The old school CrossFitters out there will remember when mainsite (crossfit.com) was the source of all CrossFit workouts. You checked mainsite, you gasped at the workout and then figured out how you could do it, or a variation of it, and you cracked on. You see mainsite programmed for the high-level athlete. They regularly programmed heavy weights, complex gymnastics and disgustingly intense metabolic conditioning pieces – most of which were beyond the reach of us mortals. However, you weren’t left searching elsewhere for a more suitable workout – you scaled it. If you couldn’t thruster 60kg you went lighter. If you couldn’t do muscle ups you did 5 pull ups and 5 dips instead. Was the workout the same? No. Was the stimulus and therefore the result the same? Yes!
We often get too concerned with comparing our scores to our class mates and following the programmed workout verbatim despite our own abilities or restrictions. Scaling is there to provide each and every athlete the means to get the designed response from a workout, not to differentiate people based on their capability. Scaling can be seen as a little taboo but in reality, it should be praised. Knowing your own abilities and working inside safe parameters is smart training at its best. This doesn’t mean you have to live in your comfort zone but it does mean you don’t have to completely burst out of it!
Scaling can take many forms: the movement, the load, the volume or the time frame. We can adjust each and every one of these factors to tailor a general workout to your individual needs. This allows us to work with different abilities, injuries and requirements all while being part of our awesome community!
Scaling a workout won’t change its effect on your fitness. Trying to go RX and missing the stimulus might. A large part of coaching is scaling so when in doubt speak to a coach and we will guide you accordingly!