Beyond the Whiteboard have released all their stats for the 2021 CrossFit Open.
For the last three weeks, Beyond the Whiteboard has been collecting data from all those participating in the Open; including locations, divisions, and average results — which gives us a lot of insight into how the event played out in numbers.
An estimated 245,000 athletes signed up for the 2021 Open, signalling an upward trend from previous years. This might be thanks to the inclusion of the Adaptive, Equipment-Free, Foundations and Masters 65+ Divisions, making it CrossFit’s most inclusive year ever. Here are some takeaways from the numbers
1. 50% of all participants are from the USA
Unsurprisingly, over half of all athletes who signed up for the CrossFit Open came from the United States. Given that this is where CrossFit originated it’s not surprising, but that said with further emphasis being placed on CrossFit internationally we might see more non-Americans getting involved in the coming years.
Other countries with the most participation were Australia (6.4%), Canada (4.5%), the United Kingdom (4.7%), and France (3.7%).
2. There was a big improvement between 17.1 & 21.2
The first time dumbbell snatches and burpee box jump-overs appeared in the Open was back in 2017 — and what a difference four years makes! Across all divisions, the scores for 21.2 were higher than 17.1, which indicates an overall improvement in endurance and strength in the scene as a whole.
3. More participation in Equipment-Free Division from countries in lockdown
Due to the upset caused by the pandemic, CrossFit Inc. included Equipment-Free and Foundations Divisions to make this year’s Open more accessible to those without access to a gym.
From the results we can see that the countries experiencing nationwide lockdowns during March such as Germany and the UK had the biggest increase in participation in these categories, which means that the inclusion of the home-friendly divisions was successful in keeping the community engaged.
4. 21.3 caused some problems
When 21.3 was announced many people probably groaned at all the chest-to-bar, toes-to-bar, and butterfly muscle-ups they had to perform. These gymnastic movements require a certain level of strength and skill to RX in the time cap, and that shows in the Individual RX completion rate for 21.3.
The Russian Federation had the highest finish percentage at 18%, followed by Mexico at 14%, Italy at 13%, and France and Brazil at 10% each. The low completion rate is testament to how tough it was.
5. 21.2 was the “easiest” workout to complete
If 21.3 was the hardest workout of the 2021 Open, 21.2 was the easiest — but that doesn’t mean it was easy. 21.2 saw the most RX completion in the time cap; with 63% completion in Sweden, 61% in the Russian Federation and 58% in Norway.
6. USA lifts the heaviest
In both the Men’s and Women’s individual divisions the biggest lifts for 21.4 were cleared by athletes from the USA.
The biggest lift overall came from Graciano Rubio who cleared an enormous 365lbs in the 21.4 complex. A whole 10lbs above Sweden’s Oscar Gillström, who cleared the 2nd biggest lift at 353lbs.
7. Russian athletes are very strong
We have talked a lot about the strength of the Americans in 21.4, but the Russian Federation had some of the highest percentiles of athletes across the board competing RX in 21.1, 21.2, and 21.3. When it comes to international CrossFit, the Russian Federation is starting to make itself felt.
8. The Women’s biggest lifts were equal to the Men’s average
According to the data, the biggest lifts of 21.4 for the women fell in the average weight of lifts in the men. That said, CrossFit’s most elite women were lifting bigger than the majority of men who competed in the Open. Overall Women’s Individual winnter Tia-Clair Toomey-Orr cleared 230lbs, but the biggest lift in her division was Christine Middleton; whose 142lb challenged some of the most elite men in the sport.