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2021 CrossFit Games Qualifying: Different but the Same?

Morning Chalk Up

February 15   |   POWERED BY


Good morning and welcome to the Morning Chalk Up. In today’s edition:

  • How do the 2021 Semifinals stack up to previous Games qualification formats?
  • Eric Roza addressed affiliate growth amid COVID-19 at last week’s quarterly town hall.
  • Best practices for pandemic coaching cues with Athena Perez and Kevin Don.
  • Our limited release “More Chalk Less Talk” t-shirt is now available for pre-order. Shop now.

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“Only those who will risk going too far can possibly find out how far one can go.” - T. S. Eliot

  How the 2021 Semifinal CrossFit Games Qualification Format Compares to Past Seasons  

How the 2021 Semifinal CrossFit Games Qualification Format Compares to Past Seasons

The new 2021 CrossFit Games season features a brand new, though strangely familiar, Semifinal stage.

This is the critical stage for the most elite athletes in the sport because 95% of the Games field this season will qualify directly from a Semifinal; while the remaining 5% of Games athletes also must do well at their Semifinal just to have an opportunity in the Last Chance Qualifier.

Here’s how the 40 individual spots at the Games will be awarded this year: 

  • 20 men and 20 women from North America (50% of the field)
  • 10 men and 10 women from Europe (25% of the field)
  • 2 men and 2 women from Oceania (7.5% of the field)
  • 2 men and 2 women from Asia (5% of the field)
  • 2 men and 2 women from South America (5% of the field)
  • 1 man and 1 woman from Africa (2.5% of the field)
  • 2 men and 2 women from the Last Chance Qualifier (5% of the field)

In a study of the previous three seasons we had to be somewhat clever (because each of those seasons is unique in its structure) to try and figure out if these numbers accurately represent the dispersion of elite level athletes in the sport.

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  • The CrossFit Open begins in 24 days.
  • Dani Speegle x Barebells Functional Foods: Last week Dani Speegle announced that she has partnered with Barebells, best know for their low-carb protein bars. She joins other elite US CrossFit athletes representing the brand, like Haley Adams, Brooke Haas, and teen stand-out Mal O’Brien. And, to top it off, Speegle announced a new Barebells flavor, Chocolate Dough.
  • Mat Fraser and Sammy Moniz released the introductory video for their new YouTube channel, FRA5ER yesterday. The content will feature fitness, food, family and fun.
    • Fraser: “Right off the bat it’s going to be a lot of training videos,…why I’m doing the training I’m doing, what I’ve done in the past to prepare for the Games, the intent of every workout and little tips and tricks.”
  • Workout Challenge Giveaway: Two-time CrossFit Games athlete, Brandon Luckett, is giving away a free pair of Ten Thousand shorts to the first two men who can complete the round of 24 power cleans in this Jump Ship Training workout. Contestants must submit a video and use Open standards. The deadline is 8 PM ET tonight. And, if you make it past the round of 24, keep going, you could win a trip to Hawaii from Jump Ship Training.
  • Counterfeit Alert: Concept2 has received reports of counterfeit C2 Rowers and other machines are being sold by resellers on popular retail sites and marketplaces. They have created a list of things to watch out for when buying a Concept2 machine on the resale market.
  At Quarterly Town Hall, Roza Addresses Opportunity and Growth Amid COVID-19  

At Quarterly Town Hall, Roza Addresses Opportunity and Growth Amid COVID-19

CrossFit CEO Eric Roza held his quarterly town hall on Friday and delivered several updates about the season, the DEI Council members, and the impact of COVID-19 on the community members around the world.

He addressed where the top markets currently sit amid the pandemic and how CrossFit will approach growth in a post-COVID world while continuing to keep members safe.

The Nitty Gritty: Roza produced a chart featuring the top 10 markets for CrossFit and how COVID-19 is currently impacting them. The United States sat atop the list with the most affiliates, followed by Brazil. The Netherlands — which included Belgium and Luxembourg — sat at the bottom of the list. Of the markets featured, five were completely shut down while the other five had varying levels of restrictions. The majority also featured green arrows signifying that COVID-19 numbers are going down.

  • “The most hope-filling part of this slide is that in eight out of 10 markets, that we are seeing COVID trending, getting better relative to coming back from the holidays,” Roza said. The two notable exceptions were Italy and France. Both countries are completely shut down but have rising COVID-19 cases.
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  Best Practices for Pandemic Coaching Cues with Athena Perez and Kevin Don  


Best Practices for Pandemic Coaching Cues with Athena Perez and Kevin Don

When Athena Perez opened Scaled Nation CrossFit, a purely remote affiliate, she knew there would be challenges, but she wasn’t expecting to discover how different remote coaching is than working with clients in person, and not just because she’d miss the high fives.

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  Best Practices for Pandemic Coaching Cues with Athena Perez and Kevin Don  

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Your Knee Position in Olympic Lifts

We want to start the snatch and clean with the knees out -- usually as wide as the arms will allow. There are several reasons for this: it allows the bar to pass your knees more easily, it opens your hips which allows for a better back arch and it allows for a more upright posture without lowering your hips. Learn more about a proper pull position in this Catalyst Athletics video from coach Greg Everett.




Download Zen Planner’s Free Guide to Improving the Success of Your Gym

Knowing your gym’s important metrics will help you make the right decisions to grow your business. If you haven’t been keeping track of the health of your gym, Zen Planner can help! Their free guide will show you how to measure your marketing efforts, the best ways to increase revenue, and how to improve retention.



When Tia-Clair Toomey Will Return to the US

Many people have been wondering when the four-time Fittest Woman on Earth, Tia-Clair Toomey would return from Korea and her bobsled training to prepare for the 2021 CrossFit. In this episode of her vlog, she answers that question and many others, including what she's missed about her new home, Nashville, TN.



Get a Deal On the Nano X

Through February 21, Reebok is offering an additional 10% off the already absurd 40% off site-wide sale that includes select versions of the Nano X. To snag the extra 10% off, use the code "EXCLUSIVE" at checkout. (US Subscribers Only)



Paleo Chocolate Lava Cake

This decadent molten chocolate lava cake is the perfect way to celebrate a special occasion with your favorite gluten-free loved one. Here are some tips: Check on the cakes a minute or so before you think they’re done. And, serve them right away. They’ll keep cooking if you keep the cakes in the hot ramekins, and your lava won’t ooze properly.


Chalk Up Highlights is our section dedicated to celebrating our community’s wins in the gym. Follow @ChalkUpHighlights and submit your highlight to [email protected] to be featured.

3/25: No Weak Links (Marcy, NY)
3/25 - 3/26: Beach Brawl – Spring (Pensacola Beach, FL)
3/25 - 3/26: Costa Dorada Fitness Challenge (Tamarit, Tarragona, Spain)
3/30 - 4/8: Nine27 Athletics Spring Showdown (Online, Virtual)
4/1: 2023 Cougars & Cradle Robbers Throwdown (Salem, MA)
4/2: CFC Clash (Tallahassee, FL)
4/15: Girls Gone Rx Canada: Newmarket Central (Newmarket, Ontario)
4/15: Best Babes Riverbend (Godfrey, IL)
4/15: The Main Thing (Teams of 4: FFMM) (Cullman, AL)
4/15: WOD Wars Fitness Festival (Dunedin, FL)
4/15: Best Babes Canada: Greater Montreal (Vaudreuil-Dorion, QC)
4/15: Best Babes Gilbert (Gilbert, AZ)
4/15: Best Babes Partner Comp: Woodland (Woodland, CA)
4/15: Best Babes Wyoming (Cheyenne, WY)
4/15: Girls Gone Rx Ohio (Lancaster, OH)
4/21 - 4/23: Bayside Classic (Daphne, AL)
4/22: Festivus Games – Individuals and 3-Person Same Sex Teams (Savannah, GA)
4/22 - 4/23: Benidorm Fitness Challenge (Benidorm, Alicante, Spain)
4/29: Battle of the Elements (Ocala, FL)
4/29: CHLKDUP Classic (Nashville, TN)
4/29 - 4/30: Battle at the Lab (Clarksville, TN)
5/6: Code 3 Clash (Eagle, ID)
5/6: Rep Your Box (Seattle, WA)

See all upcoming events

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