September 12, 2017

Have you seen this coach?



So the other day I rolled into the gym for a Saturday partner WOD. I knew it was gonna be weird because virtually all of the coaches were off at competitions of their own as well as most of the members. When I got there I found out that Dave Panchik (Scott’s dad) was coaching. Now prior to this I had met Dave a couple of times and we had done a few workouts together. He’s a super nice guy and I thought to myself “Ok. This will be a nice casual day at the gym for me.” I would have been totally right if by casual I meant “A warmup created by Satan”. This dude had me huffing and puffing doing football sprint drills, med ball cleans, and flutter kicks as well as a dozen other things. I’m a little surprised he didn’t ask me to dodge a wrench as he threw them at me. It was a little intense....

I will say his coaching was spot on and exactly what I have come to love about Mentality. He made several corrections in my form/technique but was incredibly positive the entire time. It’s obvious where his influence in that regard has carried from the family to the other coaches. While I am on the topic of family, it seems that  every time I talk to Dave I find out about another Panchik son that I didn’t know existed. This week he mentioned a son that lives in Pennsylvania that I had never heard about. I swear this dude has so many kids he is going to have to live in a shoe. Fortunately the shoe will be made by Reebok and will come with protection for rope climbs. I’m just gonna start telling people that don’t know me that I’m the other Panchik son they haven’t met yet. “Hi. I’m Shaquille Panchik. Nice to meet you.” Who am I kidding? I’m not even fit enough to be a fake Panchik...

Sorry. I got off topic. Let’s get back to the topic of coaching here. This can be a hot issue for a lot of CrossFitters and let’s be honest, not all coaches are created equal. Coaches are like snowflakes. No two are exactly alike. Finding a coach that fits what you are trying to accomplish is very important if you want to grow and thrive. I’ve been incredibly impressed with the consistency of the coaching at Mentality. They are all very attentive, specific, and roll their eyes at me on a regular basis. They also push me to get better every day. I can say this because I have seen a LOT of coaches over 6 years and multiple CrossFit gyms. There are several different types of coaches you could possibly will run into at these gyms and I have given them all nicknames.

“Old Yeller” - This coach doesn’t really help you. They just yell at you. I used to have a coach who would yell things like “What are you looking up for?!? God can’t save you now!” and “No wonder you're single. Your burpees look like you’re humping the floor!” She was a peach...

The “But Sandwich” - A “But Sandwich” sounds like something you would find in a questionable movie. In reality it is a coach who loves to tell you how much you suck but will sandwich it between two compliments. “Those squats looked better BUT your feet are in the wrong place BUT good effort.” 

“Captain Obvious” - This is a coach who simply repeats to you what you should already know. “Today we will be working on overhead squats. I want you to grab a bar, take it overhead, and squat it. Any questions?”

"The Creeper” - This coach is way too preoccupied to coach you because they are busy helping some of the more attractive members with their “form”. This has literally never happened to me but Saxon has been real nice lately....

“Mr. Stat Drop” - This coach loves to compare and humble brag. “That squat looked almost looked as good as my 400# back squat this morning. I’ll be right back. I have to go get a protein shake to help me recover from my Fran PR...”

The “But Sandwich with Cheese” - This is like the normal “But Sandwich” however the second compliment is backhanded. “That squat looked better BUT your feet were in the wrong place BUT it was a good effort in spite of your age.”

That is really just a handful of the type of coaches I have seen over the years. I’m sure I missed a few so feel free to add funny coaches you have seen over the years into the comments...

Without sucking up I will say thanks to all of the coaches I am currently training under. You guys have no idea how much your guidance and feedback means to me and if I had to guess, the entire Mentality family. As individuals and a team, you are the best... #bettertogether #teammentality



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