On April 13, the organizers of the CrossFit Games took to social media to announce that they are looking at alternative possibilities on how to crown their champions later this year.
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The #CrossFitGames begin on Wednesday, July 29, and conclude on Sunday, Aug. 2. The event welcomes national champions and top athletes from over 127 countries to compete for the title of Fittest on Earth. It will be streamed live and available via a variety of media outlets worldwide. CrossFit will continue to monitor circumstances globally in the coming months and coordinate with Madison, Wisconsin, our host community, to communicate information regarding our event. The CrossFit Games are a unique community event. What began on a small ranch in California has evolved into an internationally renowned competition and festival with commensurate attention paid to athlete and spectator safety. If circumstances require it, the CrossFit Games have existing medical and emergency action plans that have been developed and continuously updated over the previous 13 seasons. During that time, #CrossFit has produced over 150 global competitions, each with unique challenges. At this time, with the CrossFit Games more than four months away, event planning procedures include patient observation of the coronavirus (COVID-19). If circumstances closer to the event require action, our teams will coordinate with local authorities and share relevant event information as appropriate. CrossFit, along with our hosts, looks forward to welcoming you to the best edition of the CrossFit Games to date. #SeeyouinMadison.
“The Fittest on Earth will be crowned. All options for hosting the 2020 Reebok CrossFit Games are being explored.”
The 2020 CrossFit Games is still scheduled to take place from July 29th through August 2nd in Madison, Wisconsin. Some slots for Games athletes have been determined through the Open, which took place last October, and some of the Sanctional events that took place before the pandemic began to make its international impact.
The Fittest on Earth will be crowned. All options for hosting the 2020 Reebok CrossFit Games are being explored.
— The CrossFit Games (@CrossFitGames) April 13, 2020
While this announcement doesn’t necessarily mean that the event in its original form is being cancelled officially, it does indicate that the organizers are at least considering the possibility that changes will have to be made.
There are numerous issues that will have to be considered in making these decisions. The health and exposure risk for athletes, staff, and spectators is at the forefront of the conversation. Another issue is how athletes that are not yet qualified will be able to earn their opportunities to compete on the biggest stage in their sport.
The post was met with a mix of support and trepidation online. Justin LoFranco, founder of The Morning Chalk Up newsletter, posted the following statement on his brand’s Instagram account:
“Every sporting event is canceled and with so much widespread hardship facing the CrossFit community today and for the foreseeable future, it seems like the wrong time to be asking athletes, spectators, media, and vendors to put their health at risk. If HQ is thinking of doing something online, then they should just say that and let everyone breathe a collective sigh of relief and figure out how to proceed and salvage the situation as best they can.”
The Rogue Invitational is one event that has planned ahead and is still moving forward. Their event was scheduled to take place on June 13th and 14th at the Rogue Headquarters in Columbus, Ohio. They are now making their competition an online event. Other events may follow suit, but some contests may not be.
Another hurdle for the athletes will be training. Many of the gyms and boxes around the world have been shut down as a result of this pandemic. While some athletes have suitable training options at home, not all of them do. Will the athletes that are competing be at their best?
Finally, if the Games have to be pushed back to later in the year, how does that affect the 2021 season? BarBend will continue to share updates and news as it becomes available.
Featured Image: Instagram/crossfitgames