In CrossFit Games, Videos

July 14, 2010

Video Article

In four years, the CrossFit Games have grown from a small event—“the Woodstock of fitness”—to a huge competition featuring elite athletes from all corners of the world.

In this video series, Dave Castro recounts the history of the Games, which were held at his parents’ ranch until permitting requirements necessitated a move to a different location in 2010.

In 2007, the Games featured three events: a run, a triplet and a strength event. About 70 competitors and 150 fans showed up for the first competition that started a new sport.

In 2008, the Games exploded, with close to 300 competitors registering to compete. All of a sudden, CrossFit HQ had to figure out how to put that many competitors through a test of elite fitness. When the event wrapped up, it was clear that a yearly tradition had been created.

The third edition of the CrossFit Games required a full year of planning and a bottleneck that came in the form of regional qualifiers. Top athletes had to earn a spot in the Games by besting their peers in one of the regionals held all over the world. The competition season produced a field of elite athletes who were tested by eight epic WODs in Aromas.

Finally, Castro offers a few words of advice to athletes preparing for the fourth edition of the CrossFit Games in Carson, Calif.

Part 1: 9min 09sec.
Part 2: 9min 35 sec
Part 3: 18min 46sec

Additional video: The Complete 2009 CrossFit Games, published December 2009-January 2010.

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Part 1:
Part 2:
Part 3:


15 Comments on “The History of the CrossFit Games”


wrote …

Excellent video!

However, "The History of Dave Castro's Hair" may be a more fitting title...yes? THAT has been "hugely impactful" (my spell check is not recognizing that word) on the development of MY CrossFit experience. Perhaps a sequel featuring Sherwood???

In EC's words, we might call his stylish creativity "amAzing."

Dave: you weren't kidding about the dreads, were you? I can barely STAND the anticipation!!!



wrote …

Speaking of DC, I have only one thing to say and it includes how I feel about his hair. Sexy!


wrote …

Is it me or were Dave Castro and Kaka separated at birth?


wrote …

I can only cross my fingers and hope in 2011 we will see additional opportunities for the masters.


wrote …

Anybody ever see the Navy SEAL Workout Series videos on YouTube? Special Operator 1st Class Dave Castro had a Navy regulation haircut back then!


wrote …

Holy Fabio!


Dane Thomas wrote …

Thanks for giving us this insight into some of the thought that has been behind the evolution of the games so far. Dave is a driven individual with many outstanding qualities, and his involvement as a positive force making the games what they are today is beyond dispute. That having been established, I hope that he is capable of being at least a bit more self-critical in his heart when it comes to certain issues than he appears to be on these films.

Other than the weight spread for the men's deadlifts in the '09 games he basically refuses to acknowledge a number of potential lessons to be learned or things that might have been better if they had been done differently. Doing things imperfectly (in retrospect) is inevitable for those charting a path into the unknown, but his difficulty with acknowledge areas where room for improvement might exist and learn from them is unfortunate.

As an example, I don't doubt for a minute that he did everything anybody could reasonably expect to insure a fair competition in the sledge event. Despite meticulous preparation, I think that the video shows that some stakes drove in more easily than others. It might have had something to do with the fact that multiple stakes were driven at varying angles in close proximity to each other. Not having considered that ahead of time is completely understandable, and I'm not suggesting that it could have been prevented or that adjustments should have been made in the results. I'm simply making the observation that he appears to have gone into defensive mode on this question (as well as some others), justifying actions and decisions in retrospect and refusing to admit that the other viewpoints might have merit.

Admitting that things didn't turn out exactly as everyone had hoped and maybe being open to positive suggestions about how to make things better in the future would cost him nothing, but it might help make future games to be even better, as well as help him earn a bit more respect from his detractors. It would make both him and the games even stronger. Isn't that what CrossFit is all about?


wrote …

Minute 5:34 of video #3 is the money. I get jacked every time I see that.


wrote …

Why are the events still being decided as the event is happening? I'm not saying that anything was manipulated, but why even go down that road?


replied to comment from Matthew Mills

matthew mills...dude? wtf? what road? who thinks that? that is absurd!!! get outta here with that talk


replied to comment from Matthew Mills

I agree.

The events absolutely should not be programmed or adjusted after the competition has started. Dave Castro even gave the qualifier "Chris Spealler is going to hate me for this but". He recognizes the flaw, yet continues with the changes anyways. He then says it happened again with last year's chipper - it was finalized that day! Logistical changes are one thing, but rep schemes are an essential component of any workout.

Even without intentionally rigging the Games, it's a bias that cannot be avoided. Everyone knows that workouts like Angie or Barbara favor Speal over the '200 pounders'. And vice versa. This is the reason why scientists do 'double blind' experiments.

Set the workouts ahead of time. Keep them in a lock box. Let the athletes qualify and then hit them with The Test (of fittest person). Changing after it starts is just poor form.

The Games have been a great success, and no one would have ever known with out this video being released, but it just shouldn't happen.


wrote …

I agree with Matt. If the tasks can be changed mid way through the event & the powers that be are ok with that then the professionalism is just not there.
I absolutely love the whole Crossfit world, community & general set up, the ability to scale up & down is great, in the box, but that said the WOD stays the WOD & does not change half way through the day.
BUT we are talking about a games here. At an event like the games the tasks should be set before the start & not altered unless a particular task is injuring or killing the atheletes.
So what would be next, the competitors choose what they want to do & get awarded points? Spealer is the winner of the body weight games, Orlando is the winner of the heavy games, Salo wins the all rounder games... WTF!!!
The games has grown & rightly so, it is the greatest & most accurate spectacal of fittest human on the planet. It should also be the best controlled in every aspect to be able to uphold that claim.


wrote …

Good job Dave. Thanks to you and CrossFit and Coach for that history session.
Loved it!

Dave, ignore all the whiners and complainers out there. We adult humans understand you and CrossFit are doing the best you can everyday.


wrote …

"The Storm of competition that was about to engulf us"... Waxing rather eloquent Dave!

Great Job!


wrote …


That was a great narrative. Must be damned exciting to start something like this from scratch and watch it grow this fast.

Your passion for CF and for designing its premier competition is unmistakable.

The ability to have a plan and then adapt and overcome logistical issues effectively --and essentially in real-time-- is an admirable and rare skill.

I can't wait to see what's been cooked-up for this year and what the next evolution of the CF games looks like.

Well done,

Kevin Sandberg

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