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We’re often asked about why, in general, CrossFit workouts and competitions don’t have categories or movements that are relative to bodyweight. I typically have the same answer every time.

Consider a firefighter weighing in at 70kg. He/she is part of the team responding to a house fire and finds an unconscious person, weighing in at around 90kg, in one of the rooms. The said firefighter already has gear on them weighing about 30kg – all set gear so it doesn’t change in load depending on the size of the firefighter. Are they going to hang back and call in one of the heavier members of the team to pull the person out, or are they going to get the job done themselves? Well, I certainly hope they’re going to do it themselves!

The analogy is of a simple premise: Life knows not weight categories! And in CrossFit, we’re training for life. So CrossFit competitions, like the Open, Regionals and Games, will test the athletes in very much the same way.

Weight categories in some sports, however, are a necessity. But it’s a necessity that rewards the specialist and we’re doing everything but specialising in CrossFit. We do also use bodyweight as a guideline in some workouts, depending on the desired outcome of the workout, but prefer using loads as a percent of your true 1-rep maxes as a guide because then we’re basing the prescribed loads relative to your abilities and not relative to your bodyweight.

And having to score athletes relative to bodyweight in competition or asking you guys to calculate loads that way in training would be a logistical mess. Have you ever taken note of athletes calculating loads when percentages are programmed in class??!!

So, little guys, get stronger. Bigger guys, unless you have excess body fat to lose you’ve got nothing to complain about so up your gymnastics game.

(Thanks to Devan & GC for today’s blog inspiration 🙂 )


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