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4 ways to leverage the CrossFit Games Open to strengthen your community and add new members

Posted by: Devin Glage

The CrossFit Games Open season is an exciting time of year in most affiliate gyms. There is a buzz in the air that is almost palpable, and it's a great time to get your community juiced and strengthen client bonds as they test their fitness against the greater CrossFit universe.

Here are a few ways you can make sure your affiliate is prepared to take maximum advantage of the CrossFit Games Open:


1. Stoke the fire.

If your clients follow anything CrossFit on social media, they're sure to be tuned in to Open season. Use this to your advantage. While not everyone is out there to win the CrossFit Games, and for some, competing in the Open can seem irrelevant to their fitness goals, these same people can become die-hard supporters of gym's community by engaging them in some friendly (and fun) competition.

Unless you've been living under a rock for the past few years, you've probably heard of the Intramural Open Model developed by Chris Copper of Catalyst Athletics.

The Intramural Open Model is a great way to drive client engagment and get people who otherwise might not care about competing involed. Appeal to your client base's inate tribalism by having them create teams, uniforms, mascots, team cheers etc. You will be amazed at the results!

2. Stock the shop with recovery tools

I'm paraphrasing here, but I once heard a wise man (and founder of an international functional fitness movement) say "people will kill themselves for points". Going 100% in competition can take it's toll on the body. Help your clients make the most of their recovery time between events, and add some retail revenue to your bottom line by stocking your pro shop or retail section with products your client's are going to want (and probably need).

When you're sore, injured, or have torn calluses on your hands, no-one wants to wait days for Amazon or Rogue Fitness to deliver the goods. Reinforce your expertise, keep that revenue in-house, and make it easy for your clients recover. Win, win, win. 

3. Use the Open as a marketing opportunity.

Who doesn't want more clients? The CrossFit Games Open is a great opportunity to leverage your client's eagerness for team points to get your brand some exposure in your local area. Team up with neighbouring business owners, charities, and community groups to embed tasks and challenges from your Intramural Open (see #1 above) at their stores or events. Mini-fitness challenges and random-acts-of-kindness in your community are just 2 examples that are fun for everyone, and will go a long way to increase awareness of your brand, as well as demonstrate the strength and quality of your gym's community and the product that you offer. Oh, and did I mention that this marketing can be done 100% free!

4. Make it a social event

Whether you decide to run the Intramural Open Model or not, the CrossFit Games Open is still a great opportunity to bring your community together. Pick a weekly day and time make this your scheduled "competition period" . Encourage your members to grab some food, some drinks, and some friends and head down to the gym to cheer on the competitors and share a laugh. If you are running the Intramural, you could even pair this weekly event with some "non-fitness" social games like beer-pong or flip cup to allow spectators to score points for their respective teams. The more opportunities you give your client's to bond over common experiences, the stronger your community will get.

So get creative, and good luck!

Posted by Devin Glage on

My passion for training comes from a burning desire to experience all that life has to give, and a nagging fear that at some point my body will let me down.

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