Team Survivor Fitness Classes

I’ve been working out at CrossFit North for two years now. After one or two of Dave’s assistant trainers moved away, he asked me if I would help out with the Team Survivor fitness classes. They meet once a week for eight weeks at a time and consist of 20 to 25 women cancer survivors. Dave asked me about this back in July or August. At first I didn’t think I was competent and didn’t want to take on one more weekly scheduled activity, but I soon realized what a great opportunity it is to learn something new. Who knows, I might love training people. I should gravitate toward it because in the past I’ve chosen jobs in tutoring, technical writing, and now the helpdesk, all related to communication for the purpose of training.
Nancy gave me an interesting book on animal training to read, “Don’t Shoot the Dog,” which sounds inappropriate to training people, but is applicable because it goes into the psychology behind the ways people communicate. This is so interesting for its own sake that it didn’t matter that only part of the book’s focus was on humans. Training and learning are inherently interesting. Coincidentally, I had been starting to visualize teaching guitar some day (when my skills are more well rounded) when this Team Survivor opportunity arose.
The class started last night with training on an effective and healthy squat. It is so basic, but most people can’t do it well. Hip function and hamstrings and back flexibility are impaired by sedentary jobs and lack of exercise, so we squat balanced on our toes to avoid folding the hips and arching the back. Dave starts all training with the proper squat–weight on the heels, back upright. It takes a while (months, for me) to do it adequately, let alone comfortably and naturally. Last night Dave seemed very pleased to see that many of the women, most of whom had taken a similar class last year, either had a decent squat or improved quickly.
I found that the movements of 20 people who are exercising go by so fast that it’s hard to offer any tips at all. Often, by the time I had made up my mind to say something and had gotten close enough to say it, it was too late. Fortunately for me the women were all extremely nice and even seemed happy to have me there trying to help. I know they really like and trust Dave, so I guess whoever he chooses to help is all right with them. Anyway it made me feel good.
A few other exercises were covered during the hour and I felt optimistic that I’ll be more able to help as time goes on. I’m really looking forward to this learning process.

One thought on “Team Survivor Fitness Classes”

  1. i hope you’ll write more about your teaching experience. teaching movement is something i’m just starting and really enjoying but feeling very green at. it’s such a challenge to figure out what people are doing wrong when it goes by so fast. i also find myself unsure what to do when i correct someone who can’t apply the correction right away. i wish i could always say “better!” but i don’t want to lie, and “keep trying” feels like such a disappointing sort of encouragement. plus, i always have to wonder whether i could word the correction better so the person could make sense of it and apply it or whether it’s just something that the person’s brain is just not able to communicate to their body yet.

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