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Running a CrossFit Facility Tips and guidance on how to open and operate a CrossFit gym.

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Old 07-30-2012, 12:50 PM   #1
Stephanie Hoaglund
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ADVICE NEEDED: Kids and the Box

Want to get some ideas/advice on how to handle --

Our box is getting big with +/- 200 members and what is happening is parents are bringing their kids to the box to 'hang out' while they workout. We have a small daycare room for kids 6y and under only that has AC.

What is happening is the kids are running around the box, not sitting in the waiting area, running all over the place outside --getting in the way of some of our classes as they are running. The coaches are having to police the floor instead of focusing on the class. They want to hang out in the AC toddler room and go in there when we aren't looking and make a huge mess.

We don't want to say no kids because we have a lot of single parents who have no option but curious how kids are handled in other boxes. What are the policies, how does the staff handle it when kids are running all over the place, and trying to get on the rings, lift the plates etc...

We do offer CF Kids 2x a week and on Saturday early mornings to accommodate kids and their interest but this time independent of that class time.
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Old 07-30-2012, 01:04 PM   #2
Katherine Derbyshire
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Re: ADVICE NEEDED: Kids and the Box

Unsupervised kids don't belong on the floor while the adults are working out. Period. It's dangerous for everyone concerned.

So either you need to provide adequate supervision or you need to hold the parents responsible.

But if you don't do something either you'll lose members or someone will get hurt. Or both.

The box where I train had a similar problem, which was ultimately resolved by enforcing a "no kids" policy. FWIW, I think most members -- including parents -- were relieved.

Katherine
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Old 07-30-2012, 01:16 PM   #3
Chris Sinagoga
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Re: ADVICE NEEDED: Kids and the Box

Would it be possible to ask an athlete or two to supervise for that session and in return, waive their monthly fee?
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Old 07-30-2012, 01:17 PM   #4
Jamie Gowens
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Re: ADVICE NEEDED: Kids and the Box

Pull the parent(s) of the kid(s) out of the WOD, and tell them to wrangle.
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Old 07-30-2012, 01:27 PM   #5
Sean Dunston
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Re: ADVICE NEEDED: Kids and the Box

Quote:
Originally Posted by Stephanie Hoaglund View Post
What is happening is the kids are running around the box, not sitting in the waiting area, running all over the place outside --getting in the way of some of our classes as they are running. The coaches are having to police the floor instead of focusing on the class. They want to hang out in the AC toddler room and go in there when we aren't looking and make a huge mess.

We don't want to say no kids because we have a lot of single parents who have no option but curious how kids are handled in other boxes. What are the policies, how does the staff handle it when kids are running all over the place, and trying to get on the rings, lift the plates etc...
You need to take control - and do it ASAP. Even though you may not want to alienate single parents, they have to know that when their safety and the safety of the children is at stake, rules (YOUR RULES) must be obeyed.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Katherine Derbyshire View Post
Unsupervised kids don't belong on the floor while the adults are working out. Period. It's dangerous for everyone concerned.
Totally agree. During a normal WOD, there are simply way too many moving parts to have kids cruising around the gym floor. That is liability waiting to happen.

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Originally Posted by Chris Sinagoga View Post
Would it be possible to ask an athlete or two to supervise for that session and in return, waive their monthly fee?
I'd be careful with this - check your insurance policy. The one I was reading recently stated that if anyone is supervising children, he/she needs to have passed a criminal background check.
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Old 07-30-2012, 01:42 PM   #6
Brian Androsian
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Re: ADVICE NEEDED: Kids and the Box

You say you don't want to chase away single parents, but I wonder how many people are leaving or looking elsewhere where they won't have to deal with other people's kids running around.
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Old 07-30-2012, 01:43 PM   #7
Jeff Martin
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Re: ADVICE NEEDED: Kids and the Box

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Originally Posted by Jamie Gowens View Post
Pull the parent(s) of the kid(s) out of the WOD, and tell them to wrangle.

This stops it, almost immediately. Announce to the parents in a no-nonsense way that this is how you are going to handle it, give them a minute to explain to their kids that they do not want their PR Fran interrupted by bad behavior and then start the class as usual.

Make it part of your speech at the start of class. Then of course, implement and be consistent.
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Old 07-30-2012, 01:59 PM   #8
Christopher R Garcia
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Re: ADVICE NEEDED: Kids and the Box

brian has a great point. i would make the rules clear like everyone else said. but one thing i have seen work is that all the parents take a turn at watching the kids. have them set a schedule and cycle through whose responsibility it is for what day. the parent that watched the kids just has to hop in another class that someone else is covering if they want to work out that day.
no cost, minimal intrusion on work outs and parents are taking care of the problem rather then you.
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Old 07-31-2012, 01:59 PM   #9
Kyle McHale
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Re: ADVICE NEEDED: Kids and the Box

as everyone pretty much stated seems like a law suit waiting to happen to me. sucks to have to worry about that in this day in age. i would say you gotta throw down the hammer and protect yourself. no more kids
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Old 07-31-2012, 02:18 PM   #10
Jason Wallis
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Re: ADVICE NEEDED: Kids and the Box

Have a clear policy that everyone understands. Deal with offenders. Provide something to keep kids occupied; perhaps a set of rings, a low pullup bar, and a couple of light kettlebells in a separate area from which they can see the main gym floor (and parents can see them).
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