Warning: count(): Parameter must be an array or an object that implements Countable in /home/barbellshrugged/public_html/daily/wp-content/plugins/q-and-a/inc/functions.php on line 252

Leveraging the Crossfit Open – Barbell Business

Photo: PaleoPam.com

Photo: PaleoPam.com

Warning: count(): Parameter must be an array or an object that implements Countable in /home/barbellshrugged/public_html/daily/wp-content/plugins/q-and-a/inc/functions.php on line 252

Podcast links: iTunesStitcher

There’s no doubt about it, the CrossFit Games has taken the world by storm. All you have to do is look at the numbers. Here’s how athlete participation in the Games has grown year to year.

Screen Shot 2015-03-14 at 10.31.53 AM

That’s impressive growth, but the movement only seems to be picking up steam now.

Regardless of you’re feeling towards the Open, the truth is that members of your gym are registered and will be perform the WOD’s with or without your support.

If you’ve chosen to boycott, don’t be surprised when your athletes go to rival gyms to be scored by your competition. Also, you really shouldn’t be surprised if they decide to stay.

Your alternative is to embrace the Open and transform the event into a shared experience that your members will never forget.

Repost from @crossfit_santacruz: “Cara and Alicia after completing 351 and 338 respectively on 15.3 #crossfitsantacruz”

A photo posted by The CrossFit Games (@crossfitgames) on


Most gyms will just run classes through the Open WOD, as if it was just another day in the gym. But this is an opportunity to separate yourself from the crowd and bring your community together. You MUST take advantage.

This goes far beyond your gym community. You must reach outside of the familiar walls to pull in friends, family members, co-workers, and every local garage gym warrior. Just imagine having a “Friday Night Lights” style event at your gym, where athletes go head-to-head in an all out battle against themselves, their competitors, and the global Crossfit community.

There are endless options for making your event exceptional. Here are a few easy ideas…

    • Have local healthy food trucks support the event by providing everyone with delicious, convenient meals.
    • Rally support from local businesses. Provide athletes with donated prizes or gift certificates, and arrange for local media to cover the event. Your athletes will LOVE that.
    • Hire a legitimate photographer and videographer to capture everything. You’ve created an amazing experience. The last thing you want to do is waste it. Capture and share that experience.


I personally witnessed an event like this last year at CrossFit Invictus. It was every bit as invigorating and spectator as being at the Games finals. That gym has cultivated an unmatched sense of pride and loyalty.

You can do the same.

As a final note, once you know that you can generate an exciting atmosphere in your gym, why wouldn’t you keep it up year round? The party doesn’t have to stop once the Open is finished. Why not create your own regionals and finals events to find the fittest man & woman in your gym?

You could plan a weightlifting or powerlifting meet, something the gym could train for together. Better still, you could simply make sure that your athletes are having a blast and feeling apart of something every single day of the week, year round.

That will make the biggest possible impact on your business. Just try it and see.

You’ve got two more weeks. Make them count.


3 Responses to “Leveraging the Crossfit Open – Barbell Business”

  1. Cyril White

    Thank you for all you guys do! I am a recent CrossFit affiliate owner and you have helped make our new business so much easier to start due to all of the great information you provide. Many of the tips I have learned and put into place at our box have been the difference in getting and keeping new members!

    I had experience training with two other boxes prior to starting my own and each did the OPEN workouts the day after they were announced and I thought that’s just what you were supposed to do. So when we started our box that’s just what we did and I can’t imagine doing it any other way. It’s just one day and provides a little more “constantly varied” and excitement to what we do. Sure there are members who could care less about it but aside from watching our coaches act as judges to them it’s still pretty much business as usual.

    We have had several athletes come to our box just because we were doing the OPEN workouts and their boxes weren’t, which just floored me but good for us and bad for them! IT’S AWESOME!

    Thanks again!

    Cyril S. White
    Country Spirit CrossFit
    Dexter, Michigan

  2. Carlos

    I don’t have a gym, but I’m going to use this concept for my own business.


Leave a Reply

Basic HTML is allowed. Your email address will not be published.

Subscribe to this comment feed via RSS