Strength in Depth Raises Ring Height at Athletes’ Request
The Strength in Depth Semifinal organizers announced that the ring height would be raised to accommodate taller athletes competing in London. The change was made after athletes requested the ring height be raised during an athlete briefing.
- “Athletes raised concerns so we made sure it worked,” said Ollie Mansbridge.
One big thing: Strength in Depth is using rig and ring height guidelines outlined by the Professional Fitness Athletes Association (PFAA). The recommendations were sent out in an email to all organizers on May 10.
- The rings were raised from 2.4 meters (94.5 in) to 2.5 (98.5).
The big picture: Equipment, athlete concerns, and CrossFit and event organizers’ responses have come under intense scrutiny during Semifinals.
- During week 1, Scott Panchik raised safety concerns over the length of extra rope on the ground at the Syndicate Crown. Organizers said nothing could be done and Panchik said he hurt his knee landing on the rope slack on the descent which forced him to withdraw. He underwent surgery recently.
- During week 3, Granite Games bar heights were too short to accommodate taller athletes, 6-foot and taller, to perform some bar movements without their feet touching the ground.
- Atlas Games decided not to raise bar heights after multiple athletes, including Patrick Vellner, requested it during the athlete briefing. There are at least ten athletes 6-foot and taller. Organizers said: “The Rogue rig at Atlas Games has a height of 92 inches. This is the same height that has been used at every other Semifinal in North America. In consulting with all parties, the decision has been made to maintain this standard height.”
Brent Fikowski, one of the leaders of the PFAA, commented on the decision not to raise bar heights at the Atlas Games on an Instagram post, writing: “Very frustrating that myself and the PFAA reached out to every semifinal on May 10 providing them with customized info on their tallest/shortest athletes and what height bars/rings they required. The data showed that a high setup for the tallest athletes and the option of a 6 or 12” riser for shorter athletes would be fair. Then at Atlas they got to visually see those same athletes be unable to hang from the bar. And still they stuck with 92”.