It’s one of the fastest growing sports. And it’s coming to Huddersfield.
Fifty men and 50 women, representing some of the fittest people in the country, will take part in a crossfit competition at Huddersfield Leisure Centre on Sunday.
The sport is a hybrid of different forms of fitness including gymnastics, weight-lifting, power-lifting and monostructural exercises to provide high intensity tests of functional fitness.
The Battle for Middle Ground has been organised by John Priest, 35, and Richard Hornsey, 34, both of Halifax, who expect upwards of 500 spectators and vendors on the day. Competitors are travelling from Ireland, Scotland and as far south as Portsmouth.
Launched in January this year the event saw potential competitors taking part in qualifiers in April. Each person completed three qualifiers in their own gym and submitted a video of the results to be judged by John and Richard. The top 50 in each sex were accepted into Sunday’s finals.
Among those set to compete is 33-year-old graphic designer Sharon Lloyd, from Mirfield, who trains at Extreme Conditioning on Red Doles Lane in Huddersfield.
“Crossfit is a good combination of gymnastics, strength and stamina. It lets you see how far you can push yourself.
“I’ve always loved sport and I’ve done the work for it. It’s only in the last few months that we’ve pushed each other to compete. It makes the atmosphere better. I did my first competition last week in Sunderland and came 17th out of 50 but that included swimming and I haven’t really swum since I was at school.
“Just doing the qualifiers gives you that bit more of a buzz. On the day I’ll do five 10-minute workouts at very high intensity. I’ve worked my backside off so I want to see how much further I can push myself.”
Co-organiser John, who works in bar management, and Richard, a former soldier in the Royal Engineers who now runs a crossfit gym in Sowerby Bridge, said they had been surprised by the distances people had been prepared to travel in order to take part.
“This is a first-time competition,” said John. “But crossfit is a very popular sport. People are travelling a long way. Some are staying overnight. That’s a big commitment.”
He added: “You don’t need to be fit to start crossfit. In fact we will be holding spectator challenges on the day with money raised going to MacMillan.”
for more see www.facebook.com/battleformiddleground/