Let’s talk about Muscle for a minute. It was there, it was everywhere. On the muscle-up rings, driving deadlifts like a jackhammer operator, even over there in the corner doing double-unders, Muscle, the kind with a capital M. The title gives it away, all this muscle & might, form & fight was at the NPFL Combine in Atlanta, and my son & I got to enjoy at the relaxed speed of spectators.
A meager $10 for me, and a smile from him . . . Why would we not go? You can’t see anything for less than ten clams these days, but for those few dollars spent, they even gave me a t-shirt, a nice one. Tony Budding & the NPFL are creating a new era of sport, and advertising itself is as easy as a free t-shirt with the cost of admission. Oh, and let the kids who are under 12 in for free, and future generations of ambition, work, might & muscle will be formed, all because of you and your generosity. (Before anyone thinks it went unnoticed.)
Many people have not yet heard of the NPFL, but most people I speak to are at least passingly familiar with CrossFit and the CrossFit Games. It is not necessary that you CrossFit to try out for the NPFL, but in this early stage of the League, CrossFit seems to be the most popular channel by which to get the word out for competitors & spectators alike. The structure & form of the try outs distinctly resembles CrossFit, so having it in your arsenal would be beneficial, but again, not required.
All that said, there was no shortage of CrossFit representation at the Atlanta Combine. If you have never been fortunate enough to find yourself in a CrossFit environment, even one not labeled as such, it is difficult to explain the openness, the transparency, the inclusion you feel, see & experience with the CrossFit community, even if you yourself don’t belong to any particular ‘Box’ (as CrossFit gyms are frequently & endearingly called). The sense of community is tight, but in all my travels & explorations, I have never found any community gathering to be exclusionary or snobbish, even if you (as I do) are up front about not belonging to a Box. Even the competitors are willing to talk, shake a hand, and listen, so if you ever get the opportunity to attend an event or visit a Box, jump all over it.
Now that the Atlanta Combine has concluded, I’d like to offer a congratulations to all the women & men who tried out. Those who made the cut, and those who didn’t should all be commended. The competition was rough, and necessarily so, but as Abraham Maslow said, “In any given moment we have two options: to step forward into growth or to step back into safety,” and everyone at the weekend Combine took a step forward into growth, both personal & professional. Making the cut or not making it was just a matter of how big a step you were capable of taking.