Our “7 Questions Leading Up to the 2024 CrossFit Open,” Answered

In early February, we laid out seven questions we had heading into the 2024 CrossFit Open. With the Open now officially in the rearview mirror, we can take a look back and answer them.

1. Was This the Biggest CrossFit Open Yet? 

No. But while 2024 comes in fourth all-time for total registrations, the final number represents a 6 percent year-over-year increase.

The 2018 Open still holds the all-time title with 416,000 registered athletes. However, since the major drop-off of 2020, we have seen a healthy increase each year, with registrations surpassing 2023 by 20,514. Here are the top years by the numbers:

2018: 416,000

2017: 380,000

2019: 357,000

2024: 343,528

2. Did We See Any New Movements? 

Yes. Kind of. 

We have seen at least one new movement every year. (The shoulder-to-overhead in 2013 is debatable as new since we previously saw the push press). But while we did not see a completely new movement like crossovers or pull-overs that some were expecting, we saw a new way of doing burpees — jumping laterally over a dumbbell. 

[Related: New Documentary, Danielle Brandon Energy, Highlights Softer Side of the Fierce CrossFit Games Veteran]

3. Did We See a Repeat? 

No. For only the second time in the history of the Open, we did not see a workout from the past. Both times have occurred since the move to the three-week format in 2021. 

The longest period between a workout and its repeat has been nine years (from 14.4 to 23.1).

4. Was There a Max Lift? 


We have seen a pure strength test just four times, but twice in the three-week Open era:

15.1a: One-rep-max clean and jerk

18.2a: One-rep-max clean. 

21.4: One-rep-max complex of a deadlift, clean, hang clean, and jerk. 

23.2b: One-rep-max thruster.

5. Does Winning the Open Predict Success at the Games? 

Time will tell how our winners will fare at the Games this year. What we do know is that winning the Open has all but guaranteed a spot at the Games in the past. 

Only three Open winners didn’t compete at the Games as an individual; all on the women’s side. Sam Briggs missed qualifying by one spot in the 2014 Europe Regional, Jamie Greene competed on a team in 2016, and Mal O’Brien withdrew for personal reasons in 2023.

The winner of the Open has won the Games seven times on the men’s side: three times each by Rich Froning and Mat Fraser, and then once by Jeffrey Adler in 2023. 

The winner of the Open has won the Games three times on the women’s side: Annie Thorisdottir in 2011, Sam Briggs in 2013, and Tia-Clair Toomey-Orr in 2021.

6. What Combinations of Movements Did We Get? 

We received a dose of freshness and a dose of predictability with this year’s programming. 

We continue to see double-unders every single year, and it was the tenth time we’ve seen deadlifts. Surprisingly, this is the first time we’ve seen these two movements together.

For only the second time, the rower was not paired with either ring muscle-ups or wall balls. It was, however, the first time it had been with double-unders. 

We saw the common combo of thrusters and chest-to-bar pull-ups for the eighth time in the 14-year history of the Open, with all eight times landing in the final workout. 

This was the fourth time (ever) we’ve had burpees and dumbbell snatches together and the third time since 2021. 

[Related: CrossFit Open 24.3 Livestream Concurrent Viewership Slides; 24-Hour Total Views Reach New High]

Since moving from five weeks to three weeks, the average number of movements per Open is 10.75. With only eight movements this year, it was the lowest number ever. 

7. Was the Programming Different Based on the Increased Number of Athletes Who Qualify for Quarterfinals? 

The Open is meant to be highly accessible and a celebration of community and fitness, which it was. With relatively lighter weights, the fewest movements programmed, and only one high-level gymnastics skill tested (bar muscle-ups), one could say, yes, the programming was different than years past, when only 10 percent qualified for the next stage. 

We can expect to see a big shift in programming during the Quarterfinals. With substantially more people qualifying from the Open, the programming will need to challenge the best in the world yet allow the vast majority to participate. At this point, we will surely encounter heavy weights and more high-skill movements, slimming down the field further for the Semifinals.

Featured image: @crossfit9stpete / Instagram  

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