Crossfit History

What is the history of Crossfit? What are its origins? Where did Crossfit come from? Who invented it? Here is the history of Crossfit.

Which Country Started Crossfit?

Crossfit was started in the United States of America. The first official gym was built in Santa Cruz, California.

Who Invented Crossfit?

Greg Glassman invented crossfit. Growing up, he was a gymnast, and gymnasts usually just do bodyweight exercises but he realized that he could develop more strength if he worked out with dumbbells and barbells. He also used cycling as another outlet for his athleticism. He took this multidisciplinary approach when he began training other people.

He opened a gym in Santa Cruz, California and was hired to train the local police department. He realized that he could not train clients one on one anymore because of the volume of people being booked, so he turned to group training and incorporated his multidisciplinary approach to fitness.  

When was Crossfit Established?

Crossfit was established in 2000 when Greg Glassman opened the first gym in Santa Cruz, California. The sport continued to grow with its first affiliate being in Seattle. In 2005 that number grew to 13, and in 2012 there were 3,400 affiliates all across the world.

The Crossfit Games were first established in 2007. The first competition was held on a ranch in Northern California. About 70 athletes competed in workouts that were created on the spot. Glassman truly believed that the best athletes would be able to handle any situation they were thrown into. Glassman made the athletes do a 1,000 meter row followed by five rounds of 25 pull ups and 7 overhead push jerks. 

In his gymnastic days, Glassman had to compete for style points in order to win. However, in his new sport of crossfit, the winner was determined by the clock. The person who worked harder than anyone else would ultimately win the competition.

The 2007 games were won by California’s Jolie Gentry and Canada’s James FitzGerald.

Crossfit started gaining popularity after the first competition in 2007. Just three years later, Crossfit partnered with Reebok to grow the popularity of the sport. The popularity increase can also be seen with the amount of prize money that has been given out to winners over the years. In 2007, the first place prize was $500. This year, the winner in the male and female divisions both took home $300,000. The sport continues to grow in  popularity as many people realize the benefits of not only exercising, but exercising in a way that promotes functional movements.

Crossfit History Key Facts and Timeline

Crossfit is a sport that started with humble beginnings. In 1995, Greg Glassman opened his first gym and in that same year he began to train the Santa Cruz Police Department. He later figured out that incorporating different components of fitness such as strength, endurance, flexibility, balance, and power would help people get in better shape, so in 2000 he opened his first crossfit gym.

Within seven years, the first Crossfit Games were established in Northern California and this would change the sport forever. People’s stamina and strength were put to the test in this competition, and the winner came out with only $500.

However, just three years after that, Crossfit would partner with Reebok in what would be the new Reebok Crossfit Games. The prize money was significantly raised, and competitions were held in the public eye and showed on national television.

Today, the sport continues to grow and more people are incorporating it into their lives so they can work out more functionally.


  • Greg Glassman is the founder of crossfit
  • The sport was established in 2000, but the first games were in 2007
  • There are over 7,000 gyms in the United States alone
  • To participate in the sport, you can go to a local gym to learn the basics
  • If you want to get into the Games, you must either participate in the Open or Sanctional workouts