Are you ready to test yourself again?
That special time of the year for every CrossFit athlete is coming soon! Whether you have been training for long or you just joined a gym, this is your opportunity to test yourself, get immediate feedback and keep growing.
2023 CrossFit Open Dates
What Are the 2023 CrossFit Open Dates?
Mark your calendars, the CrossFit Open starts on February 16, 2023.
What is the CrossFit Open?
The CrossFit Open is a three-week worldwide competition that is open to every athlete, regardless of their fitness level or ability. This is an opportunity to meet personal goals, fight for standout performances and embrace the spirit of competition.
In the CrossFit training philosophy, competitiveness is one the biggest values and this is mirrored in the CrossFit Open in two levels. The personal one, where athletes do their best to beat a previous personal record (PR) or compete with their gym buddies. The second level is for more advanced athletes who push themselves to their limits of resistance and performance, and compete against athletes around the world. This is why the CrossFit Open is one of the biggest fitness competitions in the history of sports and the world’s premier test to find the Fittest on Earth.
The CrossFit Open season includes several workouts that cover most aspects of CrossFit: strength, gymnastics, endurance, flexibility, power and speed. The workouts are designed for the everyday CrossFitter but challenging enough for the most elite athletes.
The CrossFit Open follows the same structure during the three-week competition. There is a workout released on the CrossFit Games website each Thursdays at 12 PM (Pacific time) and athletes have until the next Monday at 5 PM to record and submit their score online in the CrossFit Open Leaderboard. The leaderboard is searchable by continent, country, or user-generated hashtags. Countries are assigned to athletes based on citizenship.
The CrossFit Open is the first stage of fitness testing in the CrossFit Games season. Then, the best ones are invited to participate in the Quarterfinals, Semifinals, and, finally, the CrossFit Games. The Games finals are the ultimate test of fitness.
Who can participate at the CrossFit Open?
Literally anyone who is at least 14 years old can sign up and join the Open season. There are special divisions for age groups and adaptive athletes. The adaptive divisions were introduced to the CrossFit Games during the 2021 season and offer adaptive athletes a chance to compete against athletes with similar disabilities.
There are nine age group divisions by gender that include teenagers and masters:
- Boys and Girls 14-15
- Boys and Girls 16-17
- Men and Women 35-39
- Men and Women 40-44
- Men and Women 45-49
- Men and Women 50-54
- Men and Women 55-59
- Men and Women 60-64
- Men and Women 65+
Plus, there is the Individual division that is normally formed by athletes that are in the age of 18 to 34 years old, but actually any athlete above 14 can qualify for the Individual division.
If you enjoy group workouts, good news! There is the Team division that are groups of 2 male and 2 female athletes who train in the same CrossFit gym or affiliate. The Team competition is also known as the Affiliate Cup, you can learn more about the 2022 Affiliate Cup here.
The 2022 CrossFit Open Leaderboard allowed for sub-leaderboards (hashtag-based) for specific groups of athletes like teachers, soldiers, healthcare workers, firefighters, college students, law enforcement officers, LGBTQ+ athletes, sober athletes and tons of other professions, interests, and groups. With customizable leaderboards, CrossFitters are able to track the collective progress of their communities building stronger bonds.
What if I can’t RX or do the prescribed workout?
The workouts programmed during the Open are no different than those you perform at your gym. If you have been attending classes regularly you most probably are well-equipped and ready to take on the Open.
As for the classes, all the divisions in the Open, but for the Adaptative, offer three levels of workouts: Scaled and RX are the primary divisions, but there is also a Foundations division for new or untrained competitors. As in most gyms, Scaled is a modification of RX, but still a challenge; it includes less advanced gymnastic movements and lighter weights. The RX is described as the prescribed workout. This is the most challenging option, yet many athletes move from Scaled to RX as they progress from year to year.
Don’t worry too much about RXing or not. The model of the competition is very flexible, you can choose each week independently whether you will do that week’s workout in a Scaled version or RX. The mix could have a negative impact on your overall placement, but you will be able to challenge yourself and go for RX when you feel comfortable. Or, you could do like me, and do all the workouts in the RX division, who cares if you spend all the time trying to get your chest to the bar and by a magical effort you perform your first ever!
By offering these 2 options for each workout, it’s easier to find a place where you can be challenged but not discouraged. Either way, go for it and do your best, the results are only leading to more growth.
Where can I do the CrossFit Open?
Athletes can do the workouts from anywhere: at their affiliates, in a home gym, even in a park, when possible.
The CrossFit Games rules allows for uploading a video of your performance to the CrossFit Games website through your CrossFit account. The score validation of the online video will be taken directly by the CrossFit internal review team. If you perform at your affiliate, they are in charge of judging and validating your score. Heads up, even after you submit your score through an online video, you can still get “no reps”, you need to respect the standards the same as everyone else.
Why should you join the CrossFit Open?
So why should you do this if you aren’t going to the CrossFit Games? There are many benefits to joining the CrossFit Open, independent of where you finish in the Leaderboard.
Here a few that we think are the best ones:
- It can add meaning and purpose to your training. The Open is the event where many athletes achieve important firsts. From first pull-ups and muscle-ups to an increase in max loadings, toes-to-bars, handstand push-ups, double-unders, etc.
- The Open will also open the doors for interesting data on your athletic performance. This can be a guide for setting realistic goals for the following year.
- It can be the booster you need. After competing, athletes find more motivation to achieve their fitness goals. Rates of attendance at the gyms increase in both classes and open gym seasons.
- The Open brings your gym’s community closer together. Your gym community will gather to test, retest, and ultimately celebrate everyone’s efforts and successes. The Open is an opportunity for the community to get fitter together.
- Even if you have been doing CrossFit for just a couple of weeks, the Open is an opportunity to set a performance baseline for CrossFit and you can retest next year to track your progress.
Final Thoughts from the Barbell Beauties
The CrossFit Open is more than the athletes ranking at the top of the leaderboard. The CrossFit Open is also, and mostly, about the athletes who, with self-determination, are thriving in a highly challenging environment. There are always fantastic stories of dedication and perseverance showing impressive performances at all fitness levels and stories of communities coming together to celebrate its members’ efforts, regardless of the scores. Join the CrossFit Open to get inspired and challenged to overcome your weaknesses (mental and physical) and become a better version of yourself.
Giuliana is a yoga instructor and Crossfitter from Peru who is currently living in Chiang Mai, Thailand with her Crossfit Coach (and husband) Tim.