History of CrossFit

In this article we recover the history of CrossFit grouped by years.


Greg Glassman seeks to improve his capabilities

young greg glassman

A gymnast at the time, Glassman, then only 18 years old, was looking for a form of training that would allow him to improve his physical abilities. Creates the first CrossFit concepts in Santa Cruz, Calif.. It is then that he applies to his clients a training method that consists of mixing fundamental movement exercises with sprints.


Opens a gym in Santa Cruz

First CrossFit gym opens in Santa Cruz and is hired to train the police department.

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CrossFit Inc. is founded

Greg Glassman co-founded CrossFit Inc. with his wife Lauren Jenai. and CrossFit North in Seattle becomes the first affiliate.
When he created the logo, Glassman wanted to combine the idea of laughter with the suffering of training. Hence, the vomiting clown known as "Uncle Pukie" was born.


CrossFit.com is launched

The CrossFit.com website is published, where you can consult the WODThe site also offers training videos, exercise demonstrations and a forum where you can interact with other users.


CrossFit Journal

On April 1, Greg Glassman published the first article in the CrossFit Journal called Foundations (fundamentals), with the purpose of defining CrossFit and inspiring and supporting the community.
The article became a key part of the Level 1 training guide used at the CrossFit Level 1 Seminar and is consulted by thousands of coaches.

In October of the same year, Greg publishes the article "What Is Fitness("What is Fitness?") and becomes the first person to articulate the principles of fitness in order to measure, observe and analyze the safety, efficacy and efficiency of a fitness program.


Affiliate program launched

CrossFit launches membership program for centers.


CrossFit ''Performing the common uncommonly well'' and rhabdomyolysis in the New York Times

Greg Glassman writes the article Virtuosity.
The New York Times publishes an article about "the CrossFit craze". They further explain the case of Brian Anderson, a user who suffered a serious back injury after the first WOD of kettlebell swings he made. He was diagnosed with rhabdomyolysis in the hospital. From there Uncle Rhabdo is bornthe clown in the illustration who is hooked up to a dialysis machine to change his blood.
Glassman said in this regard, "It can kill you...I've always been totally honest. If you can't stand to have your rings fall off and some neck breakage, we don't want you in our group."


Games are born

The CrossFit Games is the international competition held in the summer where competitors from all over the world fight to be the "Fittest on Earth".
Dave Castro, who trained under Glassman's supervision, proposes a live competition offering his family's "Ranch" as a location.
The prize started with 500$ and now 300,000$ are awarded. for the fittest man and woman on the planet.
After a few years, Dave Castro confessed in a podcast, "Greg Glassman saved my life. He gave me the opportunity to contribute in another way and to have work and life secured."


The number of affiliates explodes

More than 1,000 members to CrossFit worldwide and the rate of applications is 2-3 per day.
- The Games award becomes 5000$.


Reebok contract and change of scenery

The CrossFit Games are moving to a new location: the Home Depot Centre in Los Angeles, California. For the first time they can be seen live on the live.crossfit.com website.
- The award becomes 25.000$
CrossFit signs a 10-year contract with the sports brand Reebok.


El Open is born

Athletes from all over the world compete during 6 weeks and 6 wods, uploading their scores to a website that can be consulted by anyone to achieve a place.
More of 26,000 participate in the first edition, making this online competition in the biggest sporting event in history.

Competitors have 2 ways to validate their result:
- Option 1: Perform the WOD on an affiliate and be judged live.
- Option 2: Upload a video so that it can be evaluated and viewed by the entire community.

In the first year under the Reebok brand, the prize in the Games increases from 25,000 to 250,000$.


Greg Glassman divorce

Glassman gained full control of the company following his separation from Lauren Jenai, who tried unsuccessfully to sell her share to a third party but it was Glassman who eventually bought it for 16 million.


CrossFit denounces the NSCA

CrossFit denounces the National Strength and Conditioning Association. (NSCA) for publishing a study claiming that 9 out of 54 people doing CrossFit had to drop out due to injury. CrossFit claimed the information was false and intended "to try to scare participants away from CrossFit."


War with CocaCola

CrossFit uses the social network Twitter to show its position against sugary drinks and their direct relationship with the deterioration of the population's health.


Resolution NSCA complaint

- The court agrees with CrossFit that the injury data was false but denies that the NSCA had a commercial interest. It also does not find that the study was defamatory since the NSCA stopped supporting it.
- More than 13,000 members worldwide.


CrossFit denounces the NSCA once again.

CrossFit is once again suing the NSCA after it was admitted that documentation was falsified with the intent to injure. Despite receiving 74000$ in legal costs CrossFit persists with new lawsuits.


Last year with regionals

This year there were 9 Regionals (a combination of 18 regions), a live competition to which only the best of the Open were admitted and which granted a direct pass to the Games.


Complete changeover to the GAMES format

Greg Glassman eliminates Regionals and instead creates the Sanctionals (competitions that give access to Games but organized by partners). Creates the National Champions (the best of the Open in each country) so that each country has at least one representative in the Games.
The CrossFit Games 2019 becomes the Games with the most countries represented and the largest number of athletes (+250 individual athletes) in history.
- NSCA is ordered to pay CrossFit $4 million in damages.


The tweet sentencing Glassman

In June he makes a tweet responding to another account on a Black Lives Matter issue in which he says "it's FLOYD-19". This ignites the CrossFit community and at the same time several accusations of sexism and abuse of power by Glassman within the company come to light. A huge number of athletes, workers, boxes and sponsors decide to publicly turn their backs on him. In this very happy situation in which the future of the brand was put in doubt, Glassman is forced to sell the company to Eric Rozaan affiliate and computer genius.
Roza's arrival brings a breath of fresh air and his changes have finally restored the lost confidence.
With the pandemic Games 2020 will be carried out in two phases. The first online and the second in person with only 5 male and 5 female athletes at Dave Castro's Ranch.
The contract between Reebok and CrossFit ends.


Roza recovers the "Regionals

- In 2021, the Open is reduced to 3 weeks and once completed, 2 more weeks (Quarterfinals) are added for the 10% of the highest placed athletes only.
- Those who pass this phase move on to the 10 Semifinals, which will be face-to-face competitions to be held on 6 continents.
- A new category is added in Games: Adaptive


Mat Fraser retires

The 5-time CrossFit Games champion announces his retirement in a letter to his followers. He will continue to be linked to the sport but in other facets as a coach in his "HWPO" programming. He launches "321Podium", a sports supplementation brand, and sponsors Justin Medeiros as the first athlete.


NOBULL becomes new Games sponsor

The American apparel and sneaker brand becomes a sponsor of the CrossFit Games 2021.


Tia Clair Toomey and Justin Medeiros win the CrossFit Games

Tia Clair Toomey wins the CrossFit Games for the 5th consecutive time. After the withdrawal of Mat Fraser, Justin Medeiros is the first to win the CrossFit Games. Some people are already talking about the Medeiros Era.


Eric Roza fires Dave Castro

With the Open just weeks away, Dave Castro, creator of the CrossFit Games, is fired by CrossFit's new owner.


Dave Castro returns to CrossFit

The creator of the CrossFit Games returns to the company that fired him and his new duties will be to work directly with the affiliated boxes.


Don Faul appointed CEO

Eric Roza appoints Don Faul, new CEO of CrossFit. The former U.S. Marine Corps platoon commander has worked at companies such as Pinterest, Meta and Google.


CrossFit Games 2022

Tia Clair Toomey makes history by winning her sixth CrossFit Games and Justin Medeiros repeats for the second time. Rumor has it that Toomey may retire soon, but the athlete has not confirmed it.


tia clair toomey pregnancy

Tia Clair Toomey announces pregnancy

Despite assuring that she would participate in the 2022-2023 season to try for her seventh title, on December 24 she announces on Instagram that she is pregnant and will not participate.

This means there will be new face on the Fittest on Earth title by 2023.

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