As CrossFit continues to grow there is a divide happening….hobbyists and professionals.
The growth of the CrossFit games is a perfect example. Five years ago anyone could have attended the first ever CrossFit Games where they pulled wods out of a hopper and the winner took home $500.00 cash. I think there may have been 100 people total at that event. Fast forward to 2011, 29,000 people started the CrossFit season fighting for 45 men’s and 45 women’s spots.
With the extreme growth each year, it’s getting more and more difficult to get to the CrossFit Games. For the most part, your ‘hobbyist’ CrossFitter is no longer going to have a shot at making the CrossFit Games. An athlete is going to need to dedicate themselves to the sport, watching what they eat, how they train, when they train, when they sleep etc. Much of their life is going to be revolved around CrossFit… aka it’ll become their ‘profession’.
Much of the same is happening on the affiliate side. I’ve seen boxes opened as a side business or as a way to make money so that the owner can do other things. I call that a ‘hobby’. I and other box owners have put all our eggs in one basket opening an affiliate with no back up plan and our only desire is to be a great coach. I call that a ‘profession’.
Now don’t get me wrong…. not everyone fits in one category or the other. There’s always a grey area. I can only speak from my personal experience. I have sacrificed everything for CrossFit. I quite my job, left my MBA program, sold everything I owned and opened an affiliate; Coca CrossFit. If someone asks me what I do for a living my response is; I own a CrossFit gym and compete professionally in the sport. This is my profession.
As CrossFit continues to grow and the number of athletes and affiliates continues to expand it’s going to only increase the divide between hobbyists and professionals. I know in the last year alone I’m one of 9 gyms that opened in a 60mile radius in Cleveland and there are 3 more possibly opening within 15 miles of my affiliate. I couldn’t be more excited!
I know in my profession the more people that are CrossFitting in the area the more people there will be talking about and possibly trying CrossFit. The more people trying CrossFit, the more people CrossFitting the more potential athletes in the area and for me…training partners. ALL GOOD THINGS! I know I’m working my tail off everyday to improve myself within the profession of CrossFit, and have no doubt I’ll continue to impact the lives of my clients. This is NOT a hobby for me, this is my profession.
What do you think?