The 2016 Reebok CrossFit ™ Games were about nothing less than finding the “Fittest on Earth” ™ and that happened in the StubHub Center located in Carson, California from July 19 – 24. From the initial group of more than one hundred thousand athletes who entered the competition in February, to the 40 men, 40 women, 40 teenagers, 40 teams and 200 masters who made it to the finals, the competition was a fierce and the physical challenges were grueling.
One of the coolest part of this competition of ultimate fitness is that, unlike the Olympics or the Super Bowl or any other organized sports championship, the athletes (and the spectators) have no idea what to expect in the way of events. According to the CrossFit Games’ website, “A key element to a fair test of fitness is the unknown and unknowable. Athletes cannot train for what they do not know. At each CrossFit Games, the athletes engage in a series of challenges unknown to them until right before the competition. The combination of highly trained athletes and unknown events makes for an explosive mix.” It does indeed!
Three Stages of Competition
The Games season is broken down into three stages. The Open started on February 25, 2016, at CrossFit gyms and garages around the world and consisted of a five-week, five workouts completion. Workouts were released online every Thursday and the athletes had until the following Monday to submit their scores. Anyone who was 14 and older could sign up for the competition.
The second round of competition – the Regionals – featured the best athletes from all 17 regions. This was staged May 13 – 29, 2016, and they were live, three-day events. At the conclusion of this stage, top performers competed for the five qualifying spots at the CrossFit Games.
The finals of this ultimate test – the 2016 Reebok CrossFit Games – featured the fittest of the fit, in a never-say-die battle for world dominance. It was not for the faint-of-heart, for either the participants or the spectators!
A Wide Variety of Different Challenges and Relative Scoring
According to the organizers of the event, “The Games are a playing field where the fittest athletes are given a chance to distinguish themselves through consistently exceptional performances. In a single weekend, the CrossFit Games test athletes’ capabilities across broad time and modal domains. A wide variety of different events are intentionally included. In the past, these have ranged from dusty hill sprints to sandbag carries to ocean swims and endurance events.”
As for scoring the performances of the athletes, “The Games use a relative scoring system. Athletes are rewarded according to their placing in each event relative to their peers—not according to their absolute performance on that event. To the degree which the organizers have done their job, the Games athletes are the 40 fittest men and 40 fittest women on Earth. All of them have qualified through multiple steps to get there. It’s up to the Games to determine who among them is the fittest.”
Click here to see the list of the physical challenges for all groups for the 2016 Reebok CrossFit Games.
And the Winners Are…
The Top Five Teams
CrossFit Mayhem – Cookville, Tennessee
12 Labours CrossFit – Columbia, Maryland
CrossFit Yas – Abu Dhabi
CrossFit Dynamix – Astoria, New York
CrossFit OC3 – Davenport, Iowa
The Top Five Women
Katrin Tanja Davidsdottir – Natick, Maine
Tia-Clair Toomey – Gladstone, Australia
Ragnheiour Sara Sigmundsdottir – Reykjanesbaer, Iceland
Samantha Briggs – Manchester, England
Kari Pearce – New York, New York
The Top Five Men
Mathew Fraser – Williston, Vermont
Ben Smith – Chesapeake, Virginia
Patrick Vellner – Montreal, Canada
Brent Fikowski – Kelowana, Canada
Cole Sager – Seattle, Washington
For the complete breakdown of the finish of all contestants, click here for the 2016 Leaderboard.