Coach Fritz talking to his class about a movement.

Coaches, Your Words Are Powerful
Written by Kirsten Ahrendt

If you are a CrossFit coach or a coach of all kinds: Words are powerful. As a coach, your athletes take everything you say to heart. With that power comes responsibility to be careful in the words you choose to use, and the words you choose to avoid.. 

Word we use versus words rarely use at Invictus 

Here’s a few words that we rarely use at Invictus:

  • Prescribed (Rx)
  • Scaled
  • Modified
  • The whiteboard says you should…
  • Score

Here’s some words we use heavily:

  • Today’s intention is
  • This should feel like
  • Customize
  • Identify your focus for today
  • The whiteboard suggests
  • Reflect

Your words matter as a CrossFit Coach

Coaches, do your members feel beholden to the whiteboard agenda? Do they feel limited between  “big dawg” and “unworthy puppy dawg” choices? Do you feel like you’re stuck drawing a fitness picture in black and white when you could be creating psychedelic-rainbow-sparkly experiences of fitness for everyone in your class if they would just move beyond their ego and listen to your coaching suggestions? 

Run diagnostics on your language and tone. Coaches, when you speak, your words impact each member uniquely; What they “hear” may not be what you “said” (or what you intended). Coaches, consider the following:

  • How many statements do you make VS how many questions do you ask?
  • How often do you help clients align movement with their individual short-term and long term goals?
  • What words are you using that imply a demand, limited choice?
  • How do you create invitations for your clients to build agency in their fitness pursuits within the structure of a class?
  • What words are written on the whiteboard

Invictus University 

Learn more about building a culture of customization and individualizing group fitness classes in our coaches development course – Invictus University.

Next Cohort start date: January 15th – runs for 5 weeks.

Learn more at:

Invictus University January 15th Cohort

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