How Italy’s CrossFit Scene Survived the Pandemic And is Now Bouncing Back Stronger

July 14, 2022 by
Photo Credit: Courtesy of Matteo Pozzati

CrossFit affiliates in Italy had to weather the Covid-19 storm for longer and with more severe restrictions than most other countries, with no support from their government. But the community has bounced back and is now seeing a growth rate of five to 10 CrossFit affiliates per month, which is expected to continue.

“During Covid, it was not perceived in the US as it was here. Here it was a freaking disaster, we were not supported by the government, people were scared,” said Matteo Pozzati, CrossFit Country Manager for Italy since 2017.

Italy was one of the first countries to experience a Covid-19 “lockdown”. As early as March 2020, the country went into a national lockdown until May. Following a second wave in September and October, some “red zones” were placed back under restrictions for November to January 2021.

“We struggled to keep affiliates open,” Pozzati said.

To make matters worse, gyms were “scapegoated”, said Pozzati. They were blamed for the spread of the virus. Pozzati tried to fight the PR fire by pointing out that CrossFit already had group size restrictions as it was all done in classes and that equipment was not shared.

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