“Magic” of the Games Inspiration for CrossFit First-Timers, According to Roza

November 3, 2020 by
Photo courtesy of CrossFit LLC.
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In a video released last week, CrossFit CEO Eric Roza shared his take on the 2020 CrossFit Games, calling them an “inspiration” for not just the community, but those who “haven’t discovered CrossFit yet.” 

What he said: “I’m so grateful that people who haven’t discovered CrossFit yet but might think the rest of their life isn’t going to be very long or might not be worth living at a level that they thought they might see possible are going to find inspiration from [the Games] or find inspiration from someone who’s driven to coach or open an affiliate due to [the Games] and that they’re not giving up and so this hope we’re providing all the way down the chain is really exciting.”

One big thing: Roza’s comments stand in stark contrast to the stance previously taken by then owner and founder, Greg Glassman, downplaying the CrossFit Games’ role as a marketing tool to bring in new customers to CrossFit. 

  • Over the past two years, as emphasis shifted away from the sport, countless fans, affiliate owners and everyday CrossFitters pointed out that their journey to CrossFit began after seeing athletes competing at the Games on TV or on social media. 

Why it matters: Early on, Roza signaled his intention to grow the sport of CrossFit on all fronts, sharing during his inaugural town hall a desire to see “a billion viewers of CrossFit around the world in 10 years.” His comments, both privately to athletes and stakeholders, as well as publicly signal a renewed interest in investing in the sport of Fitness similar to the growth seen from 2016 to 2018, when Games viewership and interest was at its height. 

  • Mat Fraser said in an August interview that he didn’t think think [CrossFit] could have landed in much better hands”
  • Roza has had multiple conversations with not only the 2020 Games athletes but other athletes. The newly formed Professional Fitness Athletes’ Association was invited out to the Future of CrossFit Summit in July and reported positive feedback

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