Although CrossFit was created in the late 1990s by gymnast Greg Glassman, it didn’t gain tractions until the late 2000s. Now, there are many competitions in CrossFit—some are local, some regional, some are fundraisers.

But, the biggest and best known are the CrossFit Games. Started in 2007, the CrossFit Games allow all CrossFit athletes all over the globe to compete. The first level is the Opens, which anyone can compete in to try and qualify. These are held over five weeks in February and March. Athletes participate in released workouts and submit their score online with a video or CrossFit affiliate validation.

Then come Regionals, which is organized into 17 primarily geographical training locations. After all five Open workouts, the top 30 (or fewer) athletes advance to Regionals. These events last about three days over a few weekends, and all workouts are the same for all regions. The top five from each Region qualify for the Games, which are held over three days in July or August. Besides a winner’s purse, there is the opportunity to win sponsorships and affiliates. Individuals can compete or participate in teams.

Many CrossFit athletes today are very competitive and push to their limits. CrossFit is life for them.

We've decided to create an all-inclusive list of the winners of the coveted CrossFit Games winners from 2007 to 2016. 

2016 CrossFit Games Winners

Male: Matthew Fraser

Matthew Fraser
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Fraser had been participating in the Games for years and kept inching toward his goal of taking home the title of Fittest Man on Earth. In 2016, he finally did. Before getting into CrossFit, Fraser was a member of the U.S. Olympic Weightlifting team until he had a major back surgery. He has come in 2nd both in 2014 and 2015, 1st in the East Regionals from 2014-2017, and has taken 1st place in the 2015 and 2016 Opens.

Female: Katrín Tanja Davíðsdóttir

Katrín Tanja Davíðsdóttir
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Davidsdottir is a native of Reykjavik, Iceland, and a former gymnast and track athlete. She has done what only two other athletes have ever done in the CrossFit Games—won twice. She took home the title of Fittest Woman on Earth in both 2015 and 2016 after disappointingly missing qualifying in 2014. Davidsdotter said, “I've been working so much on my mental approach and just staying in that mental mind game, staying focused on yourself, and only the next task at hand.” She won the East Regionals in 2016.

2015 CrossFit Games Winners

Male: Ben Smith

Ben Smith
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 A Virginian native, Ben Smith, has participated in the CrossFit Games for many years—since 2009! Although he only won Fittest Man on Earth once (in 2015), he won 1st in the Mid-Atlantic Regionals six times (2009, 2011-2014, 2016). Fraser is currently the lead programmer, co-owner, founder, and coach at CrossFit Krypton in Chesapeake, Virginia.

Female: Katrín Tanja Davíðsdóttir

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2015 is a memorable year for women CrossFitters. Katrín Tanja Davíðsdóttir began her run as reigning champion.

2014 CrossFit Games Winners

Male: Rich Froning Jr.

Rich Froning Jr
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One of the most well-known CrossFitters, Rich Froning, holds the title of the most championships. The Fittest Man on Earth from 2011-2014, Froning is easily recognized by his large tattoo of Galatians 6:14 from his left armpit to his hip. He's also taken first for the Central East and Central regions every year from 2010-2017 except for 2011. Froning also took first in the Opens from 2012-2014.

Female: Camille Leblanc-Bazinet

Camille Leblanc-Bazinet
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Currently a member of the CrossFit Level 1 Seminar Staff, Bazinet began her athletic career as a gymnast. However, after doing gymnastics for fourteen years, she stopped after tearing her hip. Then, Bazinet participated in soccer, volleyball, marathon running, skiing, and other sports after recovering. Initially, her parents were against her competing in CrossFit, fearing it was too dangerous. But, she persevered and became Fittest Woman on Earth in 2014 and winning first in Regionals (Canada East and South) 2011 and 2013-2016.

2013 CrossFit Games Winners

Male: Rich Froning Jr.

Rich Froning Jr. Image Source

2013 marks the third consecutive year for Rich Froning, Jr. The male races have heated up, and die hard CrossFitters have set their sights on outdoing Froning.

Female: Samantha Briggs

Samantha Briggs
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The Strongest Woman on Earth for 2013, Samantha Briggs had the nickname, "The Engine." She has also placed first in the European Regionals in 2013 and was an online qualifier in 2017. She also took first in the Open 2013, 2014, and 2017. Before becoming a CrossFit athlete, Briggs worked as a Manchester City firefighter and participated in duathlons, triathlons, and football.

2012 CrossFit Games Winners

Male: Rich Froning Jr.

Back to back champions in this year makes it one to remember, and also one to motivate others.

Female: Anníe Mist Þórisdóttir

Anníe Mist Þórisdóttir
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Known as "Iceland Annie," Thorisdottir has never finished below the top thirteen in the seven years she has participated in the CrossFit Games, except in 2015 when she was forced to withdraw due to heatstroke. From 2010-2014, she placed first in the European Regionals. In 2011 and 2015, she placed first in the Open. She is the co-owner of CrossFit Reykjavik. Thorisdottir has also beaten NFL running back Justin Forsett in a push-up contest while she was recovering from a back injury.

2011 CrossFit Games Winners

Male: Rich Froning Jr.

This year marked the beginning in the repeat champions in both male and female category. 2011 was a true testament to CrossFit dedication.

Female: Anníe Mist Þórisdóttir

2010 CrossFit Games Winners

Male: Graham Holmberg

Graham Holmberg
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In college, Holmberg played football and baseball at Capital University. When he got into CrossFit, he finished in the Top 25 of each of the six CrossFit Games he participated in. In 2010, Holmberg was the CrossFit Games Champion. Holmberg is an inspirational story—during college, he drank alcohol and chewed tobacco all the time. Once he turned to CrossFit with a college friend, his life was turned around.

Female: Kristan Clever

Kristan Clever
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A small woman, Clever is a powerhouse when it comes to CrossFit. She won the CrossFit Games in 2010, becoming the Fittest Woman on Earth. In 2013, she refused to quit the games even though she was suffering a major injury in her shoulder. For that, she won the “Spirit of the Games” in 2013. Clever is a certified CrossFit Trainer and a Coach at VCF Training Camp.

2009 CrossFit Games Winners

Male: Mikko Salo

Mikko Salo
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Salo became the champion of the 2009 Games and gained the title the Fittest Man on Earth. In his home country of Finland, Salo is a firefighter by day and a CrossFit trainer at night. Although he has only competed in the games three times (2009, 2010-5th place, 2013-2nd place European regionals), he has helped coach others and led them to the games. Salo has also designed The System training template.

Female: Tanya Wagner

Tanya WagnerImage Source

Tanya Wagner won the 2009 Games and is currently the co-owner of CrossFit Apex. According to Wagner, her job as a mother comes first. Rather than be a gym rat, she would only hit WODs two or three times a week rather than multiple days. But, she is a testament to moderation—Wagner balances her love for her family and her passion for CrossFit and is still able to be successful in both.

2008 CrossFit Games Winners

Male: Jason Khalipa

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One of the early CrossFit Games winners, Jason Khalipa, is now a CrossFit coach, ambassador, and box owner. He runs NorCal CrossFit and helps administrate other facilities on the west coast. In 2009, he won the “Spirit of the Games” award. From 2011-2014, Khalipa placed first place in the Nor Cal Regionals. Khalipa is known for his family—he loves his wife and two kids. He is able to balance family, CrossFit, and entrepreneurship.

Female: Caity Matter

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Before Matter became the 2008 CrossFit Games Champion in 2008, she was already a successful athlete. After graduating from Ohio State University, Matter joined the WNBA for two years. She joined her husband, Bill Henniger, in growing Rogue Fitness, and after three months of doing CrossFit, Bill signed her up for the Games. And, the rest is history. She doesn't let CrossFit take over her life, but she is still very passionate about it, competing with others, and continuing to help Rogue Fitness grow.

2007 CrossFit Games Winners

Male: James Fitzgerald

James Fitzgerald Image Source

The first to win the CrossFit Games and claim the title of Fittest Man on Earth, James Fitzgerald is all about CrossFit. He is the owner and head coach of Optimum Performance Training, Inc. As a young adult, he played national level soccer in high school and collegiate basketball and junior hockey in college. He gained a Bachelor Degree in Physical Education and minored in Biology. Fitzgerald prides himself in being with CrossFit before it became popular and can see himself staying with CrossFit long into the future.

Female: Jolie Gentry

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The first woman to win the first CrossFit Games was Jolie Gentry. She is currently a Level 2 CrossFit Trainer at CrossFit One World. She also works as a police detective. She became her department’s first female Special Weapon and Tactics team operator. Gentry feels strongly about empowering women physically and wants her daughters to know they can do hard things.

For the 2017 season, Regionals have just finished. You can check the scores and statistics of the current athletes at the CrossFit Games website. And, you can follow these Champions, as well as many other top CrossFit athletes on their Instagram pagesto stay up to date.

Anne Ramos
Anne Ramos


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