Re: CrossFit vs. GymJones
"You are exactly correct in your summation, wine sodden or not, and overly generous in your praise of me. For you and the rest of this fine community I offer my motivation and my deepest gratitude.
When Mark’s weakness was publicly revealed at our seminar I ordered cameras turned off to mitigate his obvious embarrassment.
When he couldn’t get a muscle-up I bought him rings and coached him over the phone to success.
When deployed soldiers told me that he’d hidden from them the origins of “his new program” I actually laughed – then worried.
When he gave me his two books and later called saying that he was embarrassed at their fitness content and wished he’d not presented them, I praised him as a pioneer.
When he asked that his affiliation be removed from the site because it was bringing him too much fan mail, I didn’t quite believe the rationale. When he asked that it be reposted on launch of his new site, I was pleased. When I found out that the down time coincided with his appearance at a military installation presenting Gym Jones as a substantial (though unsubstantiable) improvement on CrossFit, I had a moment of clarity. When he again asked that it be removed because of my issues with a mutual friend, I listened for the other shoe to drop. It dropped months later with the release of trailers from his Hollywood project.
When the Gym Jones manual, which Mr. Twight naively thought I’d never see, was revealed to be built entirely from CrossFit concepts for which he took ownership, even liberally, eerily, infused with my idiom and syntax, I was enraged but ultimately decided that the market judgment would be more fruitful than legal remedies. Markets are fooled but transiently by affronts like this. (Our law firm, Wilson Sonsini Goodrich Rossati which represents Google, Intel, Sun, Palm, Apple, Hewlitt Packard, Knight Ridder and, of course, CrossFit offered that we’d surely exceed Mark’s net worth in pretrial motions, and that a judgment would likely never be recovered, offered nonetheless to subsidize our efforts. Say what you want about lawyers; ours, and their generosity, are vital to this program's existence.)
That the Gym Jones manual claimed my contributions to the concepts therein were taken from other coaches, and that my sole contribution was clever Internet marketing, whereas his were the fruits of 20 years of research caused me worry for our affiliates and my anticipation of more and worse to come, but I remained committed to, as one of my best friends puts it, “the high road”. Against my instincts and nature, I must add.
But this week, Mr. Twight presented himself to an elite military audience and offered that he’d been ripped off by CrossFit and that CrossFit was injuring people. For the record, he was very careful not to mention CrossFit by name but made it abundantly clear to whom he has referring.
The injury part is hard to take, especially from a renegade affiliate whose most salient feature among all affiliates was a general, even reckless, disregard for mechanics with a concomitant and hypocritical lip-service to standards. (Check out what my crew calls the “Blair Witch CrossFit Videos” on Gym Jones site).
But, here’s what has forced my hand. We currently have scores if not hundred of soldiers who have staked careers and reputations, even their lives, on implementation of CrossFit within their ranks. They come from all branches of U.S. military and Special Operation Forces, and several foreign countries. These brave men and women have committed themselves professionally to CrossFit because of their firm belief in CrossFit’s potential for keeping them alive, enabling the successful completion of their objective, and extending the length of their operational careers. They see the specter of injury that Mr. Twight raises as a dishonest and dangerous ploy for market share. They know, as does Mr. Twight, that CrossFit has, in repeated tests, exceeded the requirements for safety, efficacy, and efficiency offered by current mil/LEO PT.
The Gym Jones method is sound though not up to CrossFit standards for safety, efficiency, or efficacy. Gym Jones represents a substantial improvement over traditional mil/LEO PT. Mark Twight’s attacks on CrossFit risk the lives of soldiers and police. This is more than the theft of my intellectual property about which I’ve long remained silent."
Comment #85 - Posted by: Coach at March 23, 2007 7:49 AM