With the 2016 CrossFit® Games Open quickly approaching (16.1 begins on February 25th), box members around the world are faced with the yearly question, “Should I sign up?” While the answer and reasons will vary from person to person, here are some key things you should remind your athletes this year to help them make their final decision.
1. The Open is for everyone
With the new structure to the Open that was introduced in 2015, anyone with any level of fitness is eligible to participate and compete. This includes the new Scaled and Teens divisions, along with the already present Rxand Masters divisions. With these options available, the excuse of not being able to perform certain movements is no longer valid. It also levels the playing field a bit, so that a 2x/week, mostly sedentary individual can compete with athletes of similar fitness levels, just as Rich Froning, Ben Smith and Mat Fraser can battle for that top spot on the leaderboard.
2. It’s a great community builder
What other time can all of your athletes prepare, encourage and participate together in such a large competition? The Open is an opportunity to bring members together that may not otherwise know each other, cheer each other on, and support each other while putting everything on the line to test their fitness. Many boxes use this time of year to put together mini-events within the box, inviting friends and family to see what this whole “community” thing is all about. Not only does it increase camaraderie and friendship amongst members, it’s a great opportunity for non-members to see exactly what the hype is about. Bring people together, push yourselves, and have fun. This is what the community is about.
3. Demonstrate the true purpose of the community
It’s no debate that the image of the CrossFit® community is largely portrayed by what people see when they tune into ESPN in late July every year. The Games are great, and it’s awesome to see these elite athletes throw down in all of their chiseled, sweat-covered glory. It provides motivation, entertainment, and inspires the masses to get off the couch and do something to improve their health and fitness. But The Games are a tiny drop in the bucket of what the community really is. 99% of box members won’t make The Games, and that’s totally fine.
We need to reinforce with members what they’re really showing up and sweating for. It’s for the firefighter who puts his or her life on the line every day for others. It’s for the high schooler who wants to be a college athlete. It’s for the grandma and grandpa who want to play with their grandkids in the park. The Open is a chance for each individual to see how their fitness has improved year after year, and how each day that they show up at the box is another step in the right direction.
We wish luck to all of our customers and their members competing in the Open this year. We are looking forward to hearing your stories of success!