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On February 5th CrossFit® released a statement announcing the start of 2019 Open and the alterations in format this year. Although a tweet from CrossFit warns us “It will be different”, the changes to the event don’t have to affect how, or if, you plan to run the Open at your gym. Mike Burnes, Owner of CrossFit Rail Trail in Hudson, MA has 5 reasons why community-promoting traditions like running The Open at your gym should live on:


1. The Open builds community

Nothing builds your gym’s community quite like the shared suffering that occurs during a CrossFit workout. From the cheers and the high fives to your members pushing each other beyond perceived limits. The atmosphere of the Open takes this environment even further with its competitive nature including scorecards and judges. It’s also a time when all of your members from students or moms to competitive athletes come together and find commonality. The Open is known for its inclusivity, encouraging participation from the newbie CrossFitter to the Games athlete.

The bonds and friendships formed during The Open are the essences of what makes CrossFit stand out amongst other fitness communities–it’s how CrossFit makes fitness fun. Maybe you haven’t been community building through events lately, or maybe the New Year saw an influx of new members. Either way, the Open is a great excuse to break the routine and bring everyone together. Community building events like the Open are essential in improving your member experience.


2. The Open encourages goal setting (and achieving!)

People always seem to push more and do more than they thought they could under pressure and while being cheered on by an audience. Whether it’s achieving a new movement, lifting a heavier weight or some other personal record that your members never believed they were capable of doing, hosting the Open at your gym has a unique way of making the impossible happen. This phenomenon, oft referred to as “The magic of the Open” inspires great events at your gym. What better way to increase member satisfaction than to foster an environment like the Open for setting goals, breaking barriers and setting new personal records?


3. The Open renews motivation amongst members

The Open occurs during a critical time for your gym, the New Year. With New Year resolutions, health, fitness, and weight loss goals peaking, it’s the perfect opportunity to get your members focused on their goals. As the saying goes, “Summer bodies are built in the winter.” With the Holidays behind us and new members as well as renewed motivation in front of us, the Open is positioned perfectly to motivate a commitment to fitness and diet amongst your members as they look ahead to warmer weather.


4. The Open provides constantly varied programming

The Open provides not only 5 workouts programmed by official CrossFit HQ staff but it also inspires 5+ weeks of programming variation while your members prepare for, and recover from the intensity of the event. Changing it up from your normal programming to prepare for the Open workouts allows for variety in your member’s fitness routine. This deviation from the norm will help your members challenge plateaus and leave no room for boredom. It’s also an opportunity for your members to practice high-level movements that they may not normally work on, as well as improve other areas of weakness.

Additionally, the carefully crafted Open workouts, equipped with demonstration videos and judging requirements, provide an opportunity for your coaches to reinstill movement standards and evaluate safety and efficiency amongst your members.


5. The Open creates an opportunity for performance tracking

You can organize and run your own Open event at your gym easily through Triib Events, Online Competitions. We provide the platform for scoring and tracking, as well as input the main site workouts for you. All you need to do is bring your athlete community together for a good time! Your members will be able to compare their performance for years to come as well as retest workouts months or years later to measure their progress all in one place.



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About the author:

Luke Handley