Clean up after yourself. If you used it, wipe it down and break it down.
Don’t drop the barbell when you’re stripping the plates. When you are cleaning up, save your coach from a brain aneurysm and strip down your barbell properly. This means you should lift the barbell and slide the plates off of it, and then place it back on the floor—don’t just let it crash to the ground. This is how they get damaged, and as your coach will tell you, they’re not cheap to replace.
If you’ve sweated on the equipment, bled on the equipment or cried on the equipment, wipe it down. Aside from being an obvious point of hygiene, it really isn’t a pleasant sensation to grab a wall ball that’s wetter than a newborn baby, or sit your ass down on an abmat that might as well have been placed against the bare skin of the person before you. Grab a paper towel and disinfectant, and take the 30 seconds to wipe down your equipment. Please do it—for everyone’s sake.
Don’t take other people’s equipment. When you’re setting up for a WOD, you try to set up your area with the gear in such a way to make everything easily accessible as you switch from movement to movement. And this can even extend to the pull-up bar—especially if you need to attach a band. So when someone takes your wall ball or steals your bar in the middle of a WOD, it can really mess up your groove. Remember, you aren’t the only one working out so please, be courteous.
5 minutes early is on time. On time is late. We get it; life sometimes gets in the way and there’s nothing you can do about it. If you’re going to be late a quick message to your coach can make a world of difference. Remember, the box isn’t a globo gym—you can’t turn up whenever you please. Classes run in a box, and people pay good money to attend them and get their hours’ worth of fitness and instruction. So be respectful to the others getting their WOD on and more so, be respectful to the coach of the hour who now has to re-state the workout for you because you were late.
Always Check in to class. This applies both to drop-ins and regular box attendees. If you are a member and you know that classes get pretty full, give your coach a heads up by signing up online before class. We also use Wodify to track each athlete’s progress so if you don’t sign in, we can’t track your growth.
Pay attention when the coach is giving instruction. It doesn’t matter if you’ve been doing CrossFit for 1 month or 5 years, it’s disrespectful to have your own private conversation or do your own thing when the coach is trying to give instruction to the class. You may know how to perform each movement off the top of your head, but not everyone does, so just be patient and quiet and let everyone get the full benefits of the coaches’ knowledge. Besides, you might learn something new about the lift that you would have otherwise missed!
Don’t touch weights, load bars, or grab equipment until your coach tells you to. The moments before the clock beeps 3, 2, 1 can be stressful, we get it, but those moments also allow others to ask questions, get clarification, hear direction, and watch movement standards. And if someone is clanging bars and walking around carrying a box, explanations can be missed and misunderstandings can happen. Be kind and respectful before the WOD starts and always listen to your coach's instructions.
Respect an athlete’s space. This is crucial for safety purposes, as well as the focus of the athlete. If someone is preparing for a major lift, don’t walk behind them, in front of them, or anywhere close to them. If they need to bail, the last thing a coach wants to see happen is the bar strike an athlete standing too close, or worse yet have an athlete fall back on to someone else’s equipment. Mind your environment.
Try to avoid ghost riding. Ghost riding refers to the phenomenon of dropping barbells, kettlebells and all manner of equipment from overhead, regardless of the situation or weight. This is important because dumbbells, kettlebells and barbells with thin plates can bounce when dropped from overhead and ricochet into yourself and other athletes. While it is very satisfying to hear the crash of the weights against the floor, try to reserve the sensation for the strictly heavy lifts.
Introduce yourself to newcomers. Hopefully your coach will take the initiative and announce a drop-in or a new member when you turn up for class. That’s the first step. But you should view it as your duty as a member of your box to make sure that the new athlete feels welcome in a new environment—especially if it’s their first taste of CrossFit.
Check your ego at the door. Just because you could lift a specific weight in high school, or you made state as the starting quarterback 3 times in the 80’s, doesn’t mean anything when you walk in the door. An ego can distract you from listening to instruction but it can also lead to injuring yourself and worse, injuring others.
Bring things to our attention. If you notice that equipment is broken, lights are out, there’s no toilet paper, bring it to our attention so we can do something about it. Remember, we are busy just like you and sometimes we miss things too.
Come to class. For newbies, make sure you’re staying consistent. For our veterans, don’t start thinking that it’s okay to just do your own thing whenever you want to. There’s a myriad of reasons we have class — for starters, you’re less likely to bias yourself towards the things you’re good at; you’ll get some competition; and no matter how experienced you are, you still need coaching and you can still stand to work on the basics. If you have extra things you’re working on, there are special times right before or after class to work on them. The gym is not an open gym except during the times posted on the schedule. Rule 18: Take ownership. Be responsible and respectful and take pride in your gym. Don’t let others get away with things that are bad for them or bad for the gym. Remind people to take their clothes with them and pick up their water bottles. If you see someone doing something that you’re pretty sure will hurt them, tell them to cut it out. We don’t care who it is! Safety first!
Leave the coaching to the coaches. While we appreciate your enthusiasm and willingness to lend a hand, please, for safety reasons always leave the coaching to us coaches. Again, sometimes we miss things and won’t see a missed lift, but if you do, point it out to us and we will take care if correcting form and make sure all standards are being met.
If you’re not the last one done, stay and cheer on the others until they’re done. The great thing about CrossFit is no one fights alone. If you’re the beast of the box or always the second to last one finishing, make sure you stay and cheer on your fellow members as they give it their all! Support is one of our core beliefs here at GRIT.
Mind your C’s and D’s. That’s children and dogs. We love our furry companions but unless they’re a service animal, all pets are to be left at home. And because both could be crushed by a #200 barbell dropped from overhead, terrible thought but a very real possibility, they must be in their place at all times. I’m not saying you can’t take your kids to the gym, but for safety reasons, if children cannot remain in the kid’s room you will be asked to leave and come another day. We love your kids and we’d love to see them stay uninjured for future WODs.
Classes take priority on space and equipment. We encourage you to come early and stay after class to work on mobility or other skills. Just make sure you don’t disrupt the classes and give up space and equipment if needed.
NO QUITTING!!! You can scream, cuss, cry, bleed, puke or even pass out… just don’t quit. The human body is capable of more than you can possibly comprehend; challenge it accordingly.