“If we always choose comfort, we never learn the deepest capabilities of our mind or body.”- Wim Hof
How to Watch: The 2023 North America East Semifinal and Schedule of Events
The 2023 CrossFit Games Semifinals stage is upon us and in North America that means the East, the first of two Semifinal events on the continent. The four-day competition will be held at the Orange County Convention Center in Orlando, FL and the top 11 women, 12 men and 10 team finishers will advance to the CrossFit Games later this summer.
Here’s a complete roster of the 60 men, 60 women and 40 teams who are competing.
How to Watch: The 2023 Africa Semifinal and Schedule of Events
The 2023 CrossFit Games Semifinals stage starts now and in Africa, that means the REBEL Renegade Games taking place May 19-21. The three-day competition will be held at the University of Witwatersrand, Johannesburg in Johannesburg, South Africa and the top woman, man and team will advance to the CrossFit Games later this summer.
Here’s a complete roster of the 30 men, 28 women and 19 teams who are competing.
Dancer Iselin Brogeland on Competing at Semifinals and the “Performance” of CrossFit
CrossFit is well known for it’s supposed “savagery”–blood, sweat, and the occasional visit from “Pukie the Clown,” loud music and big weights, big muscles and calluses all shown proudly for the world to see. CrossFitters pride themselves on this intensity.
On the opposite end of this spectrum? Dance. With the typical stereotypes of delicate, small girls with graceful, beautiful clothes and beautiful classical music, there isn’t much of an expected overlap between the two sports.
2023 European Semifinals athlete Iselin Brogeland may have just found one, though.
2023 CrossFit Games Season Prize Purse Increases from 2022, Offers Biggest Payout in History to this Year's Champion
On May 16, CrossFit LLC announced this season’s Semifinals and NOBULL CrossFit Games athlete prize purse has increased from last season with Semifinals paying out $431,000, and the Games $2.945 million across all divisions.
In comparison: This is an increase of $17,000 from the 2022 Semifinals, and of $100,000 from last year’s CrossFit Games.
Worth noting: The biggest pay increases are going to the individual athletes. In fact, adaptive divisions ($160,000) and age-group payouts ($280,000) remain unchanged from last year, and there are only minor changes to team payouts.
Three Notable Changes from 2022
Top 20 Games payout increases: Last year, for the first time in history, every single individual Games athlete received a cash prize (prior to that, only the top 20 individuals did). However, this also meant the top 20 did not see a prize purse boost in 2022. This year, they do.
The top 10 individual male and females at the Games this summer will each receive a $5000 pay increase from 2022, with the champions set to earn $315,000—the largest in history—and with second to sixth place taking home $125,000, $85,000, $60,000, $45,000, $40,000 respectably.
After that, the pay increase slows a bit, with seventh to 10th place finishers seeing a $4,000, $3,000, $2,000 and $1,000 boost from last season respectively.
Meanwhile, eleventh through 40th will receive the same payout as 2022, with 11th receiving $20,000, decreasing each placement all the way to 40th ($2,250).
Semifinals Individual increases: Last year, Semifinals payouts didn’t change from the 2021 season, and, in fact, were the same as the 2018 Regionals for individuals, leading some to question whether CrossFit should be offering more.
CrossFit arguably listened to the noise, as this year’s men’s and women’s Semifinals winners in the two North American and European Semifinals will earn twice as much as they did last year ($10,000, up from $5,000).
Further, second to fifth this year will take home $7,000, $5,000, $4,000 and $3,000 respectively—up from $4,000, $3,000, $2,000 and $1,000 in 2022—and with each additional Games qualifier earning $2,000.
The athletes in the other Semifinals—Oceania, South America, Asia and Africa—however will receive the same amount as last season: $5,000 for first, $4,000 for second and $3,000 for third.
Games Team increases: This year’s team payouts don’t look much different than last, where CrossFit paid out the top 10 teams at the Games for the first time. Prior to that, only the top five teams earned cash prizes. However, there is one small change this season.
The second to fifth place teams at the Games will receive $5,000 each more than last season ($75,000, $45,000, $30,000 and $25,000 respectively), while the team champion will, once again, earn $100,000.
The big picture: When it comes to money, people are always going to criticize, and always going to want more, but it’s worth remembering where we came from to appreciate the progress CrossFit has made to help professionalize the sport in the last 16 years. With a couple exceptions—namely during the pandemic—the overall prize purse has steadily increased, and has extended to more athletes each year, and this season is no exception.
And for those OGs who remember the first CrossFit Games in 2007 on the ranch in Aromas, CA—when Dave Castro pulled out a wad of $500 cash to hand to winners James Fitzgerald and Jolie Gentry—and the growth of our sport has to be considered something to be proud of.
Dani Speegle Headlines Important Panel During Saudi Arabia Sports Expo
One of CrossFit’s biggest names is heading to the Middle East for an important conversation. Four-time NOBULL CrossFit Games competitor Dani Speegle will headline a panel focused on women’s empowerment.
The details: From May 18-20, Riyadh Front will host the Sports For All (SFA) Expo, which will feature zones dedicated to fitness, nutrition, apparel, team sports, and stress management.
The area where Speegle will appear is the Let’s Talk zone. This section of the SFA Expo has educational programs, workshops, and motivational talks that cover everything from the business side of sports and fitness to their role in Saudi Arabia.
The panel featuring Speegle and other strong women from the world of sports will take place on the final day of the SFA Expo. The panelists will try to inspire girls to follow their dreams while celebrating the societal change taking place in Saudi Arabia.
Continuing the movement: The trip to Riyadh is only the latest example of Speegle finding ways to inspire other women. She has done so countless times on the competition floor by lifting heavy weights.
Speegle has also focused on the nutrition side of the conversation with her Girls Who Eat campaign, which she uses to highlight the importance of properly fueling your body and building a positive relationship with food.
Speegle will now join forces with Sports For All, which has the purpose of driving community engagement with sports. SFA pushes every day to have 40 percent of people in Saudi Arabia active by 2030.
Speegle: “The SFA Expo is the first event of its kind in the country, and when I was invited to speak on a women’s empowerment panel alongside other strong ladies from the sports world, I was excited at the opportunity to play a small part in creating more positive change in the lives of women and society on the other side of the globe.”
“I’m honored to be helping lead this very important conversation: inspiring girls to be strong and strive to reach their goals in whatever they want to do in life.”
Putting strength on display: The panel will not be the only way in which Speegle seeks to inspire people. She will also lead a CrossFit demonstration/class earlier on May 20, which will only highlight the strength and engine that she has used to reach Madison multiple times. This demonstration will also be fitting considering that many residents of Saudi Arabia have embraced CrossFit in recent years.
Grip Strength Benchmarks for a Longer Life
We aren’t trying to be morbid, but if you want to live longer you might want to read this article by the pros at Invictus.
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