Next Level Coaching

Pat Barber Coaching

Do you have the coaching experience to consider yourself a “good” or skilled coach? Here’s a little visualization to try if you’re curious. Remember — this is just one way of looking at it. Certainly not the only way.

Connect Immediately

Pat Barber Coaching

When you’re coaching, and someone walks through the door, do you immediately acknowledge them?

Does Your Nutrition Coaching Push One “Right” Way?

Pat Barber Coaching, Nutrition

There’s not a single nutrition program that works for every person. There can be a lot of shame around this topic. And a lot expectation or demands that are inaccessible to people for various reasons (location, income, family dynamics, etc.).

Is your nutrition program preaching that there’s only one right way to eat? It might be time to step back and reflect.

When a Member Says “The Warmup is Too Long”

Pat Barber Coaching, GPP

Sometimes members don’t understand the intention behind the warmup section of a GPP program. They can get bored. This video tackles delivery of the warmup, education, purpose and how to have conversations with members about the warmup and GPP (which is especially important when a facility has transitioned from a strength + metcon model).

Additional Reading:

Don’t Waste the Warmup — The CrossFit Journal

When a Member Says “The Workouts Are Not Intense Enough”

Pat Barber Coaching, GPP

This is for coaches and trainers who are hearing things like “the workouts are not intense or hard enough” or “the workouts are too short.”

Coaches of WUWO or other GPP programs, we go into much more detail about why we’re a GPP program and how to handle common complaints (when switching from a strength + metcon model) on this page: Why We’re a Non-Biased Program

We also have an intensity test you can use when people complain that the workouts are too easy.

We hope these resources lead to more productive conversations with your members!

Coaching Challenge: Connecting = Trusting

Pat Barber Coaching, Coaching Challenges

“I define connection as the energy that exists between people when they feel seen, heard and valued; when they can give and receive without judgment; and when they derive sustenance and strength from the relationship… Connection is why we’re here; it is what gives purpose and meaning to our lives.”

Brené Brown knows her stuff.

And every coach knows that we’re in the business of relationships.

We cannot push people to their thresholds and force them outside their comfort zones if they don’t trust us.

Trust requires connection, relationship.

So the first order of business is to connect with people more often.

Start with 3-5 people each class if you want to keep things simple.

Ask yourself, how can I make these 3-5 people feel more seen, heard and valued?

It’s a natural, in the moment thing.

Be where your feet are.

Fully engage in conversation.

Pause, take an extra moment to make eye contact and really coach someone.

Ask more questions. Listen carefully. With an open mind and heart.

Let them be vulnerable. Angry. Confused. Shy. Loud. Human.

Notice how truly connecting with someone makes you feel in your body.

How could connecting more make you feel differently about being a coach?

Coaching Challenge: Greet Your Clients

Pat Barber Coaching, Coaching Challenges

Every single time a client walks into your gym, you need to connect with them.

You need to look them in the eye, acknowledge them and say hi.

If they’re new, if they’ve been a member for three years, just say hi.

It seems like a no-brainer, but it can be easy to forget something so small when things are a little hectic at the gym.

Which is a bummer because this simple gesture breaks down barriers and helps people transition from the outside world (and whatever has happened in their day) to your gym.

For a community to thrive, people need to feel welcomed and acknowledged.

We all want to be noticed, to belong, for someone to care that we showed up.

Sure, we want that accountability, but we also want to connect.

We are social creatures who want that tribe, village, clan, fitness family, whatever you want to call it. We want it.

So make it your goal this week to greet every person that walks into your gym.

Give everyone the experience of belonging.

Coaching Challenge: You are a Performer

Pat Barber Coaching, Coaching Challenges

One of the skills that has been most useful to me as a coach is my history with performance.

I don’t mean workout performance.

I mean theatrical performance.

I studied musical theater and went to a high school where we all participated in multiple shows throughout the year. Pirates of Penzance. Into the Woods. I loooove it.

Transitioning from the stage to the front of a CrossFit class was totally natural.

I wish I could give that type of training to every coach with a snap of my finger.

For today, all I can offer is a reminder that when you walk through the doors of your facility, you need to have the mindset of a performer.

You are there to provide an experience.

You are there to serve.

Leave your problems outside.

Leave your bad mood, your excuses, your tiredness outside.

I’m not saying you can’t be human.

But you can’t chronically take away from the experience members are there to have.

That facility is a container, and you need to bring a certain energy to that space. From this hour to that hour, you are the absolute best version of yourself that you can currently offer.

What you might need is a ritual to help you transition from the outside world to the facility. Or, put differently, to help you get into character.

Maybe it’s a playlist while you drive. Maybe it’s a few minutes of breathing.

It’ll totally depend on whether you need to unwind or get pumped up.

My point is to have a few simple rituals on hand to help you transition from your everyday personality to your performer.

That’s this week’s challenge: A). Remember you’re a performer providing an experience; B). Try a few rituals to get into the right mood/mindset.⠀