Crossfit Opens: A fitness family

By Elizabeth Ah-Hi ,

9828 Hits

The Crossfit movement continues to grow in popularity in Samoa.

And with the 2018 Crossfit Games kicking off on Friday, a strong crew from Samoa has signed up, ready to take on the first five weeks of grueling workouts of the day (W.O.D) to the test their fitness against thousands of other Crossfitters from across the globe.

Close to 50 participants from Samoa are taking part in the Games. 

During the Open, athletes train to beat their personal best and see how they fare against their counterparts in the worldwide competition.

Among the team from Samoa is Rosa Siliva. She has been doing Crossfit for three years now and has entered the Crossfit Opens every year since she started.

Coming from a bodybuilding background, she was used to doing intensive training but found that Crossfit was the right fit for her in the end.

“I’ve always done a similar type of training to Crossfit,” she said.

“My previous training was bodybuilding so we had a different diet. I lost weight from doing bodybuilding but I found that I wasn’t enjoying it anymore so I joined Crossfit. And I actually gained weight while doing Crossfit but I was much fitter and stronger than I was before and I had more energy.”

Training at Fatutoa Crossfit Gym at Vaitele is not just about fitness for Rosa. It’s also about community and having an international network of Crossfit enthusiasts competing together feels empowering to her.

“I feel empowered that there are people out there that don’t care where you come from, don’t care how much money you have in the bank, they just care about being healthy,” she said.

“I enjoy Crossfit because of the community and just knowing that we are suffering all together,” she laughs. 

TACKLING 18.1: Brandon Sefo and Xavier Martel during the Opens 18.1 W.O.D. They are being judged by Dean Sefo and AJ Cowley. Photo: Misiona Simo.
TACKLING 18.1: Brandon Sefo and Xavier Martel during the Opens 18.1 W.O.D. They are being judged by Dean Sefo and AJ Cowley. Photo: Misiona Simo.

“We are going through the challenges together and you come out on top together. I know it sounds so cliché but if you approach life in the same way you approach Crossfit, you will be successful in whatever you do. Workouts may not be your thing but give it a go.”

Coach and Co-Founder of Fatutoa, Brandon Sefo, echoes those sentiments. 

“It’s kind of grown into this big network and also it’s like a big fitness family,” he said. “Where after classes they will stick around, people don’t want to leave, and don’t leave till 8pm in the evening. It’s not just about working out, it’s just people coming together and hanging out as well.

“That’s why we do what we do. We are passionate about helping people realize their potential and they are not limited to what they previously thought. Our participants this year that entered last year are trying to beat their placing from last year.” 

Brandon said it has been very encouraging to see Crossfit grow in Samoa every year.

“For the first year we entered the Opens, I think we had about 15 participants, last year there was 30 registered and this year there’s almost 50 participants so the interest in Samoa in increasing definitely. 

“The awareness of Crossfit across Samoa has increased through word of mouth and social media with people telling their friends and family. It’s a fun environment and everyone trains and does things at their own pace.”

Brandon adds that many people have this idea that you have to be super fit to join Crossfit when it is quite the opposite. There is something for all levels – from the no fitness whatsoever to extremely fit fanatics.

As for the Crossfit Opens, the competition goes for five weeks. Every week there is a certain challenge and competitors are given a set time frame to complete their workout.

The W.O.D. for the first week was doing as many rounds as possible in 20 minutes of 10 toes-to-bar, single arm clean and jerk and 14 calorie rows.

© Samoa Observer 2016

Developed by Samoa Observer in Apia