The workouts are ever changing, but there's consistency across the field. Athletes within the same division compete in the same workouts in the Open, Regionals, and the Games.
This section explains how the CrossFit Games season works at each of its three stages. We do not announce the workouts until just before the competition begins.
STAGE 1: The Open
Feb. 25 - March 28, 2016
Everyone in the world is invited to compete in five workouts over five weeks, posting their scores online in real time.
Every Open workout needs to be validated to count. Competitors will have two options to validate their performances. They can workout at a local affiliate where they will be judged in person, or they can submit a video of their performance to the entire community. There is no limit to the number of attempts an athlete can make, provided the score submitted prior to the close of each week.
Competitors will be ranked both worldwide and by region. The fittest individual athletes and teams from each region will earn invitations to one of eight regionals. This is the first chance athletes will have to establish their international standings.
Top masters athletes in five age divisions are invited to compete in the Masters Qualifier (April 21 - 25). From there, the top 20 are invited to compete at the CrossFit Games.
The Open is a truly open competition. Anyone from anywhere can participate.
The next step is the regionals, where the virtual competition goes live.
STAGE 2: Regionals
May 13 - 29, 2016
Over the course of three days, athletes will perform brutal combinations of workouts to test the range and depth of their capabilities. The workouts are the same across regionals. Everyone around the world will be able to compare their favorite newcomers with Games vets, event for event, second for second, pound for pound. For fans of the sport, this is another opportunity to speculate what the future holds at the Games.
Besides the stiff competition, regionals are a lively spectator experience. Each year, fans come in droves and cross borders to support their favorite athletes, family members and friends. The same crowds, who settled into the dirt hillside of the Ranch with a beer and a love for CrossFit, enjoy the Aromas-like competition at regionals. From the searing heat of Texas to the pouring rains of the New England, these die-hard fans will always show up to support the community.
With the tremendous growth of CrossFit around the world, the competition gets tougher each year, with phenomenal athletes coming out of the woodwork and veteran competitors honing their skills one step further. The regional competitions have become as tough as the way the Games used to be in the early days.
The athletes and fans know, it’s no small feat to make it anywhere close to the regional podium. The fans come to see their athletes, “marred by dust and sweat and blood,” striving valiantly for their best. The athletes come to prove their fitness on a higher level of competition, with the dream of qualifying to the Games in the back of everyone's mind.
STAGE 3: The Games
July 19 - 24, 2016
After two qualifying steps, the season culminates in the CrossFit Games, held at the StubHub Center in Carson, California. At the Games, hundreds of thousands of participants will have been whittled down to the world's fittest 40 men, 40 women, 40 teams, 40 teenagers, and 200 masters. The stakes could not be higher; athletes will be battling for a piece of the 1.7 million dollar prize purse and the title Fittest on Earth.
At the Games, all bets are off. The slate will be wiped clean from the Open and Regionals, and the athletes will confront multiple unforeseen challenges. These events will test them across broad time and modal domains, potentially involving everything from classics such as running and squats, to more exotic movements such as climbing and odd-object lifting. The athletes will complete short sprint-type events, medium-duration challenges, and longer tests of endurance. In the end, the fittest will have distinguished themselves from their peers through consistently excellent performance across the weekend’s events.
Beyond the individual competition, teams from around the world will work together in hopes of winning the Affiliate Cup. The high degree of strategy and teamwork involved make this a very popular category of competition.
The masters are divided into five male and female age categories, 40-44, 45-49, 50-54, 55-59, and 60+. Masters competitors’ impressive performances prove fitness truly is a lifelong endeavor and inspire all with their passion for CrossFit.