The Open Report: Week 6 — It’s Here!

Editor’s Note: “The Open Report” is a multi-part series by Mike Halpin that breaks down the current CrossFit Open registration numbers and examines where they stand in historical contexts. You can read the previous installments here.

We have arrived. The 2024 CrossFit Open starts on February 29, at 12 p.m. PT / 3 p.m. ET, with the announcement of 24.1 by Dave Castro. 

We are in the ramp-up period this week, and things are looking up.

That’s what I will be touching on today. Over on my Instagram, Known & Knowable, I have been tracking and posting a few data points (mostly) daily. First, the daily totals of the “Open Division” (16-54-year-old men and women) and then the age group divisions that fall outside that 16-54 group (14-15 boys and girls and 55+ men and women).

That currently looks like this:

Click to enlarge

In week two of the Open Report, I touched on this comparison to 2022 and 2023 and how it didn’t give a good representation without a bunch of caveats. For example: 

In 2023, registration started weeks to months earlier. 

The 2023 Open started nearly two weeks earlier in February than 2022 and 2024. 

So, about halfway into our tracking window, I started adding in a better year-over-year “Days Out” comparison. In short, I compared registration based on the relative start date of the Open itself rather than the calendar date from one year to the next. 

This helps to align the years better and resolves the issue I found if you just compared February 16 to February 16. In 2023, that was the day of 23.1, but in 2024, that was still two weeks out from 24.1. To align that, I compared the current registration daily total to the last two pre-season periods on the same days out from the ‘X.1’ announcement date.

Here is what that looks like:

As you can see, 2024 is tracking well ahead of 2022 but has slowed down in the last few days, settling in at only 1,651 registrants ahead of 2023. The lull could just be people waiting, and we will see if it ramps back up after the announcement.

From the X.1 announcement through the submission deadline of the first workout, things really start heating up. Here are the last two seasons in that window:

I believe the 2024 Open will follow a similar trajectory through the submission deadline this Monday. I have held back doing this because it was a bit too early to call and this week was going to be very telling of if the momentum continued.

Prediction: Based on tracking this daily and comparing year over year, my estimates are somewhere in line with 2019’s total of 357,000 but still far below the record year in 2018 of 416,000. This would put CrossFit just above what I presume to be HQ’s goal of growing by 10% year-over-year, or just over 355,000. 

Another year of 10% growth, but that could be wishful thinking. 

In 2022 and 2023, an average of roughly 78,000 athletes were added from Day +1 to Day -5. That would put 2024 at around 326,000. That’s only 1.25% growth over 2023. Registrations could use one big and final push. It could come down to the 24.1 workout itself, which Dave Castro has stated will be something anyone could do in an affiliate or in their garage. That could be good for the numbers versus a complex chipper workout like 23.1.

We will all see soon enough if the barometer I talked about in the first week of the Open Report has sunny skies or storm clouds. 

I am sure CrossFit wants to set the tone with a win here after a season marked by affiliate fee increases, multiple layoffs, elite athletes dropping out, programming issues, and judging issues.

This is, after all, the first anniversary of the 23.1 announcement having the wrong barbell weight for Laura Horvath and Gabi Migała. However, it’s a new chapter, one where Dave Castro is back to doing the announcements and in charge of the Sport of CrossFit. 

[Related: 9 Tips To Be a Low-Maintenance Crossfit Open Participant This Year]

I am still feeling optimistic that things are looking good for CrossFit and Castro’s Games team by Monday evening. But who gets the credit? 

I am sure multiple people will come out of the woodwork to take credit for the new growth of registrations. I say whoever is trying to take credit, let them have it. As long as it means more people testing their fitness against their community which leads to more people around the world training under certified CrossFit coaches, doing the CrossFit methodology, we all win. It’s good for CrossFit HQ and for affiliates.

The bottom line: “A rising tide lifts all boats” — John F. Kennedy (attributed)

We are keeping this week a bit shorter, but I am not done with the series. Over the next few weeks, we finally get to react to the number totals and check back in on the unaffiliated, the Service Open, age groups, the 25% QF Cutline, and other topics.

Here are the penultimate numbers (before the ones that ultimately prove me right or wrong)……

Week 6 of Open registration tracking:

Reminder: Dates and info for the 2024 Open:

Registration started on January 9 at noon PT

Open Workout 24.1 starts on February 29 at noon PT

Open Workout 24.3 ends on March 18 at 5 p.m. PT

That gives us a window of 52 total days for registration before the first workout. Plus, there are 19 days between workouts 24.1 and 24.3.

(Editor’s Note: All data within this report for the 2024 CrossFit Open was pulled from the CrossFit leaderboard on Wednesday, February 28 at 1 p.m. EST.)

We are now 52 days into the registration window and 0 days until the Open begins.

The current 2024 registration total is growing at an average rate of around 4,625 each day after the initial day-one total of 20,982. Compared to previous years:

Past 7-Day Comparison Year-Over-Year

Note: The 2023 Open registration started on November 17, 2022, with an incentive from NOBULL to register before December 31. In 2022, Open registration started on January 13, similar to 2024. In 2023, the Open started on February 16.

[Related: ROKA Partners With CrossFit Games, Adds Tia-Clair Toomey-Orr to Athlete Roster]

Numbers, numbers, numbers!: Additional data I’ve been tracking along with a few suggestions from readers and commentators on Instagram.

2024 Open Division – Registration by Region and Division, then 10% cut and 25% cut



Top 15 Countries by Athlete Nationality

Total Affiliate Count 2018-2024

*Note: For these two years, the count of registrations for each affiliate is blank, so it’s not possible to see if affiliates may have been listed with zero registrations, which does show up on ‘22-’24.

Top 10 Affiliates Registered for 2024

*Note: SuperForce CrossFit appears to be a 16-location franchise across different areas of Brazil. It appears that they are submitting all registrations under a single affiliate on the leaderboard. 

Top 10 Ages of Registered Athletes

Registrations by Age Group Divisions

More CrossFit Content

Read the latest CrossFit stories from the Morning Chalk Up below:

Interview: Haley Adams on Finding the Joy In CrossFit Again After Her Year Away

Meet Dylan Gibbs: The First U.S. Male Collegiate Functional Fitness National Champion

Breaking Down the Most Common CrossFit Open Movement Combinations

Featured Image: @crossfitcentralhouston / Instagram

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