It happens all the time. I mention that I do CrossFit or that I go to a CrossFit gym and many times the response is about how dangerous it is or how it is ineffective compared to some other brand of working out. It gets old after awhile, especially when those responses are based on a lack of information.
First of all, any activity can be dangerous for you — especially if you do it wrong. Most people that tell me CrossFit is dangerous recite some anecdotal story about someone getting injured trying to do CrossFit. They usually never know the full details, but they know it was because of CrossFit.
The reality is that if done properly with proper instruction and coaching, CrossFit should be no more dangerous than other gym or physical activity. The gym I go to, Axistence Athletics, is a CrossFit gym that does it right. Their instructors are knowledgeable and well trained. They keep class sizes small and manageable.
During each class, they keep a watchful eye over everyone and make sure everyone is being safe. I have heard they saying “quality over quantity” more than once during my time there. They are very willing to help adapt to each person’s ability level for every class.
Do all CrossFit gyms do this? I don’t really know, but I suspect that they don’t and that may be the reason for injuries. If you push yourself to hard, your form is likely to suffer. When your form suffers, that is when injuries occur.
But what about other sports or physical activities? Can you name one that will not cause an injury if you do it incorrectly?
Last night I went to the “regular” gym right across the street from my work. There were three types of people working out. 1) People that were barely working out or working out ineffectively (Dude, if you can do 30 lat pull downs in a set, you may want to increase the weight a little!) 2) People that were doing dangerous stuff (Just because you are using a squat machine doesn’t mean you can’t hurt yourself!) and 3) People that are pushing it and using good form.
The dangerous people made me wonder, if they get hurt at a regular gym, do they go and tell everyone that the gym is dangerous and they should avoid the gym? I doubt it.
So no, I do not think CrossFit is dangerous, but I think you should be careful in how you pick your gym. I’ll write another post about how to pick a CrossFit gym soon.