I've never done CrossFit: book a free trial

Member of the month Kirsty Griffiths

We're excited to share the inspiring #CrossFitStory of Kirsty Griffiths a professional musician who has been training with us since 2019. Find out more about her challenging journey, her goals and what motivates her to stay with CrossFit GVA.

Kirsty, can you introduce yourself in a few words?
I'm Kirsty Griffiths, 47, born and bred in Geneva, but of Welsh origin. I'm a professional musician (opera, harp and UN choirmaster) and also an international fraud investigator.

Did you do any other sport before CrossFit?
Having a cousin who was an Olympic butterfly swimmer, swimming has been an integral part of my life. I was always on the school team, not necessarily because I was good, but because I was usually the only one who could swim the butterfly properly!

I really started doing sport after a horse-riding accident that left me with two broken vertebrae and in a wheelchair. The specialist told me to get used to it because I'd have back problems for the rest of my life. I changed specialists. The next one told me what I wanted to hear, which was to lift weights and make my back stronger than it had ever been. But at the time, I was in poor physical condition and all I could do was aquagym, where the grannies were in better shape than me! Then I discovered Bodypump and gradually started lifting weights.

When did you start CrossFit and why?
Well, as if breaking my back wasn't enough, in 2019 I fell into a pothole in New York and tore every known ligament in my ankle. Recovering from my first surgery, there was an offer from BuyClub to try Crossfit for a month. I gave it a try and instantly fell in love. But then I attended a seminar at the box on ankle mobility and the coach noticed something was wrong. Without that seminar, I would never have known that I needed another major ankle operation.

After the second surgery, my physiotherapist was a CrossFit enthusiast and many of the warm-up exercises we did, including the ten-second pause squats you all love, were part of my regular physio routine.

What was your goal when you started out? Have you achieved it since?
My initial goal was to rebuild my body and be stronger than before. I also thought about losing weight, but body rebuilding happens naturally with CrossFit, so I eat healthy without worrying too much about it. I've definitely reached my goal of rebuilding and improving the flexibility of my ankles. But I still want to get stronger.

What are your goals for this year?
My dream is to be able to run and do a box jump (not on the little box). At the moment, the ankle isn't quite ready, but it's only May, so there's still time before the end of the year.

What do you particularly like about CrossFit GVA?
I love the camaraderie. I've met so many people at the box who have given me tips to improve my technique (especially handstand push ups), but also to encourage me. Sometimes you have that really hard WOD where you don't want to push yourself and want to give up, but you're encouraged by everyone around you and you leave the gym sweating with a big smile of satisfaction.

Have you gained in confidence since you started CrossFit? Do you feel better in your body, have you developed your mental outlook?
Absolutely. In the beginning, I was afraid of hanging from a bar, terrified of falling and hurting my ankle. I was worried about deadlifts because of my back and I was afraid of dropping a bar on my head. Today, I walk on my hands, swing on the bars, lift weights, do snatches, etc. I don't think "oh, I'm going to hurt my ankle" anymore. I no longer think "oh, I can't do that", I think "I can't wait to try that".

Do you have any special memories of your time at the box that you'd like to share?
My best memory is of the open and the presence of my friends to support me, the same friends who witnessed my broken back and multiple ankle operations. It was the culmination of my determination and all the people at CrossFit GVA who helped me achieve my goals.

What made you decide to do the Open?
It was my first Open where I was in good mental health and didn't worry about my position in the rankings compared to the others. It was my best result ever, and I even qualified for the quarter-finals in my region!

What would you say to someone who's hesitating to start CrossFit for fear of injury or lack of ability?
CrossFit is totally inclusive and every exercise can be adapted. The coaches are exceptional and always ask if there are any injuries, while ensuring the right technique to avoid injury, and giving advice on using the right weight. Most importantly, classes are limited in number, so there are never too many people to prevent the coach from concentrating on everyone.

CrossFit helps you overcome your fears and teaches you how far you can push yourself and what you can achieve. As for fitness levels, you'd be amazed at how quickly they improve. I used to think the SkiErg was a torture machine, but now I prefer it to the rowing machine or the bike!

Not sure if CrossFit is for you? Come and take a free trial class, discover our 2 gyms and ask us all your questions.

Visiting our region? Come and drop in at one of our two venues

CHF 30 / drop-in or CHF 40 with a box tshirt