Review: Functional Strength CrossFit

Rosedale, Auckland

The Box

Functional Strength CrossFit is a place for people serious about their training.  The facilities are awesome, the location prime and, with former Olympian Richie Patterson for an owner, it’s unsurprising that the coaching standards are high.

When I visited, Functional Strength CrossFit had only just moved into their awesome new Rosedale premises from the Millennium Center.  The move was well worth the wait.  With a massive space split into weightlifting and CrossFit areas, there’s heaps of room for everyone to get a good session in.

I have to admit to feeling somewhat intimidated when I walked in that door – the shirtless boys were ripped, the girls had thighs twice as big as mine and the whole place had a very professional vibe.  I can imagine a newbie wandering in the door thinking that they’d have to go home and get fit before they started (a CrossFit misconception, but a common one at that).  I plucked up my courage and carried on through the door – it was 7am, afterall, and I’d wrenched myself out of bed for a reason.

I got a relatively warm welcome from the coaches and chatted with a girl who had decided to convert from CrossFit to weightlifting because she liked how her progress was more measureable.  The warm-up was solid – drills and stretches moving up and down the gym, loosening our bodies up first thing in the morning.

An aside: I don’t believe enough boxes put enough importance or time into doing thorough and specific warm ups.  This article in the CrossFit Journal highlights how a proper warm up will help you perform better and will reduce your risk of injury.



15mins to do heavy squat cleans.

15min AMRAP:
6x pull ups
12x box jumps
6x toes to bar
12x wall balls


Throughout the strength portion of the session I received excellent coaching tips and encouragement.  I was encouraged to go heavier, but totally within reason – nothing crazy or impossible.  Although the girl in front of me was lifting twice as much as I was, I was still praised for my efforts and this was good coaching – making me feel good for my own effots.

The WOD was a tough one – it totally killed me, but in a good way and I needed it!  Richie arrived part way through and gave some encouragement.  It was my only encounter with him and I don’t know if I gave him my happiest face as I was feeling a wee bit smashed.  Pip, the main coach, gave more encouragment throughout the WOD than I was used to and I really appreciated it.  She was engaged, she cared about what we got out of the session and she pushed us hard.  I was impressed by the fitness of the other athletes and it’s clear that this is a place where people train hard.  The other athletes helped me in finding and organising my equipment, making me feel welcome.

This is one of the few boxes that has charged me a drop-in fee.  Each to their own, though I do like the community spirit of free drop-ins.

Functional Strength CrossFit is a well organised, impressive box.  They offer a wide-range of classes, which appear to be well-structured, and the coaches are professional.  I’d be interested in discovering more about the community feel of the box and how the athletes interact, but think that this must be one of the top boxes in Auckland.

More info:


About Josinta

I am passionate about travel, CrossFit and writing and have combined all three in my blog - boxjumping. A Level 1 certified CrossFit trainer, I am visiting as many CrossFit boxes as I can during my travels. This has opened many doors - I´ve been to random parts of cities, met awesome people and seen the myriad of ways a CrossFit box can be run. I also CouchSurf - another awesome way to meet locals and end up in areas you never expected. I like hidden corners, local flavours, sitting in a cosy café with my journal, lying on a hot beach with a book. I like flexibility. I like freedom. I like learning about myself, other people, about the world. Life is a journey, they say, but it is also short and full of the unexpected. I am making the most of mine.

Posted on 12/09/2013, in Boxes, New Zealand Boxes and tagged , , , , , , , . Bookmark the permalink. 2 Comments.

  1. Thanks for the great feedback Josinta,
    Just reading through some of your other reviews and you make some great observations, As a CF owner I will look to stay on top of our customer satisfaction 🙂 and making everyone that drops in feel welcome at FS

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