The 2022 CrossFit Optimistic Open Wrapped

Just like that, the 2022 CrossFit Open is over! Three weeks of competition = three weeks of community fun and Free Beer Fridays. As a gym, our favorite part of the Open each year is watching athletes push themselves to try movements or weights they’ve never done before. First pull-up, first wall walks, some athletes even touched their first 35/50# dumbbell!

As a coach, I thought this year’s Open was especially great because none of the workouts seemed unapproachable compared to previous years. To do well, you needed mastery of movement AND general CrossFit ability (weight, cardio, etc). Three weeks felt just long enough to keep athletes engaged and motivated. Let’s reflect on the Open week by week…


Complete as many rounds as possible in 15 minutes of: 3 wall walks, 12 dumbbell snatches, 15 box jump-overs

What I liked about this workout was how moldable it was for different levels of athlete, to either pace or push yourself. The quantity of box jumps was manageable, dumbbell snatches are a relatively common movement, and the wall walks were just tricky enough that each level of athlete could attack it differently. Newer athletes could stay on pace to finish as many reps as possible, and experienced athletes could maintain a fast pace and test the limits of their cardio. The amount of skill required was just enough that you had to push to get a good score but also hang in for the long time cap.


1-2-3-4-5-6-7-8-9-10-9-8-7-6-5-4-3-2-1 reps for time of deadlifts and bar-facing burpees

These first two workouts were very grunt-style. There was so much hinging in 22.1, that with 22.2 having even more hinge movements, the body was taxed and the weight felt heavy. All in all, this workout was short and fast – leg strength and lungs on burpees was a good combo. It was a deceptive workout, you see the reps and think it’ll be a breeze, then you add it up and see exactly how large the challenge really is. Completing the burpees however you want was great, not as much about movement technicality but about capacity.

Highlight as a coach – watching an athlete complete the workout at Foundations and RX age group level. They did well in both, and it was great to see the level of athleticism achievable. All scaling options were accessible!


21 pull-ups, 42 double-unders, 21 thrusters (weight 1)

18 chest-to-bar pull-ups, 36 double-unders, 18 thrusters (weight 2)

15 bar muscle-ups, 30 double-unders, 15 thrusters (weight 3)

Push and pull, what CrossFit does best. With “soft caps” in ability (what I call it when at athlete gets stuck at a movement they’ve never done before, like a muscle up), you can still get through a good chunk of the workout, even if you can’t do the highest technical movement. Athletes can finish as many rounds or reps until they hit the soft cap, and then have time to challenge themselves to attempt the movement.

What I love about this is it sets the road map for your progression on how to improve your own CrossFit. You can do pulls, but can you do chest to bars? If you can do thrusters at 65#, then the next weight to work on is 75#.

A workout like this also shows a culmination of your fitness journey. Do what you know you can do and then push yourself to do more. When people are so tired but really want it, they will find a way to make it happen. You can also see direct growth year to year – several athletes barely did pull-ups last year and got at least one C2B this year.

The Open Wrapped

This was a good Open season, accessible to all levels of athletes, dialed in on how to scale each group. More so than any other year, this Open was accessible to all. No scaling option felt “too easy.” It asked a good amount of every athlete, and was designed well to show both mastery of higher level athletes and motivation of newer athletes. I’m excited to see next year, and even more excited to see this year’s quarterfinals compared to last year.