Crossfit Games: The ultimate competition

What are the CrossFit Games?

The CrossFit Games is a sporting competition that crowns the fittest man and woman on earth, referred to as "The Fittest on Hearth". To get here, athletes must pass the rankings starting with the Open.

Today they are called the Nobull CrossFit Games, as they are sponsored by this sports brand. From 2011 to 2021 they were the Reebok CrossFit Games. Before Reebok sponsored this great event, it was simply called the CrossFit Games.

In this competition, athletes must be prepared for anything, including testing themselves with surprise elements.

It is typical for athletes to face tests such as running, swimming, cycling, weightlifting, gymnastic elements, carrying very heavy rare objects, obstacle tests...

Basically, professional athletes spend the whole year training for a competition that is mysterious.

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How many people compete?

Over the years the CrossFit Games have evolved tremendously to be as inclusive as possible, growing in the number and type of categories.

The following categories are currently competing:

  • individual: male and female
  • aged group: teenagers (14-17 years) and masters (35-60+)
  • team: 2 men + 2 women of the same affiliated box
  • adaptive: athletes with disabilities. Within this group, work continues to expand the division of athletes.

When are they held?

They are usually located during the first week of the first week of August.

This competition lasts 4 days, from Thursday to Sunday.

Where are the CrossFit Games held?

At the beginning, they were held at the Ranch, owned by the family of Dave Castrothe former director of the CrossFit Games until 2022.

Seeking to expand the competition, they moved to Home Depot Californiabut for the first time in 2017, they moved to Madison.

CrossFit Games Winners

2021Justin MedeirosTia-Clair ToomeyCrossFit Mayhem
2020Mathew FraserTia-Clair ToomeyNo team event
2019Mathew FraserTia-Clair ToomeyCrossFit Mayhem Freedom
2018Mathew FraserTia-Clair ToomeyCrossFit Mayhem Freedom
2017Mathew FraserTia-Clair ToomeyWasatch CrossFit
2016Mathew FraserKatrín Tanja DavíðsdóttirCrossFit Mayhem Freedom
2015Ben SmithKatrín Tanja DavíðsdóttirCrossFit Mayhem Freedom
2014Rich Froning Jr.Camille Leblanc-BazinetCrossFit Invictus
2013Rich Froning Jr.Samantha BriggsHack's Pack UTE
2012Rich Froning Jr.Annie ThorisdottirHack's Pack UTE
2011Rich Froning Jr.Annie ThorisdottirCrossFit New England
2010Graham HolmbergKristan CleverCrossFit Fort Vancouver
2009Mikko SaloTanya WagnerNorthwest CrossFit
2008Jason KhalipaCaity MatterCrossFit Oakland
2007James FitzgeraldJolie GentryCrossFit Santa Cruz


History of the CrossFit Games

2022 - Justin Bergh new Games director

The season begins with the dismissal of the Games, Dave Castro. He is replaced by his right-hand man Justin Bergh, y delegate to Adrian Bosman, until now the head judge of the competition, the task of planning the season..

2021 - NOBULL

The season began with the announcement of NOBULL's sponsorship.

nobull crossfit games

See implemented the Quarterfinalsa phase that succeeded the Open and of which the qualified for the Semifinals. Although the initial intention was for the Semi-Finals to be in person, circumstances forced 10 events to be held remotely.

Appeared on Last Chance Qualifier that granted one last chance to the athletes who had fallen short of qualifying for the Semifinals: 2 girls and 2 boys got their ticket to Madison.

Tia-Clair Toomey with already 4 titles behind her made history by winning the first 3 events.s, putting him in a good position to defend his title for another year. He also managed to win 9 events, bringing his career total to 33, breaking the previous record set by Mat Fraser.

Justin Medeiros won the Games and became the youngest male athlete to win the Games to crown the fittest.

2020 - On the ranch again

crossfit games 2020

A year marked by the pandemic, it seemed that the season could not be held. Twenty-eight competitions in 21 countries on six continents were planned, but competitions began to be postponed and eventually cancelled due to the impediments of the global emergency situation..

The solution chosen: to hold a first virtual phase of the Games with the best of the Open. Only the Top 5 men and women ended up competing in person at the finals at the Ranch..

crossfit games 2020 winners
Tia Clair Toomey and Mat Fraser

Once again proving that no matter the circumstances Tia Clair Toomey and Mat Fraser won with a margin of 360 and 545 points respectively.

2019 - Sanctioned events

crossfit games 2019

Glassman completely revolutionized the season by drastically changing the Games qualification methodology.. The Open gained much more importance as a direct qualification option to the Games. CrossFit Regionals were replaced by CrossFit-sanctioned events organized by third parties.

While the number of individual athletes multiplied by including representation from all international countries, the number of teams and aged groups decreased.

In order to have a more manageable competition track, there were cuts after each event, considerably narrowing the number of athletes competing. After the 6th event on Saturday morning there were only 10 men and 10 women left..

Although this year was highly criticized by athletes who were left out of that top 10 and supported by a good part of the community, was not an impediment for Tia Clair Toomey and Mat Fraser to win for the 3rd and 4th consecutive time, respectively..

2018 - The rowing marathon

Record participation in the Open with 416 thousand registered.

what are crossfit games

The first day of competition concluded with the longest event in the history of the Games, a rowing marathon that was won by Lukas Esslinger with a time of 2:43:50 and Margaux Alvarez with a time of 3:00:42..

2017 - New location in Wisconsin

2017 crossfit games

After 7 years at the stadium Home Depot CenterThe Games move to the Alliant Energy Center in Madison, Wisconsin.

This year's regionals were innovative in that not a single barbell was used in any of the 6 events. For the individuals there was a heavy dose of dumbbells and gymnastic exercises. For the teams, the 6-person worm was the star element.

At the Games, Math Fraser wins the competition for the second year in a row in the most dominant manner yetwith the largest margin of victory over the second and accumulating 1132 out of a possible 1300.

Quite the opposite happened with the girls. Tia-Clair Toomey won by just 2 points over fellow Aussie and Kara Saunders being the smallest margin in history.

2016 - Tenth Anniversary of CrossFit Games

crossfit games winners

This year the athletes were surprised with the message to pack a suitcase to travel by plane, not knowing that they would end up at the Ranch in San Jose for the first events of the 2016 Games.

2015 - New divisions in the Open

crossfit games 2015

A change in the structure of the organization was introduced. The regionals would be 8 in total, and the number of athletes that would reach Games would be 40.

The following were added 2 new divisions for the Open:

  • Teenage Division: 14 - 17 years old
  • Scaled: adapted version

In creating the scaled-up version Castro saw the opportunity to present the Even more demanding RX WODs.

During the Games, Castro made a voting on Twitter to decide between a Long DT and Heavy DT for the last event on Friday, the winner was heavy.

This year Fraser again came in second place and that marked the before and after of the athlete's sporting career.

2014 - Increases your visibility

For the first time, all the regionals were broadcast in the CrossFit website.

crossfit games history

That year marked the end of an era. Rich Froning announced that regardless of his result at the Games, he would retire as an individual athlete. The last day of competition Froning won all events with a significant lead, closing his individual career in style.

The Games began with the Masters division. Before they were over, Castro added an extra day of individual competition by moving up on Wednesday. The athletes swam the ocean at Hermosa Beach Pier.

For the first time, it included a prize for all singles in the top 20. Also born were the titles of:

  • Rookie of the Year, which was won by Mat Fraser
  • Most Improved Athlete, which was won by Cassidy Lance.
  • Spirit of the Games received by Becca Voigt.

2013 - Pig and worm

all crossfit games

The Open made record participation so far with 138,000 participants. The duration was reduced to 5 weeks and 5 WODs.

At the Regionals, the athletes faced the WOD Jackie.

That year, the Masters competition included a Nancy among other events that were broadcasted by ESPN. When the masters competition was over, the singles competition got underway in order to use all the space in the sports center.

In this edition we saw two new elements:

  • Pig: very heavy structure that had to be rotated around the track.
  • Worm: set of 6 mini segments joined by a fabric and recreating the shape of a worm used by the teams.

Rich Fronining won the Games for the third consecutive time.being the first athlete to achieve this feat.

2012 - More competitive regionals

history crossfit games

The growth of the CrossFit community accelerated. Open participation reached 69,000 (43,000 more than in the previous year).

They increased the number of formations in L1.

This year the regionals were more, more repetitions, heavier bars and more demanding of skills. One of the events was Diane.

This year, an extra day was added to the competition, beginning at Wednesdays at U.S. Marine base Camp Pendleton. There the athletes faced 700 m swimming in the ocean with fins, 8 km cycling on uneven sandy terrain and more than 11 km of obstacle course through the mountain accumulating 427 meters of elevation gain.

On Thursday, the competition continued at the stadium.

2011 - The Reebok CrossFit Games

first reebok crossfit games

This season the 10-year sponsorship of the Games by the multinational company Reebok. This fact makes possible the considerable increase of the economic prize offered to the winners of the competition. The following are distributed a total of 1 million dollars. Individual winners have $250,000 in prize money.

The Open6 WODs in 6 weeks (March 15 to May 1) in which more than 26,000 athletes participated worldwide.

The best 60 (30 women and 30 men) and 30 teams from each regionIn addition, they won invitations to participate in the next phase, the Regionals.

In total there were 17 regionals around the world with 6 events over 3 days of competition (from May 27 to June 19).

Only the best competed at the CrossFit Games July 29-31 at Home Depot Center, California and they are broadcast for the first time on ESPN increasing the exposure of the sport.

2010 - New location in Home Depot Center

crossfit games 2010

To the Regionals a preliminary qualifying phase is added, the Sectionals.

El Rancho remains small and the competition is moved to Home Depot Centera professional sports center in Los Angeles (California).

On July 16, the first event of the new CrossFit Games kicked off in honor of Amanda Miller.

For the first time introduces the Masters category in the competition.

2009 - 3rd year in Aromas

It was the explosion of the Games. What had started out as a local competition came to include a qualifying phase (the former Regionals) at different events around the world.

crossfit games 2009

An estimated 4,000 fans attended to watch the competition in person.

You can get an idea of what the Games were like in their early days at the Ranch with these images:

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2008 - Participants multiply

By the next edition, the Games had gained in popularity and some 300 athletes participated.

crossfit games 2008 logo

That year the athletes performed a variant of the famous benchmark Fran.

crossfit games 2008 race

As a curiosity, that year the need to fully extend the hip was specified for the burpee to be valid.

burpee crossfit games 2008
incorrect and correct burpee

That year the famous Jason Khalipa appeared out of nowhere and beat the favored candidate Josh Everett.

khalipa crossfit games 2008

2007 - The inaugural CrossFit Games

This year marks the first Games at Rancho de Aromas (California), owned by the family of Dave Castrowho has been the director of the CF Games until 2022.

history crossfit games 2007

They gather about 70 athletes in total who were chosen randomly, without qualifiers.

The founder of CrossFit, Greg Glassman always believed that athletes should be able to do whatever task they were given and with that philosophy they randomly chose the first WOD of the competition. They had written different exercises on slips of paper that they had put in garbage cans.

crossfit games 2007

When randomly extracting papers the result was:
1000 m of row
5 rounds
25 pull-ups
7 push jerks