Battle for Ukraine Fundraiser Proceeds Will Go To Frontline Ukrainian CrossFit Athletes
On February 24, 2022, as thousands of CrossFit athletes woke up anticipating the 22.1 CrossFit Open workout announcement, Ukrainians rose to the sound of explosions as Russian invaded their country.
All of a sudden, instead of preparing for wall walks, dumbbell snatches and box jumps, Ukrainian CrossFitters set off to the frontlines to defend their country.
Maxim Kvapysh, a young CrossFit athlete in his 20s, was one of them. He was tragically killed on May 31.
His death is part of what led Ivan Maksakov, the owner of Kvapysh’s gym—PROWOD in Kyiv, Ukraine—to take action to help soldiers who do CrossFit.
“I realized that I cannot force the Russian invaders not to shoot and go home…but I can make a contribution so that those who defend our country are better equipped and have a better chance of returning home alive,” Maksakov explained.
This became the impetus behind Maksakov’s fundraiser Battle for Ukraine—an online competition, open to anyone, that starts today—the goal being to raise as much money as possible for equipment for Ukrainians who, “just yesterday held a barbell in their hands and today are holding arms, protecting our country and freedom,” he explained.
Competition details: Battle for Ukraine runs for three weeks and includes four workouts.
- Currently, CrossFit athletes from 18 different countries have registered for the various divisions: Rx, scaled, masters 35+ and military. Further, there’s an at-home option for those without access to equipment.
- Registration is open and costs $10. Donations can also be made on Competition Corner.
The big picture: Maksakov is urging the global CrossFit community to sign up and support Ukrainians through the tragedy that is happening right in front of them.
“This is a hurricane that is literally erasing cities…There is nothing worse than people buried alive in their homes or children killed by a shell in playgrounds,” he said.
And while an online competition is but a small way to show support, Maksakov is hoping it will unite people the way the CrossFit Open usually does. In this sense, he’s hoping to give Ukrainians the Open they missed in 2022.
“I want Battle for Ukraine to unite people so that anyone from our community knows that if they need help it will definitely come,” he said.