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My Crossfit Open '17 - The Box Owner

Mike Goddard is co owner of NWK Crossfit in Kent. He is an ex Rugby player and has a reputation as a no nonsense coach with his box members.


Mike - tell us about your first ever experience of the Crossfit Open.

My first open was a very nervy one for myself. I literally had just started Crossfit the week before so I had no clue what was going on or about what was about to happen. The first one i had on the cards was the 7Min AMRAP of burpees.

Now i saw that and thought to myself.... "yeah that is fine - let's go for 10 burpees a minute - that will be a good target and that should be within my range". Even with good strategy though I was still nervous but going into my first Open WOD but with my friends around me I thought that "this is going to be okay". . . . . .

It was the longest 7 mins of my life!!

Being a rugby player you know what time feels like due to the nature of the sport and how quickly things can get out of control. It sucked ! and i believe i got like 78 burpees the first time round and i just couldn't believe it. I hated it but felt i could do better.

My conclusion of the first Open was very mixed as i was new to it so to be honest it was an eye opener of where my fitness was currently rather than looking at others around me. I then knew i had a lot of work to do. But its an amazing physical challenge and it sets you up for the long term goal of the following year where you get to do it again and hopefully improve.


NWK Crossfit at their 800sq ft facility in 2013.


- What does the Open mean to you now as a Box Owner?

The opportunity to give our member's the chance to test themselves against other athlete's around the World is amazing. 

As a Box owner we look at bringing the community together for the Crossfit Open rather than solely focusing on the WODs that are about to go down. Sure, the fact they can come in and hit an open WOD is great and we put tactics in place to help work with everyone on what they might need to do in a workout and push them but after the Open - we use it a chance to celebrate together as a community.

We also have some competitive athletes who compete around the UK at comps and the Crossfit Open is a great time to sit down with them to analyse their performance allowing me to coach in an in depth level on an 1-2-1 basis.


- Logistically what are you hoping not to see this year? (How are you dealing with the dumbbell situation).

We are capable of providing most scenario's at NWK Crossfit but there our a few key elements might kill us off and so we try to be aware of these scenario's early - For example to dumbbell situation.

I don't think a lot of Boxes will have access to that many dumbells and even though they are great tools for fitness, we just don't have the extra capital for me to say "okay buy 10 sets of everything". Buying a piece of equipment for 1 WOD seems to be a bit harsh. We will be using KB's and taping on extra weight as we have a good amount of KB's.

I am not going to worry too much about the situation though. If i knew i had regional athletes in my box, then of course i would buy some. But i don't base the Open around my competitive athletes it is more for the social side of it all. If Assault bikes come up we could struggle. We have plenty of rowers but i think a lot of boxes are in similar scenario's.


- Any Castro predictions for the Crossfit Open 2017?

Castro predictions are as bad as the dumbbell scenario, you just don't expect certain things. You can guess common patterns such as time-scales and style's of WOD as i have done in previous Open's but who know's !! . . . we might all be doing one legged pistols on a KB's very soon.


- Any advice for Crossfit Open Newbie's?

First timers - need to focus on your self. You have to realise that is not about performance, its testing your work capacity. Chin up, it rocks around every year.


NWK now in their 2,500sq ft facility hosting the Open 2016.

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