CrossFit Releases 2023 CrossFit Games Competition Rulebook for Upcoming Season

The November 15 release date is the earliest distribution of the rulebook ahead of a Games season.

On November 15, 2022, CrossFit HQ released the first iteration of the official competition rulebook for the 2023 season. The November 15 release is not just the earliest the rulebook has been released but also unofficially signals the start of the upcoming season as the community and athletes alike start digesting the rules and start mapping their season.

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You can check out the complete rulebook and then keep reading for detailed information on specific sections that saw changes for 2023. Note: The following doesn’t encompass every change made.

1.08 — Open Registration – Region Selection

During the registration process for the 2023 CrossFit Games Open, all participating athletes will provide information to establish their competitive region. Athletes will remain assigned to this region throughout the competition season.

The regions are based on citizenship, specifically the country they are a citizen of by the close of the first Open score submission window.

Based on their residency, citizens of the United States and Canada will be further divided into two regions, North America East and North America West. Affiliated athletes in the U.S. and Canada will establish residency based on the affiliate the athlete attends (and selects during registration). Unaffiliated athletes in the U.S. and Canada will establish residency based on their home address. North American athletes living outside of North America will be placed in the North America East region.

1.09 — Open Registration – Region Selection- Uncommon Situations & Petitions for Exemption 

There will be a chance for athletes to file for an exemption to the citizenship standards outlined in 1.08. That is covered in this section where CrossFit lists the exemptions.

Military personnel will compete within the country where they hold citizenship. United States and Canadian military will be placed in the North America East region.

If an athlete has dual or multiple citizenship, they have until the close of the first week of the Open to declare which country they will represent the rest of the season.

Suppose an athlete resides in a region outside of their country of citizenship and they believe they may advance to the in-person Semifinal stage. In that case, they may petition for an exemption to be placed in a different competition region. If granted, beginning at the Open, the athlete’s competitive region and country flag on the leaderboard will be changed for the duration of the season.

Exemptions must be filed with CrossFit by February 1, 2023. Minimum requirements for an exemption include, but are not limited to:

  • Proof of sustained residency. If an athlete has been living in a different country since February 16, 2020.
  • Extreme financial hardship to travel to the expected Semifinal.
  • Political hardship restricting travel to the expected Semifinal.
  • Restrictions from attending their expected Semifinal due to immigration or visa status.

1.11 — Open Registration – Adaptive Divisions

There are 16 divisions for Adaptive athletes. Athletes wishing to compete in an Adaptive division can select their division as part of the registration process. Competitors must be at least 14 years old as of July 14, 2023. For these divisions, athletes must submit the Adaptive Competition Eligibility Form (ACEF), and register for the division that best represents their ability.

1.13 — Open Registration – Teams

For teams competing during the Open, Quarterfinals, Semifinals, or the Games, their athletes must be registered and listed on the team roster before the close of the first Open test

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Once the first Open test has closed and an athlete has been assigned to a team roster, this athlete may not compete for any other team during the season, even if another team from the same affiliate qualifies to compete in the next stage. The team manager’s responsibility is to ensure team athletes are properly registered.

1.14 — Team Eligibility Requirements

Only licensed CrossFit affiliate gyms in good standing may register a team with those requirements for being on a team being the following:

  • Each athlete must be registered on the affiliate’s team roster by Feb. 20, 2023, 5 p.m. Pacific Time.
  • Each athlete must submit a score for all of the Open tests.
  • Each Open test must be performed in the same physical location as the team’s affiliate.

1.20 — Open Tests – Score Submissions and Validation

Scores must be submitted by 5 p.m. PT each week. Any submission received after the 5 p.m. PT deadline will not be accepted for any reason. The most significant thing is that CrossFit states that it is the athlete’s sole responsibility to ensure the timely and successful submission of test scores or videos each week. Any of their submissions that are incomplete will not be accepted. Each week, scores must be submitted by Monday at 5 p.m. PT.

CrossFit now reserves the right to extend the score submission deadline due to unforeseen circumstances. If the deadline is extended, athletes can complete or redo the lifts or tests within the new time frame provided.

1.36 — Open – Drug Testing – Adaptive Athletes

Any Adaptive athlete who finished in the top five in the Vision, Short Stature, Seated With Hip Function, Seated Without Hip Function, and Intellectual divisions may be subject to drug testing.

2.04 — Quarterfinals – Selecting a Competition Roster – Teams 

During the registration process for Quarterfinals, teams will need to declare their Competition Team roster. Team managers can only select athletes from their Open team roster to move forward on the Competition Team Roster. A Competition Team roster will consist of the following:

  • A maximum of six athletes: Three men and three women
  • A minimum of four athletes: Two men and two women

These athletes will represent the team for the remainder of the season. Athletes in the Individual and Age Group divisions are eligible to be a member of a Competition Team roster. 

Any athlete who has qualified and chooses to compete in the Individual Quarterfinal is eligible to be listed on the Competition Team roster should they decide to compete in both divisions.

Once the team manager has selected the members of the team, the Competition Team roster is locked for the remainder of the season. Only the athletes on the Competition Team Roster will be eligible to compete for the team during Quarterfinals, Semifinals, and the Games.

4.01 — Semifinals – Individuals and Teams

The most notable information from this section is that the 2023 Semifinals will take place over three consecutive weekends in May and June (between May 18 and June 4).

4.02 — Semifinals Invitation Process – Eligible Individual Athletes 

The video review process from the Individual Quarterfinal will be completed by March 27, 2023. Semifinal invitations will be emailed to each region’s top men and women by March 28, 2023.

4.04 — Semifinals Invitations Process – Eligible Teams

The Team Quarterfinal video review process is to be completed by April 10, 2023, at 5 p.m. PT. Semifinal invitations will be emailed to the top teams in each region by April 12, 2023.

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By competition region, teams will receive an invitation to Semifinals in the following manner:

  • North America East: Top 40 teams
  • North America West: Top 40 teams
  • Europe: Top 40 teams
  • Oceania: Top 20 teams
  • Asia: Top 20 teams
  • South America: Top 20 teams
  • Africa: Top 20 teams

4.11 — Semifinals – Individuals and Teams – Advancement 

Each Semifinal competition will have a minimum number of individual qualifying positions as follows:

  • North America East: Top 5 men/5 women
  • North America West: Top 5 men/5 women
  • Europe: Top 5 men/5 women
  • Oceania: Top 3 men/3 women
  • Asia: Top 2 men/2 women
  • South America: Top 2 men/2 women
  • Africa:Top man/woman

Semifinals may be awarded additional qualifying positions based on the strength-of-field present at the competition. The men’s and women’s divisions at each Semifinal will be evaluated separately when awarding additional qualifying positions. The total number of individual qualifying positions for each Semifinal will be announced before onsite registration at each Semifinal.

The number of qualifying positions for teams will be as follows:

  • North America East: Top 10 teams
  • North America West: Top 10 teams
  • Europe: Top 10 teams
  • Oceania: Top 3 teams
  • Asia: Top 2 teams
  • South America: Top 2 teams
  • Africa: 1 team

There will not be additional team qualifying positions based on strength-of-field for the team division.

Unanswered Questions

Many questions are left unanswered with the rulebook chief among them is the “strength of field” criteria and also the prize purse for the 2023 season, most notably the Semifinals nad the Games. 

The rulebook has traditionally seen many variations and additions as the season progresses to address those unanswered questions. We will continue to monitor for updates to those questions as well as try to gather further information from CrossFit.

The 2023 CrossFit Games season begins on February 16 with the start of the Open.