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Mikko Salo: Coming to America—Boston and Reebok Part 2 by Various - CrossFit Journal

In Athletes, CrossFit, Videos

March 20, 2011

Video Article

Join Mikko Salo, the 2009 CrossFit Games champion, on his road trip across America—but this trip isn’t quite the same as the CrossFit Journal’s last Road Trip with Dave Lipson, Rob Orlando and Dave Castro. A man of few words, Salo is rarely distracted from his quest to better his training.

While visiting the Reebok World Headquarters in Canton, Mass., Salo and Juha Kangasniemi help coach a CrossFit class led by Heather Bergeron. Bergeron is ecstatic about her Reebok athletes.

“They are just so open to it. They’re all so active. They’re just an active group of people in general, so now they have this kind of like common thread that brings them all together, and they all work out together now,” she says.

A fully outfitted traditional gym lies virtually unused while employees flock to the CrossFit box.

“Nobody wants to use the machines anymore,” Kangasniemi observes.

Even without advertising, the box is becoming a sensation.

“It’s contagious. People are telling other people,” says veteran sports-marketing executive and Super Bowl champion Don Hasselbeck. “I think people are starting to realize that they’re getting stronger. It’s changing their attitude. The community it’s built here is absolutely amazing.”

CrossFit has brought together all tiers of Reebok society.

“When you’re in a class like that you could be a senior executive right next to someone from accounting, someone in finance, or someone who’s a designer or a developer,” Hasselbeck says.

10min 55sec

Additional reading: If the Shoe Fits … by Kevin Daigle, published Feb. 7, 2011.

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21 Comments on “Mikko Salo: Coming to America—Boston and Reebok Part 2”


wrote …

I see you Mikko spitting game at that girl! Get 'em! haha


wrote …

Why is it called "Mikko Salo: Coming to America" and not "This is Reebok Crossfit" ???


wrote …

the guys from Reebok probably discuss every shirt that Mikko has to wear ( you got your shoes, your shirt,pants Mikko? Ok, then we are safe)


wrote …

How cool would it be to have Heather, Mikko, and Juha train you?
= Pretty damn cool.


wrote …

Sad to see Reebok get involved really. I liked the small, unique feeling crossfit has and think when corporate America gets involved it will somehow be lessened. I could be wrong and hopefully am, but I just get a feeling I am not.


wrote …

The evil empire attitude to business is a bit sad to tell the truth. Did you guys hear them say it took them just two weeks to put their box together? That speaks of resources, which is what big business brings to the party, it's the capital in capitalism. You can build your house one brick at a time, like a good little piggy, and feel all virtuously socialistic, or you can pull your head out of your *** and bring resources to bear to bring the project to scale in quick time.

Reebok are getting involved because they see a good thing, and yes they want to make money off it. But they can only make money if everybody else sees it as a good thing too. Corrupting crossfit is no more in Reebok's interests than it is in coaches. Do you think Coach is selling his soul? Hardly.

Please accept the limitations of the media, i.e. you can't hear my tone of voice, etc. this comment is not intended to insult anyone who wants to keep the cult thing going, just to point out that if you want to improve the life and health of a greater number of people keeping it small isn't the way to do it.


wrote …

Heather is a Quebec Nordiques fan! Go les bleus!


wrote …

Got it. Crossfit pimps out Mikko Salo to sport the latest in Reebok brand apparel and Reebok Crossfit builds a big-fancy-clean-shiny box which creates a seismic corporate kumbaya.

At least a journal subscription allows access to the archives. Unfortunately, I have to sift through more and more of this H.Q. propaganda to get to the quality stuff...


wrote …

I don't think Greg Glassman has any intent of letting Reebok control CrossFit or the CrossFit games. The company has every right to (and should do so) sponsor elite CrossFit athletes. Money talks, HQ saw an opportunity to pony up a cool million in cash prizes for the competitors.

Why no bashing of Rogue sponsorship? Why no commentary on their dominant position as CF Games equipment provider? What delineates Rogue, Again Faster, Progenex, Skins, etc. from Reebok? Not much but size. The community is smart enough and protective enough to allow only the useful products and helpful companies into our midst. I trust HQ and the community to filter out any BS.

What if Reebok makes a shoe on par with five-fingers or inov8s? Surely they have the capability to make a shoe that some CrossFitters would actually want, and possibly cheaper than the alternatives due to their enormous production capacity.

I think we'll be OK. Although I would like the title to just say "The CrossFit Games."


replied to comment from Will Grant

Agreed. It ain't what it used to be.


wrote …

"Curves is a franchise. CrossFit is not and will never be. Curves franchisees are intent on making money. Flying the CrossFit flag suggests nothing about monetary intent".

This was taken from the Garage Gym 2 the revolution article 2005, alot has changed since then. I hope evetyones right about the future of CrossFit, It has and will always be a big part of my life. I just miss the old days, I think they should go back to the ranch for the games. Other then that having fun doing the Open, Good luck to all.


wrote …

Great video and congratulations Reebok on your vision and commitment. CrossFit is changing lives for the better and you have chosen to invest millions of dollars in the passion of the athletes and trainers who are grinding it out every day to get a little bit stronger, a little bit faster, a little more mobile and a lot healthier. You have backed the right horse.

And congratulations CrossFit for finding a partner that is committed to the program and will help bring healthier lives to more people.

There are a billion ways to make money on this planet; you both are doing it the right way.


wrote …

You can give back your prize money after you win the games. Reebok is not forcing the money on anybody.


replied to comment from Matt Solomon

And what exactly did it used to be that is so markedly different now? I have been doing CrossFit since 2005 and nothing about my daily experience or the people I meet has changed. I go to the main page, I get the WODs, I wander into my garage and hit them as hard as I can. Nothing has changed. I get the opportunity to meet about 200 new CrossFitters every month through the Level 1 seminars. They are the same cool, passionate, dedicated fun people I have been meeting for the last 5-6 years. Nothing has changed.

Actually, a few things have changed. CrossFit provides more information and resources than it did years ago. We have reached out and joined forces with many other exciting, knowledgeable people/communities/organizations in various realms of fitness. This has provided CF'ers with a wealth of information. And something else has changed, there are opportunities developing for talented athletes to pursue the sport they love and perhaps get sponsorship or serious prize money.

If we stayed the same, we would be stagnant. We are constantly developing, growing, and improving. So, in that sense, I agree. There has been change. Those aspects ARE different. They are better. However, what has not changed is the community. CrossFitters are still CrossFitters. It does not matter if you are in Chicago, or off the coast of Spain (which I was this morning)........the community is the same great one that I found in 2005.


wrote …

I am sure greg glassman is not hurting for money. Every monday is a testament to that when they post pictures of 100-200 people that have invested their money in the crossfit name. That means crossfit is bringing in $100,000 to $200,000 every weekend from seminars. That number is probably low and will only increase with the rising popularity (not to mention merchandise, journal subscription, and affiliate costs). I have been crossfitting for 5 years and have noticed the growth but at the same time there is in no way been a decrease in the quality of the content or programming.

Step back for a second and remove this 20 lb weight vest of negativity and look at it from the lowest denominator. At the very least you get your programming for free, if you want to take it a step further you plop down the $25 for the journal, maybe you buy a $40 dollar shirt (or if you pay attention wait for a sale) if you are so inclined you join an affiliate at $150 a month, or you invest a couple $1000 in your own home gym (if you are creative it can be a lot less), or you become affiliated. Each step is just another way of expressing your commitment and passion to a program that truly changes your view on fitness. I am not certified but can honestly say that I am above a level I certification in knowledge and experience but because of the impact that crossfit has had on my life I will eventually pay back this impact by becoming certified and or affiliated.

Coach has the right to make money and now he has the added responsibility of promoting something that is bigger than himself, something that adds money to many other people's wallets too. If you disagree with Reebook and their gym and their products, then go support your local affiliate or open your own garage gym to your friends and keep that underground flavor, heck even call it John Smith Fitness Emporium and make money off it if your so desire. Just like the gpp program that lays a solid foundation, coach glassman has laid a solid foundation for numerous people to build a business and lifestyle that is different from the mundanity of most career paths. In the end like Pat Sherwood said it is the community that drives crossfit and it has not changed.


wrote …

Well said, Pat & Brian. When I finally plunked down the 25 bucks for my Journal subscription (after perusing the site's free content for over a year) I was floored by the sheer value of the information made available--thousands of dollars' worth, easily, and it's not to be taken lightly. A few months later when I found myself vastly over-prepared for the L1 certification I really didn't mind; I figure that for a self-trained CrossFitter like myself and many others the cert is merely a formality but a necessary one, and HQ has more than earned that for their unbelievable generosity.
For all the myopic complainers who wax nostalgic and kvetch about how things just ain't what they used to be: Fact is, the guts and bolts of CrossFit are basically the same but our resources and our reach have expanded many times over just since I started following in '08. That will irrevocably change the implementation of things; accept this and get over it. I'm optimistic about where we're headed and I know I'm in good company.


wrote …

Pat, Brian and Justin... thank you for commenting.
Saved the the trouble of responding to the "haters".

CrossFit! Love it! or Leave it!


wrote …

By the way... that video was AWsomE! Heather, Mikko, and Juha are kick butt Coaches. Wish I was there :(


wrote …

I want to work at Reebok! Talk about a job perk.


wrote …

Im with Pat.


Zack Bennett wrote …

Im sure hockey fans didn't freak out when reebok sponsored hockey or whatever other sports they sponsor. Its not like reebok is forcing you to buy and wear their product. They're just giving you a chance to win a quarter of a million. Who knows maybe they'll start making olympic shoes or some crossfit suited products.

Stop your complaining about it and start training and maybe you can take some of reebok's money.

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