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Old 06-08-2011, 07:52 PM   #11
Eric Montgomery
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Re: Testing Fitness and Removing Judging Problems

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Originally Posted by Justin McCallon View Post
Collisions are part of broad modal domains. There are a lot of "real life" activities that involve using one's weight and/or absorbing force. There are also a lot of sports. Collisions are most certainly not part of every modal domain and I never implied that they were.


Yes, yes I know. Height is an advantage in just about every "real life" sport that is not decided by judges.

My point wasn't really that 250+ lb people are the most fit people in the world. My point was that 5'7 people do not have higher levels of fitness than 6'2 people, despite the fact that CF would seem to suggest they do. That in mind, in most sports that do involve broad time and modal domains, muscular people fare better than emaciated people.

Again, make everyone move the same distance and you are testing actual Work.
You keep making that assumption and it's still false unless you account for the different height/weight/anthropometries of individuals. There's no readily available way to come up with actual work or power output, aside from simply measuring wattage outputs on a C2 or something similar. Even if someone is the same height and weight as me, there's no guarantee that we both performed the same amount of work even if we both do 50 squats then 50 pullups in the same amount of time. How do you propose standardizing measurements for work? Even with some of the things you listed as being "good" workouts, there's still going to be variations. At 200lbs, I'm doing 33% more work climbing a rope to a given height than a 150lb man is. Same deal for something like the sandbag hill sprint. We can go around and around on this topic, but there's no way to simplify things any further than to say "complete this given task as quickly as possible." You don't get a mulligan if that particular task doesn't suit your body type.

Height was definitely an advantage in a few Games workouts last year--the most obvious examples were scaling the wall on the sandbag haul and doing the wall burpees on the final workout. Two years ago, bigger guys tended to snatch more weight than smaller guys, and they made it further in the deadlift ladder. And despite your opinion, having seen a few hundred people climb ropes in my affiliate and on the Marine Corps obstacle course, being tall is a huge advantage for getting up a rope in an efficient manner.
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Old 06-08-2011, 08:06 PM   #12
Katherine Derbyshire
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Re: Testing Fitness and Removing Judging Problems

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Originally Posted by Justin McCallon View Post
My point wasn't really that 250+ lb people are the most fit people in the world. My point was that 5'7 people do not have higher levels of fitness than 6'2 people, despite the fact that CF would seem to suggest they do.
And my point was that the opposite isn't true, either.

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Old 06-08-2011, 10:13 PM   #13
Justin McCallon
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Re: Testing Fitness and Removing Judging Problems

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Originally Posted by Eric Montgomery View Post
You keep making that assumption and it's still false unless you account for the different height/weight/anthropometries of individuals. There's no readily available way to come up with actual work or power output, aside from simply measuring wattage outputs on a C2 or something similar. Even if someone is the same height and weight as me, there's no guarantee that we both performed the same amount of work even if we both do 50 squats then 50 pullups in the same amount of time. How do you propose standardizing measurements for work? Even with some of the things you listed as being "good" workouts, there's still going to be variations. At 200lbs, I'm doing 33% more work climbing a rope to a given height than a 150lb man is. Same deal for something like the sandbag hill sprint. We can go around and around on this topic, but there's no way to simplify things any further than to say "complete this given task as quickly as possible." You don't get a mulligan if that particular task doesn't suit your body type.

Height was definitely an advantage in a few Games workouts last year--the most obvious examples were scaling the wall on the sandbag haul and doing the wall burpees on the final workout. Two years ago, bigger guys tended to snatch more weight than smaller guys, and they made it further in the deadlift ladder. And despite your opinion, having seen a few hundred people climb ropes in my affiliate and on the Marine Corps obstacle course, being tall is a huge advantage for getting up a rope in an efficient manner.
I addressed that already. I realize that individual weights of people affect work and I addressed that in the original post. But, in every real life event, you must move your own weight. You don't get extra credit for being heavier. Similarly, in real life, you don't get to move a shorter distance if you're short. This kinda goes back to the definition of broad fitness as "median level of ability to do any task." You must be able to move yourself, and move external objects, across equal distances.
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Old 06-09-2011, 08:14 AM   #14
Sean Dunston
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Re: Testing Fitness and Removing Judging Problems

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Originally Posted by Christopher G. Woods View Post
I think the big problem that is being encountered with judging in CrossFit competitions is a classic case of "too many cooks in the kitchen".

In every other sport or competition (at least any I can think of), all athletes or competitors are judged or officiated by the same set(s) of eyes. In team sports, both teams are subject to the same group of referees or umpires; in gymnastics, weightlifting, diving, etc., all competitors are subject to the same judges. There might be some variance in the enforcement of standards between different groups of officials, but the variance will be consistent within a single event since there is only one group of officials for that match, game, etc.

In CrossFit competitions, if you have 10 athletes or teams competing in a single heat, then you have 10 different judges or groups of judges, and 10 possible variances in the enforcement of standards. It's like playing in a baseball game where you have a different umpire calling balls and strikes for each team, or even each batter.

Obviously, the sport of CrossFit is still very young, and we should expect these kinds of problems. Inconsistency in enforcement of standards has been an issue, at least to some extent, in every CrossFit competition that I've been in, dating back to the 2008 Games.

There are two major steps that need to be taken to resolve this situation. The first is the institutionalization of movement standards for all of the major movements used in CrossFit competitions. It seems like every year there is some new or different variation on the standards of almost every movement. This is confusing to athletes and judges alike. The second step is the training and certification of officials for sanctioned events. This standard can be taken for granted in every other sport, that everyone knows the rules and that the officials know well and clear how to enforce them properly. Until something of this nature is put in place, we will continue to see these problems in CrossFit competitions.
Chris nailed it here.
In the past few years, I've competed in CF events and sanctioned powerlifting events (USAPL - which has the strictest standards, especially for the squat, of all major powerlifting federations). When I was first competing in CF events - Albany CF Challenge and the Mid-Atlantic Hopper Challenge (both in 2008) - there was a serious shortage of judges. I doubt many of the judges at either event had a L1 cert - let alone were actively training/coaching other people at CF boxes. Luckily, that has changed over time, and all judges (and most volunteers) these days at major CF competitions are at least L1 certified, and have been training others for significant periods of time.

That said, coaching in the box, and cuing/correcting movement of your own athletes is one thing. Judging at CF competitions is another thing. When I first judged a major CF competition - 2009 Regionals in Virginia Beach, we acted both as judges and motivators: urging the athletes on, screaming out cues, counting reps and calling bad reps. The 2010 Sectionals in Fairfax switched to more judging, less cuing. The 2011 Open was stricter - almost no cuing, only calling out bad reps and why. The 2011 Regionals were the strictest so far. We were told point blank to remove all emotion, be totally matter of fact, count reps, and loudly and clearly proclaim no reps verbally and with a visual cue (of waving our arms) and stating the reason why a no rep was issued.

That leads me back to the USAPL. I have both been a competitor, and I have trained/coached athletes and brought them to competitions. At the competitions there are 3 judges present for each lift. They tend to stay the same though each flight of lifters. There are also 2 levels of judges - those with standard qualifications to judge athletes up to the state record level lifts, and those with a second level of qualifications who are brought in when an athlete will be attempting a National record lift. They will be rotated in, and others will go out on such lifts. There is a shortage of these highly trained judges, and that sometimes delays the competition if one has gone off to the bathroom, or can't be found for a while, etc.

Even though I have spent the past 3 CF Games seasons judging CF events, because I love the sport, I would be willing to attend a CF Games Judging Cert if it were offered. Frankly, I think I'm a pretty good judge already. However, I know that this is where the sport of CF should be going, and NEEDS to go, for continued legitimacy.

My $.02
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Old 06-09-2011, 08:23 AM   #15
Sean Dunston
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Re: Testing Fitness and Removing Judging Problems

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Originally Posted by Justin McCallon View Post
On rope climbs, both tall and short people must move the same distance. Short people have shorter pulls and therefore can do them faster to make up the difference. The bottom line is that in a rope climb, the same work is done. It's not really about unfairness. It's about actually testing Work.
There is no way the above statement(s) can be accurate.
If you use the 5'3" and 6'3" example from your previous comparison of athlete sizes, and both athletes start from a standing position, the taller athlete already has 1' less to climb than the shorter athlete, and that does not even account for what would assuredly be longer limb sizes by the taller person, which would further increase that person's advantage. This cannot be "fixed" even if both athletes start in a seated position, because the taller athlete will still be able to begin "higher" up the rope than the shorter athlete.
Additionally, your statement that, "Short people have shorter pulls and therefore can do them faster to make up the difference," is not grounded in fact. If the shorter athlete has to do more pulls to go the same distance, there is just as great a chance that those additional pulls will burn out the shorter athlete, as there is a chance that he will get those reps done more quickly than the taller athlete.
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Old 06-11-2011, 09:03 PM   #16
Jeff Binek
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Re: Testing Fitness and Removing Judging Problems

We have some judges that don't even know who Graham, Rich, Heather Bergeron, or Dan Bailey are...granted that doesn't necessarily mean they can't judge to standard...but how are you going to claim to 'know your sport' if you don't know these athletes? I mean you would have to actively avoid any website (mainsite, journal, CF Games, SICFIT, etc.) to NOT know who these athletes are. And do we really want those types of people judging? Granted I am a huge fan of this sport, and follow it closely so that is maybe I am making it too big of a deal? I dunno...I just thought that was like an NBA Ref going into the Eastern Conference Finals and going up to Michael Jordan and being like, 'hey who are you? Oh, ok...no I've never seen a pro basketball game, or played in a game, or seen/heard of you before...but they told me the rules and sometimes I play horse, it should be fine.'

Also - I think the Central East on another note has gone off incredibly smoothly. The timeline has been kept, transitions have been smooth, equipment maintained, athletes/staff/judges taken care of by Reebok and sponsors...really a great event, I have been pleasantly impressed all around by the professionalism and growth of the sport in a positive light.
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Old 06-11-2011, 09:08 PM   #17
Eric Montgomery
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Re: Testing Fitness and Removing Judging Problems

Actually I'd be a lot more comfortable with judges who didn't know any of the competitors as opposed to having star-struck judges who (whether intentionally or subconsciously) allowed substandard reps to count because of who was doing them.

NBA refs are a bad example, since it's been widely known for decades that the Jordans and Kobes and LeBrons play by a different set of rules than the mere mortals.
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Old 06-11-2011, 09:15 PM   #18
Jeff Binek
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Re: Testing Fitness and Removing Judging Problems

maybe true - it has tended to work out in my experience that the better the athlete the more they follow the standard. After watching Rich (as a spectator) in a few team events - he really isn't anything crazy impressive, he is just freaking consistent. Never a no rep, has a smoothness and rhythm about him that just never stops. But he is such an impressive athlete that he never is in question with the standard. Now some of the top athletes definitely were with the DL, KB, and OHS mainly and you can see that in the standings (places like 3, 2, 6, 24), they are all problems with speed (hip extension and laziness with the bell). I don't know how much these athletes 'star strike' people...

By crazy impressive - I mean Dan Bailey - THAT dude is unbelievably fast and strong for his size. He finished his 1k (in a jog) sub 3mins - effectively screwing the rest of his heat who came in way too fast and blew the rest of the workout - went UB on his HSPU then rowed close to a 3:30 1k - then the DL/BJ event I was judging so I didn't see him, but all I heard was the announcer (DAN BAILEY UNBROKEN ONTO THE BOX, DAN BAILEY ONTO THE DEADLIFTS, OH MY GOD DAN BAILEY ONTO THE BOX JUMPS) it was like, blink and you missed it. My dude killed it and Dan was done before he got to his 15 set of box jumps. **But got a lot of No Reps on the 100's, maybe hurting my argument**
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Old 06-11-2011, 09:42 PM   #19
Pär Larsson
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Re: Testing Fitness and Removing Judging Problems

There is no "Easy Way" to test fitness and remove judging problems.

That said, there's always room for improvement.

I'd like to see HQ pay attention to the height/weight data from http://xfit2011.blogspot.com/ SFW

...and then continually try to provide workouts and events that give opportunities for all regular body types to shine. CF competitions shouldn't just be about the men who have the ideal 5'8" 185# bodies (and female eq.).

Some of the more outlandishly gymnastics-specialist-biased workouts and movements should be de-emphasized imho, like the ring muscle up, HSPU's etc.

I'd also like to see more obstacle course workouts, more medium-distance load bearing, swimming and less extreme-weight stuff that puts the smaller people at a very very severe disadvantage.

But the current format isn't all that bad. Other than a lack of running, maybe. And swimming.
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Old 06-12-2011, 12:02 AM   #20
Katherine Derbyshire
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Re: Testing Fitness and Removing Judging Problems

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...and then continually try to provide workouts and events that give opportunities for all regular body types to shine. CF competitions shouldn't just be about the men who have the ideal 5'8" 185# bodies (and female eq.).
I think that's the nature of the beast. Emphasize heavier workouts, and you favor the big guys but punish the little guys. Emphasize bodyweight, and you do the opposite. Leaving the average guys doing okay at both.

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