THE LIBERTY BOX LEAGUE
Trap Door Athletics is proud to bring you the Liberty Box League - The nation's first multi-region competition league for CrossFit athletes! The inaugural 5-week season began on Saturday, September 14, 2013, concluding on Saturday, October 12, 2013, and culminates with a championship match on November 2nd. Thirty teams representing fifteen boxes will were divided into three conferences. The top teams from each conference will battle at the League Championships, and ultimately the Liberty Cup and the title of Fittest Team in the League.
Taking a Moment
We wanted to take a moment to address some of the feedback and questions we received on our feedback form as well as update you on a couple of exciting things!
A few have inquired about the resolution to the issue that arose during WOD 4 of the Championship. We are revisiting our Rulebook to update our written protocol for handling judging/scoring issues during matches. We are hoping with this announcement we can leave the issues of the past season in the past, and focus on making the upcoming season the best it can be! Additionally, we have come to a mutually agreed upon resolution with CrossFit Royalty. We recognize the Crossfit Royalty Novice Team as the only team going into the Championship with a perfect season - congratulations and we look forward to working with your athletes again in the spring.
With this thought process in mind, over the next few weeks we will be meeting with box owners to gather feedback and discuss the upcoming spring season and beyond. Email us if you are a box owner that would like to participate in this.
There were a few questions/comments about potential conflicts with the Open and Regionals in the spring. We realize that gyms’ priorities will lie with these events and we have done, and will continue to do, everything we can to structure around them. We hope the Spring Season will be an opportunity for athletes who may not be competing in Regionals to put all of their hard work and training to use in another competitive format!
Ideally, the Spring 2014 LBL Season will commence on the Saturday after the CrossFit Open concludes, but we'll confirm once HQ announces its dates.
We’ve had several inquiries about LBL apparel and have a limited supply remaining here. Jump on it! It will go fast.
We will be sharing some awesome imagery taken throughout the season and at the championship. Stay tuned!
That’s a Wrap
What a memorable weekend of competition. As our first Championship event drew to a close we were all overwhelmed with emotion, pride, and gratitude for every single person who contributed this season. You guys came at it hard - Thank you so much!
First, congratulations to CrossFit 1 Force for their victory in both divisions - a great performance all around! However just as important to us is the congratulations owed to ALL of the athletes who competed on Saturday. Throughout the day we saw amazing displays of effort, heart, teamwork, and sportsmanship, which is exactly what our sport -- and the League -- are all about.
Second, as we debriefed this weekend, there were some issues and scenarios that arose that we needed to address both publicly and otherwise. We don’t have a league without our athletes and participating gyms, and your feedback is critical to our development and success. We thought we would highlight some things we are proud of and feel went well this season, and then address the things we feel didn't go so well and must be improved upon for the success of our league.
Lastly, we would ask each of you to take a few minutes to answer some questions that well help us move forward as we work to make the Spring 2014 Season better.
What we feel we did well:
We set out to create an environment that allowed gyms to bond and grow together. Our goal was to allow athletes to strengthen each other through support and teamwork. We feel successful in that goal.
Beyond strengthening community within individual gyms, we wanted to strengthen the community of our great sport within metro-Philadelphia. We provided the opportunity for people to experience other gym environments, personalities, philosophies, and get a feel for life outside of their own box. We ourselves feel connected to so many more lives within the Philadelphia CrossFit community and we hope you do too. One of our favorite parts of the season was seeing teams hang around after matches getting to know one another.
We feel we’ve successfully created another type of competition for CrossFit athletes, that goes beyond a one day event that is specific to certain types of athletes. It brings more of a “sport” feel that requires more commitment, longevity, planning and most importantly, teamwork.
We believe we’ve planted the seed to begin developing a format of competition that is more of a spectator sport. Ultimately we want to draw the attention of other sports enthusiasts and build a league that spectators will enjoy watching just as much as athletes enjoy competing. This won’t happen overnight, but as we grow and attention increases, our goal is to give back to (read: pay) our athletes for their time, sweat, pain, and hard work.
When planning for the season as a whole, we wanted our workouts to test a wide range of skills and abilities, require strategic thought and planning, be enjoyable to watch, expose weaknesses, test teamwork, and to stand apart from traditional workout formats. There were certainly workouts that needed to be improved upon, and we will continue to refine our design and testing processes to create the best experience possible for our athletes. With that said, and given the restrictions we were working within this first season, we feel successful in accomplishing our main goals with programming.
What we know needs improvement:
This is the hardest truth we have to face because we knew of its importance all season, yet we still came up short. Being a ref is a very tough job and it’s not for everyone. However, we know how important the refs are to the success of a competition, and to the League, and we know we simply must do better. It’s hard to admit when you’ve made a mistake, but we own it because we want you to know how much we care.
What we are doing to fix it - While there will always be ref issues because they are human, we are raising the pay for our refs so that we can target, and compensate appropriately, certain individuals with certain qualifications. We are revamping how we recruit referees and will be requiring a greater time and training commitment from each one. Better training and refined communication are absolutes for the Spring and we’ll continue to look for other ways to improve.
We know our venue was not the most convenient, and we are so thankful to the hundreds of people that came out to the event. What most of you probably do not know is that we didn’t have much of a choice - circumstances beyond our control dictated a change in venue, and Spooky Nook was one of the few appropriate spaces with availability. That being said, we recognized that it was a hassle to get there, and we did our best to make the trip as worthwhile as possible.
What we are doing to fix it - We’ve already begun discussing options for next season with regards to Championship location and hope you’ll trust us in knowing we will always do the best that we can to make it the best event that we can without major inconvenience.
The novice athlete qualification structure was not successful and we feel it will be difficult to maintain a novice division in future seasons.
What we are doing to fix it - We are doing away with the novice division and will be moving towards a 12-member open roster for the Spring Season. WODs will be designed for a range of abilities and will highlight the individuals' strengths and skills in the framework of a team competition. You'll be hearing lots more about this format in the coming weeks.
This is where we are coming from - how are y'all feeling? We want to hear what you have to say! If you participated, coached, spectated, or just followed us and have opinions, we want to know! Please fill out this quick little survey to help us continue to improve YOUR league, next season and beyond.