Good morning and welcome to the weekend edition of the Morning Chalk Up. The postponed Sanctionals are stacking up in June and July, and we are looking at a serious volunteer and judge shortage. And, if you bought a ticket for the WOD on the Waves cruise, you are probably pretty anxious right now; with an April 16 bon voyage date, it seems unlikely to happen, but the organizers have yet to ease concerns about refunds. Today:
Two and three Sanctionals per weekend will stretch the CrossFit workforce thin.
WOD on the Waves worries ticket-holders.
How to make your online and at-home programming accessible for adaptive athletes.
“Far better is it to dare mighty things, to win glorious triumphs, even though checked by failure…than to rank with those poor spirits who neither enjoy much nor suffer much, because they live in a gray twilight that knows not victory nor defeat.”– Teddy Roosevelt
Survival Of The Fittest: The Sanctionals Workforce Dilemma
The Rogue Invitational’s announcement that it will be postponing the event roughly a month, to June 13-14, was just the latest in a wave of Sanctionals pushing their plans into June and July. The weekend that the Rogue Invitational has moved to is also occupied by fellow midwest event the Granite Games, making it the third weekend to now feature multiple Sanctionals as a result of the COVID-19 pandemic.
One of the big issues that no one is talking about publicly yetis the workforce dilemma created now by stacking so many events in such a short time period. Rescheduling events in such a short time period with new dates that conflict with other events originally months apart puts judges, other volunteers, and athletes at a crossroads. The schedule right now from the middle of June going forward looks like this:
June 12-14: The Granite Games, Rogue Invitational (two days only).
June 20-21: Asbury Park Summer Games.
June 26-28: The CrossFit French Throwdown, Reykjavik CrossFit Championship, Mid-Atlantic CrossFit Challenge.
July 3-5: Mayan CrossFit Classic, Asia CrossFit Championships, Down Under CrossFit Championship
July 18-19: CrossFit German Throwdown
That’s 10 total events within 38 days, and perhaps more importantly, they’re less than six weeks out from the CrossFit Games. That’s still not factoring in the West Coast Classic, CrossFit Atlas Games, and Italian Showdown, which still have yet to declare a new date for their postponed events. It’s likely that come April there will be at least a dozen events slotted into that same timeframe.
The problem: There are only so many resources to go around as far as manpower is concerned, these events run on the backs of hundreds of volunteers and athletes willing to make a commitment to that event for everything to fall into place. Events stacked on top of each other force judges and other personnel to make a difficult decision.
WOD on the Waves Determined to Set Sail Despite Global Pandemic, Costing Customers Thousands
Despite a global pandemic, country and state-wide mandatory quarantines and business closures, the WOD on the Waves cruise, which is due to set sail in less than a month, has neither canceled nor offered full refunds to customers. The cruise operated by Celebrity Cruises appears to be an outlier in the cruise industry as major cruise lines have suspended travel. Fans forked out between $699 – $3,999 for the five-day trip, not including airfare.
What’s happening: Major cruise lines across the world are essentially docked right now with several pushing back the next sailing well into mid-spring. WOD on the Waves is set to sail in just 26 days on April 16.
All ocean-going departures from American ports are suspended until at least April 11.
Viking cruise line suspended all river and ocean cruises until at least April 30.
Princess cruises halted all 18 ships until at least May 10.
Virgin Voyages postponed the launch of their first cruise ship until this summer.
Multiple cruise ships are still sailing around in search for ports to dock.
Despite all of that, WOD on the Waves alerted passengers on March 16 that the company intends for the cruise to continue, a decision that has both passengers and celebrity guests concerned. The Morning Chalk Up has reached out to cruise organizers but has yet to receive any kind of response or acknowledgment.
“As of now, Celebrity has confirmed that they still plan to host our cruise next month, and we are making final plans to move forward with our sailing.”
“WOD on the Waves is working closely with Celebrity Cruises to enhance the sanitizing procedures that will be followed throughout the cruise in all staterooms and public areas of the ship, as well as with the fitness equipment and scheduled workout classes.”
Customers will be offered a full refund only if the voluntary suspension is extended: “We will notify all booked guests and anticipate refunding our guests their monies paid,” the company’s notice said.
One big thing: More than 40 celebrity attendees are still contractually obligated to show up according to multiple conversations with athletes who are on contract to attend. The athletes we spoke to understand, they’d have to be quarantined for 14 days upon return based on current CDC guidelines.
How to Make your “At-Home” and Online Presence Accessible for Adaptive Athletes
We are living through an extraordinary moment and gyms and fitness brands are offering all sorts of online and app-based services for those stuck at home in lockdown, under quarantine or social distancing. It’s vitally important to understand how those products will be received by all users — including those with disabilities. This article explores the concept of “Universal Design” with three-time CrossFit Games team athlete and special education expert Kristen Arnold to give you actionable tips to be able to reach more potential clients, more effectively.
What is Universal Design
Universal Design (UD) is the configuration and composition of an “environment” so that it can be accessed, understood, and used to the greatest extent possible by all people, regardless of their age, ability, or other characteristics. An “environment” for the digital fitness community could be downloadable booklets, online programming, or live video-conference workouts using a service like Zoom.
Arnold: “The principles of Universal Design apply to building structures (including gyms), as well as physical and digital learning environments. When a gym owner or trainer applies principles of Universal Design in both physical and digital environments, structural and social barriers are removed so that anyone, regardless of ability, can participate. “
Inclusion is at the heart of Universal Design. For gyms, trainers, and online programming providers, this means making your service or product available to more people. This in turn means more potential clients (i.e. increased revenue) but it also means providing an essential health service to those who need it most in times of isolation — people with disabilities.
When thinking about how to make your services or products more accessible, it can be easy to plan for physical aspects like ramps or accessible doorways, but digital products can be less straightforward.
Ways to Make Your Online Presence More Accessible
With the most popular digital mediums in mind, here are some tips you can use to quickly and easily make your digital presence and products more in-line with Universal Design principles:
EBooks, Websites, and Apps: Use high contrast colors and shapes for visual information.
In this episode, Kristi Eramo O’Connell hits her last in-gym WOD for a while, an experience many of us have had recently. Eramo O’Connell is building out her garage gym and preparing to help us get our fitness in at home.
In these uncertain times, there is no telling when we will be able to work with clients in person again. The WAG Coach Certification gives you the confidence and tools to make an impact on people remotely. To support people that need to find remote work quickly, WAG is doing a special launch of their certification for $300 off next week.
The Age Group Online Qualifier is done! Talking Elite Fitness hosts Sean Woodland and Tommy Marquez go through each division and recap the unofficial scores and results. Find out which Masters athletes are keeping impressive streaks alive and which age groups put up some unbelievable numbers. And, more events have been postponed due to the Coronavirus pandemic.
While there is no diet or ingredient that can protect you from viruses, there are some things you can do to help facilitate your immune system. These include: eating tons of vegetables, healthy fats, superfoods, and hot and spicy foods; and watching your intake of caffeine, alcohol, processed foods, and sugar.