Just days after announcing the formation of its first-ever team for the 2023 CrossFit season, PRVN Fitness revealed the addition of Thuri Helgadottir, Olivia Kerstetter, and Sasha Nievas as its newest athletes in the Individual division.
“This year, we made the tough decision to expand our roster to athletes outside of our immediate group here in Nashville,” Shane Orr, PRVN’s owner and co-founder, wrote to BarBend in an email. “While taking on additional remote athletes poses its own obstacles, we believe we are now in a position to make this [a] reality, while continuing to offer the very best in coaching and programming.”
The news comes just as the 2023 CrossFit Open begins on February 16. Get all the details below.
PRVN’s New Additions
The three new additions have a combined 10 CrossFit Games appearances as Individual athletes throughout their careers and add to an already deep roster of talent at PRVN. Here’s how the trio’s careers break down:
- Thuri Helgadottir — Seven CrossFit Games appearances (2012, 2015-2017, 2019, 2021-2022)
- Olivia Kerstetter — Two CrossFit Games appearances — Teen Division (2021 and 2022)
- Sasha Nievas — One CrossFit Games appearance (2021)
“This new group is extremely exciting for us as we expand globally,” Nic Johnston, CEO of PRVN Fitness, wrote to BarBend in an email. “Each of these individuals were chosen, not only for their athletic ability, but for the intangibles they bring as great fits for the PRVN Fitness brand, and even greater people. At the end of the day our mission remains the same… to offer our team everything they need to succeed at the highest level while creating an environment that allows for ultimate growth through key mental, physical, and emotional attributes.”
Here’s what each athlete brings to the table.
The native of Iceland has been the model of consistency throughout her CrossFit career. She has competed in seven Games, debuting in 2012 where she finished 35th. From her rookie campaign to the 2019 Games, she improved her placing every year she competed. Her ninth-place finish in 2019 is the high-water mark of her career heading into the 2023 season.
Since 2011, Helgadottir has also placed in the top 100 in the CrossFit Open every year, with the lone exception being in 2014 when she placed 107th worldwide. In 2017, she placed a career-best eighth in the Open and also was the second “Fittest Woman in Iceland,” the first of three occasions she finished as the runner-up in her home country.
In the inaugural CrossFit Games Worldwide Rankings, Helgadottir ranks 16th in the women’s division.
“Upon [moving back to Iceland in August 2022], I found that my training partners were following the PRVN program and I decided to join in,” Helgadottir wrote in a DM to BarBend. “I started training with Relentless, an app that allows me to customize my training sessions at the same time. […] Despite facing a setback with a back injury, the combination of PRVN and Relentless has been instrumental in my progress, leading to significant improvements in my overall fitness.”
The 17-year-old Kerstetter is considered the next teenage star of CrossFit. The former protege of Games veteran Jacob Heppner had already won the 14-15-year-old women’s division at the Games in 2021, thanks to four event wins. At the 2022 Games, she “aged up” to the 16-17-year-old division and dominated, winning the title by 170 points and placing in the top three in every event.
This win made her the sixth athlete to win titles in both teen divisions. She also became just the third female athlete to win the division as a 16-year-old.
Last season, Kerstetter placed 69th in the worldwide Open and then followed that up with an eighth-place finish in the North America Quarterfinals (19th worldwide), qualifying her for the Semifinals. She elected to compete in the teen division instead, leading to her title.
“Joining PRVN was an easy choice for me,” Kerstetter wrote in an email to BarBend. “After watching the amount of time and effort the coaches put into the athletes individually, I knew this was a group of really great people who I could see myself training alongside for years to come as I work towards my goals.”
Nievas was a member of the CrossFit Mayhem Independence team that placed fifth at the 2022 Games. Prior to moving to Cookeville, TN, to train full-time with the team, the native of Argentina made her first Games appearance in 2021 as an Individual competitor, where she placed 31st.
“I’m really excited,” Nievas wrote in a text to BarBend. “That’s all I’ve always looked for, to be a part of a team. I plan to work harder than ever to compete in the individual Copa Sur Semifinal and win my place at the Games again.”
The Full PRVN Roster
The addition of these three athletes — as well as Andrea Nisler, Taylor Williamson, Tim Paulson, and Tola Morakinyo on Team PRVN — solidifies perhaps the strongest roster that Orr has fielded since starting the camp as a husband-wife duo with six-time Fittest Woman on Earth® Tia-Clair Toomey in 2020. They add to a roster that includes:
- Tia-Clair Toomey
- Brooke Wells
- Sydney Wells
- Nicole Burke
- Saxon Panchik
- Nick Mathew
- Will Moorad
- Luis Oscar Mora Martin
Helgadottir gives PRVN five women in the current top 100 and three in the top 20 of the CrossFit Games World Rankings. This includes Toomey, who is ranked first overall but will not compete in 2023 after announcing that she is pregnant.
More CrossFit Content
Keep up with CrossFit by checking out these stories from BarBend:
- How to Watch the 2023 CrossFit Open
- Check Out Fittest Man on Earth® Justin Medeiros’ Latest Gym Tour: “The Shred Shed”
- Comeback Season — 20 Women Athletes Eyeing Returns or Debuts for the 2023 CrossFit Games
Featured Image: PRVN Fitness