Why Bodybuilders Hate CrossFit

Moving from Bodybuilding into CrossFit was a difficult change for me mentally.  Mainly because of the amount of hate I was getting from my friends who were all bodybuilders.  Not professional bodybuilders, just everyday gym goers working on their pump and physique.  They hated everything about CrossFit.  At first I didn’t understand why.  I wasn’t constantly talking about it like all the Fight Club memes all over the internet and I wasn’t constantly posting on social media.  I tend to keep my private life to myself so that just isn’t me.  I was hit at least once a day with all the typical CrossFit put downs:

  • Kipping pull-ups aren’t real pull-ups.
  • Coaches take a weekend course to get certified.
  • Olympic lifts aren’t meant to be done for time.
  • They don’t teach form.
  • You’re going to get hurt.
  • You’re going to get Rhabdo.

Those are just a few.  Yes, there are bad CrossFit gyms out there and bad CrossFit coaches but those are few and far between.  The same can be said about any sport.  This topic has been argued time and time again so I’m not going get into the “Why” all those put downs are inaccurate.

Once I stepped back and looked at the CrossFit vs Bodybuilding argument as a whole, I realized the real reason Bodybuilders hate CrossFit.  Its the popularity of CrossFit that threatens the bodybuilding world.  Before CrossFit, bodybuilding was the mainstream fitness program used to build muscle and burn fat.  That no longer is the case.  CrossFit has gone mainstream and has taken the fitness industry by storm.  The sport of CrossFit has grown tremendously and you can see that every year with the amount of newcomers at the CrossFit Games.  There are CrossFit boxes popping up everywhere you look.  This is a serious threat to bodybuilders.  People are becoming more interested in CrossFit when they watch the CrossFit Games on ESPN or CBS.  Pretty soon CrossFit will be an official Olympic sport thanks to the efforts of the International Functional Fitness Federation (iF3).

Let’s face it, popularity is growing because “CrossFit is cool”.  The feeling you get from CrossFit is something I never experienced in bodybuilding.  Don’t get me wrong, I still enjoy bodybuilding and enjoy feeling the pump after an intense training session but the adrenaline rush from competing in CrossFit is something I never experienced in bodybuilding.  It just doesn’t compare.  The nerves before a hard wod, the adrenaline rush from competing and the feeling of satisfaction from getting your first pull-up, muscle up or rope climb is like none other.  Once people get a taste of that there’s no turning back.  This is what makes people talk about it so much which tends to irk bodybuilders and non-crossfitters in general.

CrossFit is here to stay and should be embraced.  I understand that it isn’t for everybody but that can also be said about bodybuilding.  For those that still hate it, I challenge you to give it a try.  I’m sure you’ll find a newfound respect for it once you experience the intensity of the workouts.  Trust me, I was once like you.

Josh Ortiz

I've been an athlete since I started playing baseball at the age of 7 up until the end my collegiate wrestling career. As a bodybuilder looking to supplement my training I stumbled into a Crossfit gym and was immediately hooked. Although I still enjoy bodybuilding I find my passion has shifted to being a competitive crossfitter. My articles will take you through my journey into Crossfit. Enjoy!

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