Teen Session at CrossFit - Photographed by Julie Linnekin

Calling all middle school, high school and college athletes: It’s time to get fit! ChiroFit chiropractor Dr. Dave Crosson and CrossFit Barrington co-owners/coaches Brian Niven and Chris Bluse have joined forces to create a new summer Athletic Enhancement program to help you improve your game – whatever that game may be. Their goal is to provide a structured, safe, and properly coached program that addresses the whole athlete.

All three coaches are former college athletes: Dr. Dave Crosson played basketball, and CrossFit Coaches and Co-Owners Brian Niven and Chris Bluse were Division 1 and professional lacrosse players. Their athletic and professional experiences equip them with an exceptional knowledge base, all of which they applied in the creation of this program.

Teen Session at CrossFit - Photographed by Julie Linnekin
Teen Session at CrossFit – Photographed by Julie Linnekin

Dr. Crosson, who goes by “Dr. Dave” at ChiroFit, found CrossFit Barrington through a patient. He was immediately hooked on the diverse workouts, and has worked out there 5-6 days per week ever since. “In two years of working with CrossFit, I’ve personally seen more gains in strength and overall athletic ability than anywhere since I got out of college,” he says…

Dr. Dave Crosson - Photograph courtesy of ChiroFit
Dr. Dave Crosson – Photograph courtesy of ChiroFit

It wasn’t long before he, Brian, and Chris saw the synergies in their holistic approaches to athletes’ well being. “We thought if we could figure out a way to not only assess student athletes’ Functional Movement, but also monitor their strength gain with CrossFit professionals who know how to coach Olympic lifting and strength training, it just couldn’t be beat,” Dr. Dave says. “What we’re seeing a lot with middle school and high school athletes is that kids are specializing so early, that more and more sports-related injuries are happening at younger ages. We want to prevent all of that.”

Dr. Dave will assess athletes at ChiroFit once weekly – a 30-40 minute time commitment. “It’s my job to make them efficient for their work at CrossFit. We’ll make sure we screen out any movement differences or asymmetries that increase their risk for injury. They’re hopefully not going to spend a ton of time with me, but I’ll screen them once per week to make sure their movements are safe and healthy.”

Dr. Crosson with a Patient at ChiroFit - Photographed by Julie Linnekin
Dr. Dave with a Patient at ChiroFit – Photographed by Julie Linnekin

Then CrossFit takes over, and focuses on strengthening the whole athlete. “CrossFit’s approach is to continually challenge the body in new ways, which helps prevent repetitive stress injuries,” Dr. Dave says. “We want to break up the monotony and make sure their training is differentiated.”

NAME works the rings - Photograph courtesy of CrossFit Barrington
A female athlete works the rings at CFB – Photographed by Julie Linnekin

This global approach to athletic success is rare, especially for teens. “This is a comprehensive look at the athlete – top to bottom, front to back. You just don’t see this caliber of program in middle school, and only rarely in high school athletics,” Chris Bluse says. “Even when I played in the pros, we were left to our own devices.”

Chris knows from personal experience that not all training programs are created equal.

Chris Bluse, CFB co-owner and coach - Photograph courtesy of CrossFit Barrington
Chris Bluse, CFB co-owner and coach – Photograph courtesy of CrossFit Barrington

“If a training program doesn’t address the athlete as a whole, the investment of time and money is basically worthless,” Chris says. “It’s not a matter of if they’ll get injured, but when – it sets student athletes up for failure,” he says.

Chris feels that a program that combines safe, healthy movement with strength training is the key to success for teen athletes. “Healthy athletes are the ones that get more playing time, tally the points, get the assists, and progress to the next level,” he says.

“It’s all about the durability and sustainability of the athlete, and this is the program you need to develop that durability.”

When athletes lack durability, they’re often sidelined by injuries. “We start before the injury happens: we assess movement, communicate, and correct the athlete before a negative pattern develops into a habit and eventually an injury,” Dr. Dave says. But if a student already suffers from an injury, they’re likely still a candidate for the program. “If there are painful patterns, we’ll work on those and I’ll communicate with Brian and Chris on emphasizing non-painful movements while the athlete heals.”

Despite being accomplished athletes, all three coaches remember being turned loose during the summer with only a sheet of exercises for reference. “There was no accountability or instruction,” Brian recalls. “Coaches told us what to do, but not how or why. I never learned proper movement.” Brian says that if he had access to a program like this one, he would have suffered significantly fewer injuries.

ChiroFit's Dr. Dave Crosson Playing Basketball at Grand Valley State University and CrossFit's Brian Niven Playing Lacrosse at Virginia Military Instititue, Courtesy of VMIKeydets.com
ChiroFit’s Dr. Dave Crosson Playing Basketball at Grand Valley State University and CrossFit’s Brian Niven Playing Lacrosse at Virginia Military Instititue

David Danhauer, 16, has invested more than five years in CrossFit strength training, and is reaping the rewards of his dedication. A rising senior at BHS who divides his time between academics and varsity football, David first started doing CrossFit in Brian Niven’s garage (they happen to be cousins). He says that learning how to weight train properly at a young age provided a “foundation of strength” that gave him an edge over his competition. “CrossFit involves a lot of explosive speed, which is major in football. It’s definitely made a difference for me.”

David Danhauer, a BHS junior, executes a farmer carry - Courtesy of CrossFit Barrington
David Danhauer, a BHS junior, executes a farmer carry – Courtesy of CrossFit Barrington

David, who plays Defensive Line, even maintains his CrossFit schedule during the season. He went to CFB three mornings a week during football, but has upped it to six mornings per week in the off season. “It’s integral to what success I’ve had, without a doubt. I recommend it to any athlete. If you’re not the best athlete, which I wasn’t, it can really give you an advantage.” David looks forward to continuing his CrossFit training this summer, with the added benefit of evaluations with Dr. Dave.

The Athletic Enhancement program is highly specialized, and is based on an athlete’s individual needs. “The age of the athlete will help determine the structure of the program – if they’re twelve years old they’re not going to come into the gym six days per week – but that would be appropriate for some high school athletes, plus doubles for some college athletes,” Brian says.

The Athletic Enhancement package is offered at $750 for 8 weeks or $1000 for 12 weeks, which includes:

*  a complete Functional Movement Assessment

*  initial strength and speed assessment

*  a Y Balance injury assessment

*  functional movement corrective strategies to improve efficiency of the athlete

*  functional movement corrective strategies to reduce injury risk

*  an individualized strength and conditioning program custom-tailored to the athlete

*  2-hour time blocks for the athlete to work with a coach on specific needs and wants

*  soft tissue therapy as needed and/or wanted

*  objective strength goal tracking

*  complete access to the appropriate Crossfit Barrington classes

(CLICK HERE for schedule & sign up)

Teens conquer the Workout of the Day (WOD) Photograph courtesy of CrossFit Barrington
Teens conquer the Workout of the Day (WOD) Photograph courtesy of CrossFit Barrington

All aspects of the program will be tracked, monitored and measured, and athletes and their parents will have access to performance data throughout the program. “The data will go into our Move2Perform software that will allow us to compare the athlete’s scores to other athletes across the country that are the same age and sport,” Dr. Dave says.

“We teach kids how to move, and we watch them on a weekly basis to ensure that they’re making gains. If they’re not making gains, we try to figure out why,” Brian says. “This is preparation for that next level of athletics.”

Chris Bluse knows that teens’ investment in the program will prove worthwhile. “We cut our teeth in youth sports, from middle school and high school all the way up to the professional level. We’ve seen it all, we’ve done it all, and we know how to get you where you want to go.”

To learn more about the ChiroFit/CrossFit Athletic Enhancement program, or to register, please visit CrossFit Barrington, e-mail info@crossfitbarrington.com, or call 847.650.5589. You can also contact ChiroFit, e-mail Dr. Dave Crosson, or call 847.382.3194.


Marketplace - Crossfit BarringtonCrossFit Barrington

28066 W. Commercial Ave. #8
Lake Barrington, IL 60010




Marketplace - ChiroFit BarringtonChiroFit

303 North Northwest Highway, Suite 102
Barrington IL 60010



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