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Old 12-11-2006, 06:15 AM   #1
James Evans
Senior Member
Join Date: Nov 2006
Location: London
Posts: 537
Default Mike Boyle - On the money or off the podium?

I read with interest, and a slightly raised left eyebrow, the recent discussion on the CrossFit board regarding Mike Boyle's apparent aversion to high rep Olympic lifts.

Here's the flavour:

One common criticism leveled at CrossFit is that we engage in the "dangerous" activity of "high rep Olympic weightlifting."

Very recently Mike Boyle of "Mike Boyle Strength and Conditioning " offered this objection when asked about CrossFit at a SOCOM sponsored "Special Op's Medical Conference."

And all were invited to post their opinions to comments.

Now I've read a lot of what Boyle has to say and I think it is very easy to misunderstand him, if you only digest the soundbites.

I think the point is that Boyle primarily trains athletes. He has formulated his theories over a number of years. He does what he does because he thinks that it is inherently safe.

One of the things I notice about those who post to comments and those who post to the message board is the contrast in their depth of knowledge. Many people do CrossFit and it really works for them. And they post to comments to pay tribute to this fact. Good. But there is a world outside.

Sometimes people just get it wrong. One poster says Boyle has a problem with front squats. No, he has a problem with back squats. But that post will stick in many reader's minds.

Furthermore, I'm not a soldier, I'm not a cop. I've got different goals. Elements of CrossFit work for me. Others don't. Elements of Functional Training are just pointless to me. I don't have the time or the inclination.

I don't want to start another Boyle-CrossFit slagging match, I'm just interested in a discussion about his theories and methods, many of which I believe are inherently sound.

Just to express my own position:
  • If something works for you, do it
  • If something doesn't, drop it
  • If something injures you, either you're doing it wrong (therefore learn to do it properly) or it's not for you, either currently or at any stage in your training
  • Just because someone else doesn't agree with what you are doing does not mean that they have no valid opinions. You can still learn from them.

All very simplistic I know but the theories are the simple bits, it's the training that works you over.
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