Make sure you know your box before thinking outside of it.

I recently read a blog by a very successful strength coach in Boston named Mike Boyle. He made a statement in that blog that most are conditioned to immediately act negatively to. He said, about thinking outside the box, that “there is a reason there is a box.” His implication that he made very clear in the rest of the blog post is that the box created a boundary that you want to consider before stepping over. “Thunking outside the box” had been a saying universally championed in almost all facets of life. It sounds good and implies creative thinking. Fair enough. The problem comes from thinking outside an area that most people don”t understand in the first place. In other words, thinking outside a box when you don”t even understand the basics of that box. In fitness, and in personal training  , this can be a relevant  idea. The box is there for a reason.

The box contains the fundamentals that must be MASTERED before exploring outside into unchartered territory. For many, the time it takes to master these sometimes very complicated fundamentals is not appealing.  Some opt for the newest, seemingly innovative training ideas without regard to the “why am I doing this?” question crossing there mind. Thinking creatively and developing innovative training techniques is a great thing, but make sure that the base in which these new ideas are stemming from is strong.

Trainers and trainees, UNDERSTAND THE BOX, however small it may seem, before blindly venturing out of it.

Matthew Pirtle, MA, CSCS  Emergefitnesstraining.com

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