January 22

A Physiotherapist’s thoughts on CrossFit


Just over one year ago, I opened Torque Physiotherapy inside Adapt

I won’t lie – I had never tried CrossFit, and initially, I had little inclination to do so, despite an extensive sporting background ranging from distance running, and triathlon to gymnastics, and bodybuilding.

Every ounce of my regimented Runner’s mentality pleaded against it (after all, thick thighs are hardly conducive to distance running) while my physio brain, staunchly geared towards controlled movement, technique focus and impeccably segmented training regimes, viewed CrossFit as the fastest, most efficient way to injure shoulders, backs and knees. It defied everything I had ever learned about energy systems, periodised training, injury prevention and performance.

Don’t get me wrong, I lifted heavy weights and did my box jumps -and hurdle jumps as stand-alone sessions; but the idea of combining the two in the same workout, along with running and gymnastics skills thrown in? For as many rounds as possible in 12 minutes??? How was this possible?

But, as I stood on the sidelines, watching class after class, contemplating this CrossFit “thing” I realised that contrary to my expectations injuries were scarce. In fact, I began to see how efficiently people moved. How hard they were working. How coaching input would guide movement scaling options specific to each person. And importantly – how people gelled together and the apparent sense of teamwork and comradery, despite most workouts being individual in nature.

And then I heard a little whisper. “Go on, try it – what have you got to lose?”

I proudly ignored it. I was a runner. I ran in straight lines, on a straight road, and I ran fast. It was part of my identity, left over from years of elite level competition (granted I had the physique of a greyhound for years). BUT I was clinging on to something which was pretty much past-tense due to injury setbacks over the years. The whisper got stronger, and so did the urge to try something different, to test myself physically, and to become a part of the Adapt community.


Fast forward to July 2018 and I finally signed up for Adapt’s Fundamentals Program with Ben as my Coach. I knew I’d get a lot out of it physically through fine-tuning technique work and gymnastics skills under Ben’s guidance, but I didn’t quite expect that my perspective on so many other aspects of my life would change.

Over four weeks, I did three sessions per week with Ben. Every single session I walked away feeling like I’d not only learned new physical skills, but I had started to shift my mindset on training structure, nutrition, the importance of rest days and work-life balance.

My thoughts on CrossFit were transformed on every level. I was hungry to keep learning!

With Ben’s coaching, I went from a mediocre not-quite-full-range back squat, to a badass full-depth squat; I learned how to do Olympic Lifting; how to hold a decent handstand; how to tame my ego when I just wanted to beat the clock; and probably most importantly (and most difficult) for me – how to let go of a session when my body needed to rest.

Doing Fundamentals was the passport to CrossFit. But it is so much more than that. Adapt is so much more than that.

Something happens when you enter this place – you learn a lot about yourself physically and mentally, and you will get stronger, more agile and you will perform better. But it is also a space where, if you invest as much as the coaches are willing to invest in you – I can guarantee you will discover more potential than you thought possible within yourself, your relationships and your personal and professional goals.

~ Tash Cole, Torque Physiotherapy


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