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The Professional Fitness Athletes’ Association Is Born

Morning Chalk Up

July 10

Active Life Rx

Good morning and welcome to the Morning Chalk Up. Games athletes have joined together to form an association to advocate on their own behalf and shape the sport of CrossFit going forward, Tommy Marquez has more. And, Harbor Park CrossFit in Racine, WI wins a key victory in court.

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“The best time to plant a tree was 20 years ago, and the second-best time is now, so we’re diving in and I’m confident we can work together to make some great changes.” – Brent Fikowski


Athletes Assemble! The Professional Fitness Athletes’ Association Is Born

  Athletes Assemble! The Professional Fitness Athletes’ Association Is Born  

A longtime rumored development in the sport of fitness has finally taken shape Thursday as the Professional Fitness Athletes’ Association (PFAA) has formed as a way for athletes within the sport of fitness to collectively organize and put forth a unified front for their voice and interests. The PFAA is officially incorporated as a Washington-based non-profit to serve the needs of the competitive fitness athlete community, and the formation comes at a time when the CrossFit community and the sport are in a massive state of flux. For the first time in history, CrossFit Inc. is going through an ownership change, and the sport is still working through the fallout of the COVID-19 pandemic to try and salvage some of its season.

Membership for the PFAA currently includes all 60 qualified athletes for the 2020 CrossFit Games along with an additional collection of prominent hand-picked members of the CrossFit community who have historically played major roles in representing other areas of the sport such as masters, teenagers, teams, and national champions from around the world.

  • Specific bylaws and the constitution of the PFAA are currently in development and will expand the scope of the association and its membership to additional groups such as masters, teens, teams, and recreational athletes as well.
  • Eight interim executive committee members have already been elected and include Brent Fikowski, Tia-Clair Toomey, Chandler Smith, Steph Chung, Jenn Ryan, Patrick Vellner, Cole Sager, and Adam Neiffer.

The primary function of the PFAA lies in its collective bargaining power by unifying athletes to augment their voices and interests to give them a seat at the table when it comes to the future of the sport, which includes the decision-making process for any changes or improvements being made. A handful of immediate matters include:

  • Athlete safety: Creating a set of best practices and standards for competitions and their many moving parts to ensure that athlete safety is the utmost priority. This also includes discussion about ways to improve the health and longevity of an athlete’s career when it comes to competition frequency and programming.

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Active Life Rx
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Harbor Park CrossFit Fights for Right to Stay Open During Pandemic

  Harbor Park CrossFit Fights for Right to Stay Open During Pandemic  

As CrossFit gym owners across the United State are once again considering the prospect of closing their doors in the wake of rising cases of COVID-19 nation-wide, one gym owner has decided to fight the prospect of closing. Harbor Park CrossFit owner David Yandel filed a lawsuit against the city of Racine, WI to keep his gym open.

Why it matters: Yandel’s suit was effective as the Racine County Circuit Judge ruled in favor, deciding that Racine’s COVID-19 ordinance was unconstitutional. The judge also ruled that Racine’s ordinance violated Wisconsin’s state constitution on the basis that it interfered with the “right to assemble”.

  • Yandel filed the lawsuit on the grounds that shutting down his gym based on the city’s ordinance would cause damage to his business.
  • Though initially a victory for Yandel, the judge suggested the city adopt a new plan to combat COVID-19 with more details and explaining the broad details of the original ordinance.
  • An appeal of decision is expected as the Mayor of Racine has requested an immediate stay of the judge’s decision.
  • Under the current ordinance, Racine’s public health administrator had the ability to order businesses to close.
  • Gym owners have been fighting local and state governments when it comes to opening, whether they were essential businesses and in what phase of opening they should be considered.

The bottom line: Most gyms across the country have just weathered a closing, some for upwards of four months, and cannot afford another closure. Yandel’s victory could be a blueprint for other gym owners who have reopened their business only to fear that they will have to close again.




Azariah and Stephanie Price on the Pit Fitness Ranch Teen Games

On this episode of the Clydesdale Fitness and Friends podcast, Scott Switzer and his team talk with Azariah and Stephanie Price about the Teen Games at the Pit Fitness Ranch. Check it out!

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Fiesta Mango Black Bean Quinoa Salad

Check out this healthy mango black bean quinoa salad with avocado; it will be your favorite easy lunch or summer salad to bring to parties. Dressed with a yummy honey chipotle lime dressing for vibrant, bright flavor. It stays good in the fridge for days and can be made ahead of time.

  Morning Chalk Up  



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Congratulations to Sergio H., who was the first to correctly answer which were the last CrossFit Games that Iceland did not win an Individual podium medal. The correct answer was the 2013 CrossFit Games. Sergio adds to his total of being first to answer the Trivia question correctly, now at seven times.

  • Today’s question: Who has won the most Masters Games Events?

Submit your answer.





Hero WOD for Vanessa Guillén

On Saturday, June 11, North Dallas CrossFit will honor the life of SPC Vanessa Guillén with a community Hero WOD, both in-person and via ZOOM. Vanessa Guillén, a U.S. Army soldier, was reported missing on April 23, 2020 from Fort Hood, Texas where she was stationed with the 3rd Cavalry Regiment. Guillén’s disappearance began to obtain national attention in June. Vanessa Guillén was 20 years old, from Houston, Texas. Spc Guillén was sexually harassed by an NCO (non-commissioned officer), she was vocal about this to her family and afraid to report the harassment. We want to help support survivors of sexual harassment and assault in the military and donate all proceeds of this event in Spc Vanessa Guillén’s name.

The event is free to enter, but donations are being accepted for Protect Our Defenders. Protect Our Defenders (POD) is the only national organization solely dedicated to ending the epidemic of rape and sexual assault in the military and to combating a culture of pervasive misogyny, sexual harassment, and retribution against victims. Here is a donation link.

  • The event will be capped at 8-person heats and will be entirely outdoors due to COVID-19. The heats will run 7:30am-10:00am. RSVP here
  • Join virtually via ZOOM.
  • Find more on the WOD and additional details and register!

From event coordinator, Margot Putty: “I am a survivor of sexual assault, I also served in the Texas Army National Guard for 6 years and dealt with harassment while enlisted. I was first sexually assaulted when I was 18, I was always angry and became increasingly dependent on alcohol. I then enlisted into the military and unfortunately had dealt with sexual harassment while in FT. Lee, Virginia.”

  • “I wanted to create this event in order to help other sexual assault/ harassment survivors, like Vanessa Guillén and myself find an outlet and know they are not alone.”
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