The CrossFit 2021 season

What’s gone, what’s new and what’s back?!

On the 17th of December Crossfit released the 2021 season schedule on their Crossfit Games website.

Let’s just say it’s a lot to process. Many changes have been made to the structure of the season starting from the Open. 

In this article we break down for you what stayed the same, what’s been added, changed or removed and what has made a return from the past.

What’s the same


The Open’s history has been one of accessibility.

The concept behind this worldwide event is to give everyone the opportunity to take part in the competition.

From Crossfit newbies to elitè competitors everyone will be doing the same workouts, with necessary scaling of course.

This yearly tradition has been key in bringing together the sport’s global community and has proven time and time again to be a challenge to athletes of all levels. 

The 2021 Open will be no different, if anything access to participation will be increased. The changes made to this edition were done specifically to allow more gyms to take part in the Open. Additionally options will be given to those who can’t or choose not to return to the gym for the time being. 

Where are the CrossFit Games 2021?

Scheduled to be on July 26 in Madison, Wisconsin. We are sure everyone is looking forward to watching athletes return to the Games stadium this summer hopefully without any delays or continuous rescheduling. 

What’s changed

The CrossFit Open will be shorter

Yes you read that correctly.

The 2021 Open will only last three weeks.

We are unsure if this should be something to celebrate or frown upon.

crossfit open 2021

Roza and his team at CFHQ have justified the decision by explaining that the shorter duration will simplify logistics for box owners.

With two weeks off the regular Open duration Castro will have to prove his programming talent to continue serving a well rounded event. On the bright side we will have to go through a little less pain from the hands of the chief programmer of the Crossfit Games.

More date changes

The Open has had an unfortunate couple of years since 2018 being pushed around throughout the year.

2021 will be no different.

This year the event will start in March. Although the dates are much closer to the original start of the competition (which has historically been sit in February) the change will hopefully be very beneficial.

Roza motivated pushing the start to March by claiming hopefully by then more gyms will be able to Open up again to the public. 

What’s new

Crossit Quarterfinals

Approximately the top 10% of athletes participating in the Open will make their way to the next stage of this 2021 season.

Deemed as “Quarterfinals” this event will also be online like the Open but will take place in April.

quarterfinals crossfit

Seemingly a mix between Regionals and the Age division qualifiers, the event will have athletes coming from the same continental regions compete against each other to advance to the next stage.

CrossFit Semifinals

There will be ten semifinal events hosted by CrossFit partners across six continents.

The competitions will be in-person and will ensure that at least one athlete from each continent can qualify for the Games.

A somewhat valid alternative to having hundreds of national champions flock to Madison for what will be, for most of them, a single event competition.

Adaptive category

The adaptive category has been finally introduced to the Crossfit Games.

This division will allow to bring more inclusivity and representation to Crossfit’s biggest sporting events starting with the Open. Members of the adaptive community are some of the most strong willed athletes on planet Earth and it’s great to see them get the recognition they deserve.

Last chance qualifier

To give Crossfit fans one last thrill before the big event and offer elitè athletes the opportunity to throwdown one more time to earn themselves the last Games tickets CFHQ has announced there will be one last event held one at the end of June.

This “Last-chance qualifier” will be held online and will be the last Crossfit official competition held before the Games.

What’s made a return

Affiliate cup

The Affiliate cup will be making it’s return to the competitive Crossfit scene. In previous years the Cup had been replaced by a more general Team division at the Games.

The division allowed for elitè athletes from different regions of the world to come together and form super-teams. With the return of the Affiliate cup we expect this trend to retreat as usually the Cup requires all the athletes of the team to train together in the same gym.

Just as the individual competitors teams will have to take part in the Open to advance to Quarterfinals, Semifinals and Games.