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Morning Chalk Up

December 9   |   POWERED BY


Good morning and welcome to the Morning Chalk Up.

In today’s edition:

  • No swimming in Dubai?
  • Analyzing affiliates move from garage gyms to retail locations.
  • Fiit partners with AssaultBike to bring you more AssaultBike  pain programming.
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“Your passion is waiting for your courage to catch up.” - Isabelle Lafleche

  No Swimming in Dubai? What the CrossFit Games Can Learn From This  

No Swimming in Dubai? What the CrossFit Games Can Learn From This

Based on recent event information sent to athletes, which include recommendations about necessary apparel and a tentative schedule for the three days of competition (December 16-18), all indications are that for the first time since at least 2016, there will not be a swimming event at the Dubai CrossFit Championship this year.

Why it matters: Similarly to Dubai’s competition, the CrossFit Games has featured a swimming workout every year going back to 2011, most of which have occurred in open water. And for a competition which dubs itself as unknown and unknowable, that has become a very predictable test at the Games.

  • It is true that different iterations of swimming have existed at the Games in terms of distance, venue, order of events, and movement pairing, but it’s a fairly foregone conclusion at this point.
  • In contrast, Dubai is making a statement: be ready for anything. And in this case that means, also being ready NOT to do the thing you assumed you would be doing and perhaps the points that come with performing well.
  • It seems that the CrossFit Games should be striving for that element of unpredictability as well.

Remind Me: Since 2018, Dubai has featured not just swimming, but open water swimming; sometimes even more than one scored event in the ocean.

  • Open water swimming was included in all events since 2018.
  • Pool events were featured in 2016 and 2017.
  • *Some information from before then is unavailable, but it seems possible based on conversations with those familiar with previous events that they’ve had swimming at a majority of events going back to 2012.

And yet this year rather than swim, the athlete’s off-site location will be at SkiDubai, an indoor ski slope in the Mall of the Emirates; the first of its kind in the Middle East.

The big picture: Swimming is an excellent test of fitness, but is it necessary to include in every version of the Games? There might not be a perfect answer to that question, but kudos to Dubai either way for not allowing themselves to be painted into a corner, and instead, taking the initiative to push forward in new and unique ways. Sometimes the most clever decisions are the ones about what to leave out, not what to include.

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8 days until the Dubai CrossFit Championship…

Kara Saunders is now a CrossFit Mayhem athlete.

MUST WATCH: Who is the top male athlete to never podium at the CrossFit Games, featuring Chase Ingraham, Tommy Marquez, Lauren Kalil and Patrick Clark.

🤔 We wonder which Australian CrossFit Games athlete who’s name rhymes with Sara Kaunders will be making a cameo in this new Disney+ show starting Chris Hemsworth AKA Thor???

MUST READ…WebMD’s profile of CrossFit’s recent foray into the health care system with the launch of CrossFit Precision Care:

  • Foucher is among the developers of CrossFit Precision Care, probably the most prominent, direct step to marry health care and fitness – yet another tie to the growing direct primary care trend.
  • “CrossFit Precision Care members are assigned a doctor and health coach, who are CrossFitters themselves. Visits are through telemedicine, with a visit to a local lab for a blood panel and a home kit to provide DNA.”
  • “The sterile doctors’ office visit is not really the place to create health,” says Julie Foucher. “Our health care system is great at addressing acute issues. It’s not really set up to be able to treat the root causes of disease, which are generally lifestyle-based.”
  • “Health is an expression of fitness over your lifetime,” says Foucher.
  • Too many people want “a pill or a procedure” to cure them, rather than changing habits to prevent and treat chronic illness, says, Lisa Dougherty founder of MedFit Network.
  • The CrossFit folks agree with that. Ideal clients will be existing clients and their family and friends who are looking for health care alternatives. CrossFitters like the focus on functional fitness, with exercises that mimic “real-life” situations, the variety, and the individualized intensity of the workouts, which change every day.

Reminder: CrossFit announced the dates of their upcoming Health Conference for January 21-22, and registration is now open.

  From the Grungy Garage Gym to the Glass Front Retail Space: The Evolution of the CrossFit Affiliate  


From the Grungy Garage Gym to the Glass Front Retail Space: The Evolution of the CrossFit Affiliate

Function over everything has been at the heart of CrossFit since its inception. This extended to early CrossFit gyms, which were often found in home garages, and went so far as to almost pride themselves as being a little grungy.

In those early affiliates, new and shiny equipment, let alone professional cleaners, were not required. In fact, a thin layer of grime was to be expected. As long as you had a rusty barbell and bumper plates, a sturdy pull-up bar and a homemade box and medicine ball, you were off to the races.

Of course, as CrossFit communities grew, gym owners eventually needed to find bigger spaces, and the answer was usually found in an industrial, warehouse-type of space in a less desirable area outside of the city center.

Fast forward to today, and while most CrossFit affiliates still tend to be housed in warehouses in industrial areas, more and more gym owners are turning to fancier, more expensive retail spaces to become their gym’s home. And they say the trade-off is worth it.

NCFIT Embraces Retail Locations

NCFIT, founded by 2008 CrossFit Games champion Jason Khalipa, includes four gyms in the Bay Area of California that are owned and operated by NCFIT, another 10 NCFIT partner gyms around the world, as well as 14 corporate wellness sites.

Three of their four Bay Area gyms, each of which are approximately 6,000 square feet, as well as a handful of NCFIT’s partner gyms, are in retail locations, a decision Khalipa made strategically, most notably to keep up with how the industry has evolved in recent years.

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  Fiit Partners With Assault Fitness for New Program Focused on the AssaultBike  

Fiit Partners With Assault Fitness for New Program Focused on the AssaultBike

Owners of at-home AssaultBikes now have another way to test their skills and improve their physical fitness. The company has partnered with Fiit, a UK-based provider of interactive workouts, for a new digital program focusing on the AssaultBike.

One big thing: Fiit started in 2017 as a platform for bodyweight workouts. The company has since added dumbbell and kettlebell workouts. The latest addition is the partnership with Assault Fitness, which will launch on the Fiit app on January 3, 2022, for an early access group.

  • There are three class concepts being added to the Fitt app, programmed by five in-house trainers and a network of many others. This list includes Gede Foster, Luke Baden, and Gustavo Vaz Tostes, the head trainer at WIT.
  • The class concepts last 25 minutes to 45 minutes and fall into three categories – Sprint, Metcon, and Endure. Vas Tostes’, in particular, focuses on classes to build strength, power, and speed.
  • Existing Fiit subscribers will not have to pay any extra money to get the AssaultBike workouts. They will have immediate access that also includes more than 1,000 other on-demand workouts from Fiit.

The new program focuses primarily on the AssaultBike Pro and AssaultBike Elite models. These two models each have Bluetooth connectivity, which provides Fiit with the ability to pull data from the workouts.

  • Users of alternative Air Bikes will have access to the workouts on the app. They just won’t be able to compare their stats on the leaderboard.

Dan Shellard, CEO and Founder of Fiit: “We’ve been building this the software, the software and the platform, the backend infrastructure, to be able to handle things like real-time leaderboards, to be able to detect movements so that we can track the reps… all those in the studio setup. We had ready-made trainers that come from the functional fitness world.”

  • “We kind of had the foundations there, so it was just a natural evolution. We didn’t have to build anything from scratch. All we needed to do was pull in the data from the AssaultBike.”

The app will include a points-based system that will tie into a leaderboard displaying stats on the screen. The app is available on iOS, Android, Samsung 2018-2021 TVs, Amazon Fire, Comcast Xfinity X1, Xfinity Flex, and Sky Q.

  • The leaderboard showcases users from around the globe, giving them opportunities to compare stats. The app also stores performance data so the members can track their progress over time.

“When we looked at our data and our user base and the types of workouts that will keep driving long-term retention of our consumers, it was a functional fitness-style workout and a typical CrossFit-style workout using dumbbells and kettlebells,” Shellard said. “And so it made sense for us to go down that path. Obviously, there’s some great solutions out there in the market in the other spinning world and the rowing world, but what I felt was really missing was something for that audience.”

The Fiit team has a studio at their office, which they use to film content for the app “around the clock” and put it onto the app for subscribers. Some examples are the two-minute clips that Fiit took to the CrossFit Games and used to showcase the product and the leaderboards to the attendees. They focused on shorter clips to prevent lines from building up.

  • “The way that those programs, the workouts, are structured, it’s working all three energy systems,” Shellard said. “We will have workouts very much focused on the short and sweet, powerful workouts.”
  • “We’ll have the really – in the anaerobic threshold – really painful workouts and we’ll have some long and steady workouts as well to make sure we’re building complete athletes.”

The future plans: Fiit remains focused on the launch of the Assault Bike Pro and Elite partnership, but there are plans in place for the future. Fiit will try to incorporate more functional fitness equipment and will strive to design games that will keep the members battling against each other on the leaderboard for the foreseeable future.

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Should You Be Taking Creatine?

No supplement can replace training, but new research is showing that creatine can certainly help you get more benefits. Check out how it works, why it works, and decide if you should be adding it to your daily shake.




Tickets To Wodapalooza

Nominate someone that is extraordinary inside and outside of the gym. Yerbae is gifting the top winners tickets to Wodapalooza in Miami.



Sumo Deadlift or Conventional Deadlift?

Which is better? Neither. But some athletes will be stronger in one vs. the other. And some athletes, especially injured ones, may be able to train one version more than the other based on their form and symptoms.



The Nano X1 For Nearly Half Off

Grab the official shoe of fitness for 40% off at Reebok this week. Perfect timing to grab a pair for Christmas to give the CrossFitter in your life (even if that's you). Use code "NANOFLASH" for 40% off at checkout.



Grain-Free Cinnamon Roll Cookies

These grain and gluten-free cinnamon roll cookies are deliciously soft and taste just like a cinnamon roll. Drizzle with a lovely vanilla glaze for a wonderful guilt-free treat this holiday season.


Celebrating a PR, hosting a fundraiser, this, that, or otherwise. Send us a tip.

  • 🎂Happy belated sweet 16 to Olivia Kerstetter, who won the 2021 14-15 girls division.
  • 🎂Happy birthday Steph Chung.
  • 🎂Happy 11th birthday Unit 22 CrossFit in Northampton, England.
  • Alex Gazan does 17 unbroken ring muscle-ups.
  • Olivia Kerstetter (see above lol), hits a 205 pound/93kg push-press PR.
  • Congratulations Amanda Krampf on getting your first ring muscle-up.
  • Congratulations 47-year-old Martin Palma from Hybrid Performance Method on the 200 pound/91kg snatch PR.

⛹️‍♀️The Mitchell Christian High School girls basketball team started CrossFit in pre-season to help strengthen athletes specifically around the knees to help prevent injuries:

  • Coach Chris Nebelsick: “Once [injuries] started happening at this rate, I started focusing our conditioning not only on endurance, but also knee strength and the proper ways to bend your knees. I learned a lot from being coached at CrossFit, so I’m thankful for finding out that information and understanding why things happen the way they happen, but just like years past, others will have to step up.”
4/2: CFC Clash (Tallahassee, FL)
4/6 - 4/9: The Crown (Mallorca, Spain)
4/12 - 4/30: Courage to Rise Against Sexual Assault (Online, )
4/15: Best Babes Riverbend (Godfrey, IL)
4/15: Spring Fever Competition (Shelton, CT)
4/15: Teams Of The Midway: MMFF (Cary, IL)
4/15 - 4/16: Butchers Battles (Copenhagen, Denmark)
4/15: Big Impact Games Throwdown (Rockford, IL)
4/15: Battle for the Mountain 8 (Dawsonville, GA)
4/15: The Main Thing (Teams of 4: FFMM) (Cullman, AL)
4/15: WOD Wars Fitness Festival (Dunedin, FL)
4/15: Girls Gone Rx Canada: Newmarket Central (Newmarket, Ontario)
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)
4/16: Warrior Affiliate League – Deuces Wild (La Habra, CA)
4/21 - 4/23: Bayside Classic (Daphne, AL)
4/22: Festivus Games (Gainesville, GA)
4/22: Festivus Games Teams of 3 (Canandaigua, NY)
4/22: The Festivus Games (Rio Rancho, NM)
4/22: Festivus Games (Canandaigua, NY)
4/22: Festivus @ CrossFit Loop (Castle Rock, CO)
4/22: Festivus Games – Teams and Individual @ Crossfit Unbreakable (Parsippany, NJ)
4/22: AMRAP4Autism (Forked River, NJ)
4/22: Spring Thaw Throwdown (Cumming, Georgia)
4/22 - 4/23: Benidorm Fitness Challenge (Benidorm, Alicante, Spain)
4/22: Festivus Games – Individuals and 3-Person Same Sex Teams (Savannah, GA)
4/22: Festivus Games (Willmar, MN)
4/29: Battle of the Elements (Ocala, FL)
4/29: CHLKDUP Classic (Nashville, TN)
4/29 - 4/30: Battle at the Lab (Clarksville, TN)
4/29: 2023 Spring Fling Olympic Weightlifting Meet (Chapel Hill, NC)
4/29: Warrior Slam IV (Waldwick, NJ)
4/29: CrossFit Waldwick – Warrior Slam IV (Waldwick, NJ)
5/6: Northwest Arkansas Basement Brawl (Fayetteville, AR)
5/6: O-Town Throwdown (Oconomowoc, WI)
5/6: Fittest on Main (Boaz, AL)
5/6: Fight for the Fittest TEAM (Ronkonkoma, NY)
5/6: Cynchro De Mayo Throwdown (Lapeer, MI)
5/6: Rep Your Box (Seattle, WA)
5/6: Code 3 Clash (Eagle, ID)
5/7: Spring Fling (Medina, OH)
5/13 - 5/14: Hold Fast Competition Team Challenge (Parabiago, Italy)
5/20: Girls Gone RX Wilmington (Wilmington, NC)
5/20: Girls Gone Rx San Antonio (San Antonio, TX)
5/20: Best Babes Northern Virginia (Vienna, VA)
5/20: Girls Gone Rx Wilmington (Wilmington, NC)
5/20: Girls Gone Rx Central Florida (Ocala, FL)
5/20: Girls Gone Rx Milwaukee (Milwaukee, WI)
5/20: Best Babes Arkansas (Little Rock, AR)
5/20: Limitless: All Female Competition (Batavia, OH)
5/20: Mayhem & Massacre (Winston-Salem, NC)

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