How does Taranis Select Their Team?

Another CrossFit Games season is done and with it comes inevitable questions, comments and opinions. Some are positive and some … not so much.

In case you are wondering, I will shed some light on how we at CrossFit Taranis select our team. (We have used this process since 2010 and it has been relatively unchanged except for the addition of the Open and the survey that we have athletes fill out prior to the Open commencing)

The process begins during every day training sessions. Observations are made regarding athletes’ physical abilities as well as potential. As the CrossFit Games Open draws near we begin to encourage our entire membership to participate regardless of ability, as it is a great way to develop community! If there are athletes that have aspirations to go further in the competition (Regionals or Games) as either a team athlete or an individual athlete we have them fill out a short survey.

The survey looks like this:

Athlete Name:

  1. Are you registering for the CrossFit Games Open? YES or NO
  2. Please circle one to finish this statement: I hope to qualify and compete at Regionals as: A) An individual athlete; B) A team athlete; C) Neither, just doing for fun and experience.
  3. If you qualify as an individual athlete at Regionals and make the choice to compete at Regionals as an individual athlete but do not make it to the CrossFit Games, are you interested in being a consideration for a Games qualified team position? YES or NO
  4. Of the 2 teams we hope to qualify for the Regionals which one would be your first choice to be considered for? TARANIS or THUNDER
  5. Are you open to being placed on a team other than your first choice? YES or NO
  6. Each team has 8 athletes, 2 of those athletes are alternates and do not play on game day but are still considered team members and the same level of commitment is required of those athletes. Please answer the following based on this information:
  7. Are you comfortable being listed as an alternate on a team? YES or NO
  8. In the event that you might be listed as an alternate on Team Taranis but we could use you as a starter on Thunder, would you prefer to be on Thunder? YES or NO

Any other information that you would like to tell us:

Thanks very much for taking the time to do this!! The selection process is a big task of strategy and we approach this process the same way we do for game day decisions: MAKE THE BEST CHOICE FOR THE GOAL OF THE TEAM.

Once the survey is complete the head coach and the coaches of the Competitor Development Program review the survey forms and attempt to build 2 teams that will qualify for Regionals. One team is built with fewer athletes in an attempt to free up a variety of athletes all of whom help in qualifying the second team for Regionals. The aforementioned process takes usually 2 or 3 meetings and several discussions with athletes to clarify information on the form (survey above) and any questions the athletes may have.

Once the decisions are made, athletes are placed on the Open rosters and attempt to qualify for the Regional competition.

The second stage of building our team begins once the Open is complete. If we have qualified a team(s), we begin to select our Regional roster of 4 male and 4 female athletes. This selection is based on several factors: Physical health, Physical ability, Individual aspirations (going as an individual to Regionals or not), placing in the Open, and attitude and effort throughout the Open.

The selected roster of athletes will begin team practices. At the very first team practice it is laid out to the athletes on the team what the expectations are and we explain in detail that NO ATHLETE is guaranteed a spot on the Regional floor and even if the athlete makes the Regional floor, there is NO GUARNATEE that the athlete will be on a qualified Games team. We are very clear about this fact.

Prior to the Regional competition, the head coach has closed door private meetings with each athlete on the roster individually. These meetings are confidential and the athletes are encouraged to voice any comments or concerns with practices, coaching, attitudes, or clashing personalities. The coach will ask for feedback in these private meeting as to whom, in the interviewed athlete’s opinion, should be on the floor at Regionals.

The floor athletes are selected based on the following criteria: Physical health, Experience, Team cohesion, Physical abilities, Attitude and effort during practice, Team athlete feedback, Regional events released and performance in those events during practices.

The third stage of building a Games team only comes if we are lucky enough to qualify for the CrossFit Games. Discussions begin with the 4 male and 4 female athletes that were on the Regionals roster as to whether or not they wish to continue. Discussions also take place with any individual athletes that did not qualify for the CrossFit Games as an individual to determine whether or not they are still interested in competing on a qualified Games team. Usually at this point a new revised 4 male and 4 female athletes are submitted to CFHQ. Practices then begin with the new team of 8.

At the first practice it is outlined to the 8 athletes what is expected as well as the financial obligation required to go to the CF Games (without significant sponsorship it is very costly) All athletes are reminded that everyone is now placed on the bench and the process of selecting the Games floor athletes begins again. NO ATHLETE IS GUARANTEED A SPOT ON THE FIELD AT THE CF GAMES.

During the process of preparing for the CrossFit Games there are TWO private interviews with each athlete of the team. The first interview takes place after about 2 weeks post Regionals, and the second interview takes place 7-10 days prior to departure for California. Once again these meetings are confidential and the athletes are encouraged to voice any comments or concerns with practices, coaching, attitudes, or clashing personalities. The coach will ask for feedback in these private meetings as to whom, in the interviewed athlete’s opinion, should be on the floor at The CrossFit Games.

Selection of the 6 athletes that take the field at the CrossFit Games in Carson California is based on the following: Physical health, Experience, Team cohesion, Physical abilities, Attitude and effort during practice, Team athlete feedback, Mental toughness and durability, Games events released and performance in those events during practices.

Because of the delay in talking to all of the athletes and the limited amount of information released by CFHQ, the final roster decision can be very late in the season. We try to delay it as long as possible to make, what we feel, is the BEST decision for the team and the majority of the athletes on the team. We do not consider one person’s motivations or agenda above that of the many.

This is an extremely arduous and challenging endeavor for the both the athletes and the staff involved in preparing the athletes and keeping them healthy. Sometimes there are hours upon hours of deliberating all the facts and intangibles in fielding a strong and successful Games team. We pride ourselves on being transparent from the very beginning so that athletes can make their choices with eyes wide open. At the end of the day there are going to be disappointed athletes. Disappointing athletes is not something that is enjoyable for us at CF TARANIS and we do not take it lightly. While it may pale in comparison to playing at the Games, the alternates are always given jersey’s identifying them as team members. They are always given the option to be included in the team travel, accommodation and pre and post wod activities. Fundraising is shared with the alternates and in true sportsmanship, playing athletes have always shared their Games swag with Team Alternates. We are a Team of 8 with 6 playing on game day. That is sport.

This is our system.  We stand by it, rooted in truth and very transparent.

 

Monday July 27,2015

Monday July 27, 2015

The gym is open for all of our usual classes.

3.0 hours are 3:30pm- 7:30pm

If you follow the Strength WOD program and have not taken a 3-4 day rest block, do it now. This is important to take care of before we go into our new block of programming. Do restorative activities like walking, casual cycling, swimming or gentle yoga. Book in for a massage with your favorite RMT. Do things that are good for your soul.

W.O.D.

Triangle Couplet
15-10-6
Thrusters – 165/115
Bar Muscle Ups

Scaling will be posted in the gym as per usual.

Sleep well Friends!

Thursday July 23, 2015

Day 1 of the 2015 Reebok CrossFit Games is done! Huge amounts of pride felt all over the gym regarding our competing athletes!! Finishing off the Day with Tyson impressively standing in 12th overall and Team Taranis climbing back up the standings to 27th by taking 10th place in the Mile Relay. Rumor has it a few Teamies set some 1 mile run PR’s! Looking forward to Day 2 on Friday!

WOD:

5 rnds for time
50 yards KB Farmer Walk – 2p/1.5p
50 yards KB Front Rack Walk – 2p/1.5p
5 Shoulder to over head – barbell 135/95
20 weighted step ups 12″box, DB’s 70/50

The gym is open for all of our usual classes.

3.0 hours are 3:30pm- 7:30pm

7:30pm -8:30pm  Rowing Workshop with Mike Braithwaite. Spots available! email me vanessa@taranisathletics.com

Sleep well Friends!

Sunday July 19, 2015

There is phase 3 from 11:30am-1:00pm

This is the last day of this strength block. Next week (Games week) there will be no supplemental programming. I recommend active rest and light mobility for those that have been following the program diligently.

WOD:
5 rounds
25 KB swings 2/1.5
25 sit-ups
25 back extensions
25 knees to elbows

Strength
LEVEL 1
a. Warm up with the class

b. Clean 1-1-1-1 (RPE 8 on last set)

c. 2 rounds of WOD with 1.5/1 pood KB

LEVEL 2
a. Self led warm up

b. Clean
*build to 85-90% of 1 RM

c. Max distance HS walk in 5 minutes

LEVEL 3
a. Self led warm up

b. Clean
*Build to a heavy single/max for the day

c. Max distance HS walk in 7 minutes

2-a-Day
LEVEL 2: WOD with 1.5/1 pood KBs
LEVEL 3: Same as WOD

Saturday July 18, 2015

There is no phase 3
There is Competitor Development Program (CDP) from 11:30am-1:00pm

WOD: 5 rounds
20 wall ball
10 deadlift 225/165

Strength
LEVEL 1
a. Warm up with class

b. Snatch 1-1-1-1 (RPE 8 on last set)

c. 3 rounds
20 wall ball
10 deadlift 185/135

LEVEL 2
a. Self led warm up

b. Snatch 1-1-1-1-1 Build to 85-90% of 1RM

c. Superset
Alternating DB curls
Tricep Kick backs
15 x 5 sets

LEVEL 2
a. Self led warm up

b. Snatch
*Build to a heavy single/max for the day

c. Superset
Alternating DB curls
Tricep Kick backs
15 x 4 sets

d. Superset
Barbell bicep curls
P-bar dips
12 x 4 sets

2-A-Day
CDP

Friday July 16, 2015

There is phase 3 from 11:30am-12:30pm
There is phase 3 from 3:30pm-7:30pm

WOD:
10 rounds
5 HSPU
10 one-legged squats, alternating
15 pull-ups

Strength
LEVEL 1
a. Warm up with class

b. Back Squat 1-1-1-1 (RPE 8 on last set)

c. 4 rounds
5 HSPU
10 one-legged squats, alternating
15 pull-ups

LEVEL 2
a. Self led warm up

b. Back Squat 1-1-1-1-1
*Build to 85-90% of 1 RM

LEVEL 3
a. Self led warm up

b. Back Squat
*Establish a heavy single/1RM for the day

2-A-Day
Same as WOD

Wednesday July 15, 2015

There is phase 3 from 11:30am-12:30pm
There is phase 3 from 3:30pm-7:30pm

WOD:
Snatch Balance 1-1-1-1-1-1-1

Strength
LEVEL 1
Do the class

LEVEL 2
a. Warm up with the class

b. Snatch Balance with the class

c. Weighted Pull-Up
20% x 3 EMOM x 10

LEVEL 3
a. Warm up with class

b. Snatch Balance with the class

c. Weighted Pull-Up
25% x 3 EMOM x 12

2-A-Day
Rest

Tuesday July 14, 2015

There is no midday phase 3
There is phase 3 from 3:30pm-7:30pm

WOD:
AMRAP in 12 minutes
10 One arm alternating DB squat Snatches 70/50
50 double unders

*If mobility is an issue do:

10 power snatches 95/65 barbell
10 Front squats 95/65
50 double unders

Strength
LEVEL 1
a. Warm up with Class

b. Deadlift 1-1-1-1 (RPE 9 on last set)

c. 8 minutes of AMRAP

LEVEL 2
a. Self led warm up

b. Deadlift 1-1-1-1-1 Build to a heavy single (85-90% of max)

c. For time
21-15-9
toes to bar
sit-ups
*upon completion of the couplet, accumulate 90 seconds of plank. This is included in your total time

LEVEL 3
a. Self led warm up

b. Deadlift 1-1-1-1-1 Build to a heavy single/max for the day

c. For time
21-15-9
toes to bar
sit-ups
*upon completion of the couplet, accumulate 3 minutes of plank. This is included in your total time

2-A-Day
Same as WOD
*Be smart on the DB squat snatches. If you suck at them, SCALE IT!! They are no joke!

Monday July 13, 2015

There is no midday phase 3
There is phase 3 from 3:30pm-7:30pm

WOD:
3 rounds
1000m row or 1200m run
40 box jumps (step down only) 20″
20 wall ball
10 KB swings 1.5/1
5 minutes rest

Strength:
LEVEL 1
a. Warm up with the class

b. Snatch 5-5-5-5 (RPE 8 on last set)

c. For Time
1000m row
40 box jumps (step down only) 20″
20 wall ball
10 burpees

LEVEL 2
a. Self led warm up

b. Squat Snatch 60% x 10-8-6-4
Rest 3, 2, 1 mins

c. Strict HSPU
2-4 reps EMOM x 10

LEVEL 3
a. Self led warm up

b. Squat Snatch 60% x 12-10-8-6-4
Rest 4, 3, 2, 1 mins
*touch and go reps

c. Strict HSPU
3-5 reps EMOM x 12
*If 5 strict is not a challenge, wear a weight vest
**If still not a challenge, add a deficit and a weight vest

2-A-Day
Same as WOD

Page 1 of 3123