“Champions keep playing until they get it right.”- Billie Jean King
CrossFit Announces 2024 Semifinals Locations
Today, CrossFit announced some news we’ve all been anticipating: where and when exactly the 2024 CrossFit Games Semifinals will occur. The same seven regions will host the Semifinals, but unlike last year, CrossFit is partnering with event organizers for all regions, not just Asia, South America, Africa, and Oceania.
Remind me: Last month, CrossFit announced details regarding the 2024 Games season, including changes to the number of athletes qualifying for each competition stage. Read more on this now.
At the time, CrossFit shared the top 40 individual men and women and top 30 teams from each region will be competing in person as a Semifinals event for a spot at the games.
A major change from the previous year when the top 60 individual men and women from North America East, North America West, and Europe qualified for Semifinals competition.
Age-group and adaptive athlete semifinal events will be held May 8-13. Below are the dates and locations for Semifinals for each region.
Some details: Similar to last year, CrossFit will program the Semifinals and the tests will be consistent across all seven regions (Europe, Asia, Oceania, North America West, North America East, South America, and Africa.)
CrossFit uses a strength-of-field calculation to finalize the total number of qualifying positions for the Games. Each region has a minimum number of qualifying spots (see below)
2024 Semifinal Schedule
Week 1 (May 17-19, 2024)
Europe Semifinal by French Throwdown
Location: LDLC Arena, Décines-Charpieu, France
CrossFit Games Qualifying Spots: Five Individual (minimum), Eight Team
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TYR Wodapalooza 2024 Programming Preview with Competition Director Joaquin Pérez Borrego
What better way to ring in the new year than a friendly competition under the Miami sun? The self-proclaimed fitness festival, TYR Wodapalooza, is entering its 12th year, and it’s known to bring in everyone from elite athletes to hundreds of community members vying for a spot on the podium in one of the many Rx and scaled divisions.
The four-day competition takes a lot of coordination and planning up until and throughout the entire event. Director of Competition Joaquin Pérez Borrego takes us through what the team behind TYR Wodapalooza has been working on and what we can expect to see come January.
Remind me: The event goes from Thursday, January 11, through Sunday, January 14, at Bayfront Park in Miami, FL. Athletes looking to compete had to do an online qualifier, which included five workouts and varied depending on which division they chose to do.
The divisions include individual, team (composed of three men or three women), teens, masters, and adaptive. Invitations to select elites were also sent out.
Bayfront Park is an all-outdoor facility, making it a bit tricky when it comes to programming and trying to keep things new every year. Uncontrollable factors like weather also have to be taken into account.
“In the past, we have had partners that helped us on this side of the programming. This past year, we did it with several training camps like HWPO and PRVN, which was great. But this year, we did it ourselves,” Borrego says.
Athletes and members of the TYR Wodapalooza event team met in Mexico to test workouts and strategize the programming for the 2024 event.
The programming starts with the individuals and then shifts to teams: “We start with the elites, and then from there, we start scaling down the other divisions.”
Borrego says he gets inspiration from team members and from other competitions, but TYR Wodapalooza consists of some specific challenges. “[It’s] a completely unique different environment, such as outdoors, the water, you have heat sometimes, you have rain, cold, so you need to be prepared for all those scenarios,” Borrego explains.
Veronica Romero, the owner of CrossFit Warehouse in Alsip, IL, is used to training all sorts of athletes. Owning the affiliate since 2018, Romero ran teen and traditional CrossFit classes until recently, when something pushed her to expand her offerings.
“My mom, Minerva (aka Minnie), was diagnosed in August 2018 with Parkinson’s disease,” Romero says. “Her doctor told us that there is no cure for it, and the only thing they can recommend is exercise. The more, the better, but there was at least a minimum requirement of exercise to make a difference in slowing the progression.”
Parkinson’s occurs when brain cells that make dopamine, a chemical that coordinates movement, stop working or die. The neurodegenerative disorder can cause tremors, stiffness, and balance problems. There can also be non-movement symptoms that are part of Parkinson’s, and everyone living with the disease has a unique experience and a different course. It is a lifelong, progressive disease.
It is estimated that Parkinson’s affects nearly 1 million people in the United States and more than 6 million people worldwide. Parkinson’s is described in levels: Level 1 patients have the least symptoms, and it goes up to Level 5.
The diagnosis was difficult to hear for Romero and her mother.
“She took it hard when she got the diagnosis,” Romero remembers. “I don’t think she was clinically diagnosed as depressed, but she was definitely depressed. She was extremely emotional.”
When she heard that exercise could make an impact, the reaction changed, according to Romero.
“I think she was hopeful to hear those words. I know that there’s an inevitable with this disease, but it’s in her hands to a certain extent how it progresses. Before that news, she kind of just surrendered to Parkinson’s, like she put up the white flag and was like, ‘This is it. It’s over, I’m done.’ And it was really sad to watch.”
Romero began helping her mother focus on fitness.
“I had to be proactive. Exercise wasn’t part of her everyday life like it is for myself, my son, and all of us who are part of the gym community,” Romero says. “I know what it does for people. I see firsthand every day what it does for people’s mood, confidence, and overall health. So I’m like, ‘Okay, Mom, you got this diagnosis, but we can do something about it for now.’”
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