new to CrossFit you’re at a great advantage, and you have a once in a lifetime opportunity at your doorstep…Tabula Rasa, the blank slate- take advantage of this!
As a beginner, you’ve not yet been shaped. You have the potential to shape yourself well, to develop quality movement patterns, and to form good habits right from the start.
For long term success, it’s crucial to be patient, and take the time required to learn each skill with quality.
In a letter to coaches, CrossFit founder Greg Glassman, explains:
“There is a compelling tendency among novices developing any skill or art, to quickly move past the fundamentals and on to more elaborate movements, skills, or techniques. This compulsion is the novice’s curse- the rush to originality and risk.”
“The Novice’s Curse manifests as weak fundamentals, and, ultimately, a marked lack of virtuosity and delayed mastery.”
So, how to avoid the novice’s curse and develop into a well-rounded athlete?
Here are some simple and effective strategies for optimizing skill acquisition:
- Define the goal, devise a plan to reach it, follow the plan, and adjust it accordingly along the way.
- Don’t overload and overwhelm yourself, pick one or two skills to work on. Work them until they’re developed to proficiency, then move on to the next goal.
- See it to Feel it…You must feel what’s happening in your body in order to change what’s happening with your body. Often, we must See it in order to feel it. So, watch yourself- take videos, compare and contrast them with videos of the pro’s, and get coaches feedback.
- Ask coaches for advice, that’s what we’re here for.
Utilize these strategies to get skilled! And you don’t need to be a beginner to take home the message. Many, many CrossFit veterans are still afflicted by the novice’s curse.
Be hasty and take the easy road now, get left in the dust later. Be prudent and take the high road now, become a skill master!