FINDING THE FITTEST ON EARTH™
The CrossFit Games are the ultimate proving grounds for the Fittest Man and Fittest Woman on Earth™ and are world-renowned as the definitive test of fitness. For the past 14 years, fans from around the world have attended the multi-day sporting event, streamed the competition online, or watched on ESPN, CBS, or a wide range of international broadcasts. The international field of play has included athletes from over 120 countries.
THE ULTIMATE TEST
The Games began in 2007 in Aromas, California, as the first competition to objectively measure fitness. From their inception, they have been unlike traditional sports such as track and field, gymnastics, weightlifting, or even decathlon — all specialist sports in which the events are known long in advance. Instead, athletes from around the world are tested against a variety of unannounced events, each with different movements, equipment, and time domains. Competitors are required to train for the unknown, and the scores of events have included distance swims, obstacle courses, 1-rep-max lifts, handstand walking, sled pushes, rope climbs, and odd-object carries.
The test has continually evolved. As top athletes began to train year-round for strength, speed, endurance, and skill, they were met with new tests each year that took them outside their comfort zone.
This year, a worldwide Open competition involving hundreds of thousands of competitors will allow the best athletes to advance through Quarterfinal and Semifinal rounds, culminating in the 15th edition of the CrossFit Games during the week of July 26, 2021, in Madison, Wisconsin.
THE WORLDWIDE OPEN
The road to the CrossFit Games starts with the worldwide Open, the largest participatory sporting event on Earth. During the three-week competition, one event is released online each Thursday, and athletes have four days to record and submit scores. Anyone who is at least 14 years old can sign up and join in the first stage of the CrossFit Games season with special divisions for teenagers, age groups, and adaptive athletes.
This year’s Open will be the most accessible in CrossFit history with options for participants to compete either at a local gym or at home with either basic equipment or no equipment.
The Open allows hundreds of thousands of individual athletes to quantify their performance and rank themselves with peers. Separate hashtag-based leaderboards are available for teachers, military service members, healthcare workers, firefighters, college students, law enforcement officers, and hundreds of other professions, interests, and groups. The leaderboard is also searchable by continent, country, or user-generated hashtags. For example, athletes can search for the fittest in South America or Switzerland. (Please note: Countries are assigned to athletes based on citizenship and assigned to teams based on location.)
An Affiliate Cup competition allows teams of athletes from each gym to compete with one another and potentially advance to the Quarterfinals, Semifinals, and Games.
The 2021 CrossFit Open starts on March 11. Worldwide registration opens on Jan. 7.
QUARTERFINALS, SEMIFINALS, AND LAST-CHANCE QUALIFIER
The top ten percent of individual Open athletes on each continent advance to the second stage of the competition, the Quarterfinals. The Quarterfinals is an online competition in which qualified athletes will compete over the course of a weekend for a chance to advance to the third stage, Semifinals.
Athletes who qualify for the Semifinals will be invited to one of 10 in-person events across six continents ensuring at least one athlete from each continent qualifies for the Games.
Prior to the CrossFit Games, there will be a last-chance qualifier for athletes who narrowly miss the cut in the Semifinals.
The top 25 percent of the total number of teams per continent (for continents with a minimum of at least 50 teams) will be eligible to advance from the Open to the Quarterfinals on their continent. Team rosters for the Quarterfinals must consist of four athletes, two men and two women, who will compete in the online competition.
The top teams in the Quarterfinals will advance to the Semifinals for a chance to earn their spot at the Games.
AGE-GROUP DIVISIONS: ONLINE QUALIFIER
Based on Open finish rank, the top 10 percent of age-group athletes worldwide in each division will advance to the Age-Group Online Qualifier to compete for a spot at the CrossFit Games. This includes masters athletes ages 35-60+, and teenage athletes ages 14-17. The top 20 athletes in the Online Qualifier from each division will earn a spot to compete at the CrossFit Games.
THE CROSSFIT GAMES
The season culminates with the ultimate test of fitness. A key element to a fair test of fitness is the unknown and unknowable. At each CrossFit Games competition, athletes engage in a series of challenges unknown to them until right before the events begin. The combination of highly trained athletes and unknown events makes for an explosive mix.
At this point in the season, the field has been whittled down from the hundreds of thousands of athletes in the Open to the top 40 men, 40 women, 240 masters athletes, 80 teenage athletes, and 40 teams from around the world. The CrossFit Games rank the world's fittest and determine who is the Fittest on Earth.
The CrossFit Games website will host the only official leaderboards for the Open, Online Qualifier, Quarterfinals, Semifinals, Last Chance Qualifier, and the Games.
The CrossFit Open and the CrossFit Games use a relative scoring system. In the Open, athletes are ranked on the leaderboard based on their performance relative to other athletes in their division, and are assigned a point value based on their placing in each event (e.g. 1st place = 1 point, 2nd place = 2 points). At the end of the Open, the athlete with the least amount of points is the overall winner.
The CrossFit Games use a scoring table, which can be found here. Each event is worth up to 100 points, and athletes earn points based on their finish. At the end of the Games weekend, the athlete with the most points is the winner and is crowned the Fittest on Earth.
In both the Open and the Games, ties will be broken by awarding the best position to the athlete who has the highest result in any single event. If athletes remain tied after this first tiebreaker, the process continues to their next highest single result, and so forth. More than one athlete can share an event rank, and each will earn the original point value. The athlete with the top performance across multiple events in a competition will be placed higher on the leaderboard.