Another “World-First” At A Sanctioned Event: Why “Flags” Will Be Included In Australia
Another brand-new event will debut at the Australian CrossFit Championship (ACC) next month, following the lead of several Sanctionals that already introduced culturally significant implements and events this season.
The ACC took to Instagram to introduce the “Flags” event, but to Australians, the iconic beach sport needs no introduction.
- Event organizer Darren Coughlan told the Morning Chalk Up: “There has been some sprinting and agility components in previous CrossFit Games, and even though we are not trying to replicate the Games, I did want to throw in something that is an iconic Aussie sport but also has relevance for those trying to reach the top end.”
- “The fact that there will be physical contact between athletes is something new at this level, so I’m very keen to see who really goes for the win,” he added.
How it works: Competitors will be asked to lay down on the starting line, facing away from the “Flags” or small rubber poles in the sand, a short distance away.
There are always fewer “Flags” then there are competitors, so when the whistle blows it’s a turnaround sprint to grab one. Any competitor who misses out is eliminated. It continues in this fashion until there’s only one man standing.
- Many Australian children grow up doing a weekend sport known as “Nippers” which could be described as the CrossFit Kids of Surf Lifesaving training. Flags is one of the first events they are trained in, practicing speed and agility on the sand.
- Beach Flags were introduced at a Surf Lifesaving carnival in 1947 and have been a staple in beach competitions ever since.
In the past two years since the introduction of worldwide Sanctionals, we’ve seen a number of culturally significant nods as events seek to embrace the diversity that is being promoted from the top at Crossfit.
- Most recently, Athletes in Norway braved the countryside of the Storefjell Resort with a snow climb.
- Strength In Depth took athletes off the Concept2 rower and into an actual boat.
- The Stone Lock at Pandaland exposed athletes to traditional Chinese culture with the ancient Chinese Kung-Fu training implement.
- Dubai CrossFit Championship took athletes to Jumeirah Mina Al Salam Beach & the NAS Sports Complex, as well as introducing three new movements – the flying push-ups, deck squats, and A jumps.
- The Filthy 150 also introduced the “unbroken rope climb” now expected to show up more frequently in elite-level competition.
Taking the baton and running with it: Each Sanctional is independent and therefore is able to inject creativity and excitement into their event, however they see fit.
- Dave Castro, while openly saying he doesn’t closely follow the programing at sanctioned events, was open about his aversion to the inclusion of shooting at the Rogue Invitational.
Castro told the ShootingUSA Podcast: “I do not believe that shooting should be involved in any of our CrossFit competitions that have weight to them or that have qualification to get someone to the Games.”
- “Shooting has nothing to do with the test of fitness. Fundamentally, we’re testing fitness … and in those qualifying events, we’re testing fitness again to get the fittest to the next stage,” he said.
- Our very own Tommy Marquez discussed the innovative events and “…a way of mitigating it overall effects” on competition on his Talking Elite Fitness Podcast.
While ACC HAS yet to release how the “Flags” event will be scored, Tommy and Sean WOODLAND used the STRENGTH IN DEPTH rowing example; IT scored the event with 50 points instead of 100, to weight the new-innovative movement against more traditional CrossFit programming.