GolfFit? Blending CrossFit and Golf to Extend Life of the Game

November 23, 2021 by
Photo Credit: Thor Parrish
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Since the age of six, it’s likely you’d spot Thor Parrish with a golf club in his hand. But now, it’s about a 50/50 shot he’s holding a golf club or lifting a barbell. Lucky for Parrish he doesn’t need to choose between the two, in fact, he encourages people to do both — and that’s exactly what he plans on doing with his new CrossFit affiliate opening in early 2022.

“I really love the whole methodology and culture of CrossFit and that’s why I want to affiliate but we’re really blending CrossFit and golf together because I’ve seen the impact it’s made on myself and those I train,” said Parrish.

Just 25-years-old, Parrish is a CrossFit Level 1 coach, certified personal trainer and PGA teaching professional in Naples, Florida. Although golf is his primary sport, CrossFit quickly became a passion for him over the last ten years once his dad introduced him to the sport.

“I started to see how he used it (CrossFit) for hockey because he was still a club hockey player and he’s like, ‘I keep doing CrossFit because I want to keep doing this forever’ and that’s really cool because I really like golf so I’m going to keep doing CrossFit so I can play golf for forever,” continued Parrish.

And it wasn’t long before he saw similar results.

“I don’t get tired compared to other golfers. They play 18 holes and they’re exhausted afterward or they do a one-hour lesson and they’re tired afterward and I’m like, ‘let’s go play 36 holes, let’s go hit 1,000 more golf balls.’ I just have so much more capacity to practice compared to those who don’t do CrossFit,” said Parrish.

After graduating from the Golf Management Program at Florida Gulf Coast University, Parrish pursued teaching and coaching golf to juniors and seniors as well as becoming the co-owner of the Junior Golf Performance Academy training between 150 to 200 kids — focusing on long-term development by implementing CrossFit into their golf program.

“They’ll learn overhead squats with a golf club, I’ll teach them how to deadlift and hinge. I’m Papa Protein is what they call me because I talk about eating meat and vegetables,” Parrish joked.

As for his soon-to-be affiliate, he plans to have a full golf studio within the CrossFit box, Thunder Performance, where he can work with his golf clients while continuing to implement the CrossFit methodology.

But five to ten years from now — he hopes to bring his CrossFit gym straight to the golf course.

“I want to take this concept gym, prove that it works, and then go to a golf course and say, ‘hey, let me open this up here.’ What I really want is a golf course that will let me run a CrossFit gym out of it,” Parrish concluded.

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