Content Wars


Content rules the world in the digital age. Information has never been more readily available, and the population has never been more thirsty for it. With both supply and demand for information at record highs, thanks to the Internet, subject-matter experts are rising to the top with newfound recognition and clout. Also, consumers are taking advantage of an opportunity to gain higher-level insight outside of the traditional, more time-consuming, more expensive channels (like college, trade school, etc.).

The CrossFit community is right at the head of this movement, as well. The CrossFit Journal, for example, is quite possibly the most comprehensive (at least for the cost) online resource for exercise, nutrition and other relevant topics accessible with just a few clicks 24 hours a day, seven days a week. YouTube is a viable threat to the personal-training community, as some of the world’s best coaches have hours and hours of movement progressions, talks and other valuable information available to the public for free at any time.

When you’ve got subject matter experts like Sean Waxman, Dusty Hyland and Kelly Starrett posting videos and articles with the highest-level insight into weightlifting, gymnastics and mobility, nearly anyone can learn the basics of these subjects from their desktop. Quite honestly, many CrossFit coaches would be lying to you if they said they didn’t supplement their experience with content from these three coaches and others before they teach their own students.

So, what does this mean? Well, the truth is, watching a video of Carl Paoli teaching the muscle-up doesn’t replace the coaching one can receive in person, but it does raise the bar. “Common knowledge” is a pool of information that is growing daily in the information age.

The battles for the best, most-viewed content on the Internet will force coaches to be better. Furthermore, these content wars are, in my opinion, the early bits of momentum in a revolution in the fitness industry. The proverbial cream is rising to the top, and with performance as a governor, athletes and coaches are going to continue to raise their game with access to world-class information.

— Logan Gelbrich