How to Use the Open to Build Community


We are officially two weeks away from the Open.

Dave Castro has started his Instagram hints. Friday Night Lights events are in full-swing planning mode. And if you’re at my gym, your lungs are burning from all the crazy conditioning we’ve been doing the past month.

As always though, I want to ask what the Open means at your Box, Affiliate. Is it just a five-week workout compilation your members will do to give you a baseline for your gym’s programming? Or is it something more?

Personally, I think the Open is an incredible idea. For five weeks, thousands of people around the world will test their fitness skills against one another by doing the same five workouts. It’s not every day I get to throwdown with an athlete in Russia and China. Heck, I hardly ever test my WODing abilities outside of Kentucky!

Even more than that, I think how Affiliates are utilizing the Open to build community is fascinating. Gyms around the world are going to host screenings on Thursdays. On Fridays, dozens of athletes will take on whatever madness was announced the night before, typically as other members cheer on. There’s going to be a whole lot of PRing and some friendly trash talk.

So, how are you using the Open to build community? There’s a plethora of ideas out there on how to go about utilizing the five-week competition in your gym. Whether it’s running Open heats all weekend, hosting a party on Friday night, screening the workout on Thursday or creating a team-challenge around the competition, you can find a way to make the Open about building community.

Because that is one of the powers of your business: community. It’s why your members come back. It’s why your Coaches stay. It’s why people rave about you to their coworkers and the other parents at the PTA meeting. Why wouldn’t you stock that community with fuel and give it the chance to burn brightly?

Here’s some ways Affiliates have got their Boxes involved in the Open. Check them out and see what you can do to bring the Open home:

Throwdown Thursday with CrossFit Stamford

Throwdown Thursday with Raleigh CrossFit

Throwdown Thursday with CrossFit Portsmouth

Affiliates React to 16.1

Affiliates React to 16.2

Heather is the editor for Box Pro Magazine. Contact her at