What Does Golf Have to do with CrossFit?

Jun 25th, 2013

Category: Fitness

What Does Golf Have to do with CrossFit?

 Mini_Rough.jpg

A typical golf scenario for me, playing deep in the rough on the other side of the cart path, scrambling for dear life

So what does golf have to do with CrossFit?  Nothing at all.  And everything.

I’m not talking about training adaptations here, or energy systems, or anything like that.  It’s more philosophical.

I’ve been reading a great book (a big thank-you to CFOer Tom L for lending it to me) on Tiger Woods, written by his former coach, Hank Haney.  It’s called The Big Miss.  It’s really more of a behind-the-scenes look at Tiger Woods, the type of sacrifices he makes to be the best, and some of the personality traits that he possesses which enable him to be the best golfer he can be.  It also gets into a lot of the technical golf swing stuff I like, but that doesn’t make for good CFO blog fodder.  It has nothing to do with the personal headline-grabbing stuff that happened to Tiger off the course.  Haney keeps it pretty much (90%) about Tiger the golfer, via his relationship with him as his coach.  But this isn’t a book review.

There was one particular passage that really jumped out at me, and it relates to anyone who’s training with us, from pages 100-101:

To me, it was an example of a great performer doing what Geoff Colvin in his book Talent is Overrated calls "deliberate practice."  It’s the most difficult and highest level of practice because it requires painstaking focus on weaknesses.  A lot of players hit a lot of balls but focus only on their strengths.  The great improvers are willing to get uncomfortable and make the mental and physical effort to correct a flaw, which often involves difficult "opposite-oriented" remedial learning.  But that was Tiger in major-championship preparation mode. (Emphasis mine.)

CrossFit training is all about bringing up your weaknesses, whether it’s getting a strict version of a bodyweight movement (pull-up, handstand push-up, etc.), getting better at the Olympic lifts, improving your running, the list goes on and on.  

You should always be devoting some time in your training session to tackling those weaknesses, whether it’s before class, during our skill work pieces, or after class.  Yes, you want to get stronger (our Part A workouts) and get better stamina and endurance (our Part B workouts), but you also want to work to eliminate weaknesses.

If you have no idea what you should focus on, or would like to get a plan for attacking your weaknesses, ask one of your trainers.  They love coming up with ways to get you to improve.  And when working on those weaknesses, remember to pay attention to the second sentence in bold in the quote above.  Tackling weaknesses is going to involve difficult "opposite-oriented" remedial learning.