Fifty-seven athletes from the
UK took part in the 2016 CrossFit Games Open’s divisions for female teenagers, up from 38 in 2015.
As in the previous year, 14-15 year-olds slightly outnumbered the older category, but it’s good to see numbers are rising for both, and they will continue to rise so long as CrossFit boxes are encouraging girls to step inside and get involved in the sport from an early age.
With 22 athletes returning to the Open for a second year, many competitors had an opportunity to show impressive progress. Chief among them, Jennifer Banks, of CrossFit Wyre Forest, who won the 16-17 age category with a strong Rx performance. In 2015 Banks scaled the week 3 workout , with a muscle up buy-in, wall-balls and double-unders. This year, despite the open featuring muscle ups, hand-stand push ups and chest-to-bar pull-ups, all things your average adult would not be ashamed to scale, Jennifer Banks, and four other competitors in her age group completed the open Rx.
The other competitors to Rx the Open in the 16-17 age group had all aged up, having completed scaled workouts in the 14-15 age category the previous year. Each athlete was able to put in a performance in at least one week of the open that saw her achieve a result in the top 500 of all women in the UK.
Jennifer Bank’s performance is impressive, overall, her Rx versions of the workouts, if matched up against the senior women, would have secured her 284th place in the overall UK open. Given another year, and we will be seeing her up near the top of the UK leader boards in the senior women. Just like her predecessor, Elle Clemens, who finished 105th in the Open among senior women, having won the 16-17 age group in 2015, with an Rx’d performance that would have got her 188th position that year, an improvement of 83 places in a year of training.
Great performances from the female youths offer great promise for the future of UK athletes in the CrossFit Games.