Hyrox the next big thing

SPORTING CHANCE - Joaquin Henson - The Philippine Star

LONDON - Theres a new sport thats taking fitness capitals all over the world by storm. Its called Hyrox and founder Christian Toetzke, who conceptualized the sport in Germany in 2017, said his idea was to stage a competition where the magic format is inclusivity.

Writer William Hosie, in a recent article published in the UK newspaper Evening Standard, cited London as the worlds Hyrox capital. “One in five Londoners is a member of a gym and we are, for want of a better word, obsessed with fitness,” wrote Hosie. “More so than a competition against others, this one is against ourselves. The goal is to perfect the one routine through practice, patience and discipline.” Hosie noted that 14 London gyms are now offering Hyrox classes and tickets to join events sell out in minutes.

The competition is an alternating challenge of running eight one-kilometer runs with eight different workouts. Divisions are individuals, pairs and four-strong relay teams that run two kilometers each and doing workouts after every lap. The eight workouts are SkiErg (using a cross-country skiing simulator machine), Sled Push (pushing a sled with weights across an obstructive surface), Sled Pull, Burpee Broad Jumps, Rowing, Farmers Carry (holding two kettlebells over a 200 meter distance), Sandbag Lunges (lunging forward to 100 meters with a sandbag strapped on the back) and Wall Balls (squatting before striking a target with a 4.9 kilogram ball).

Last year, the Hyrox competition drew 7,500 participants with 6,200 spectators in London. The next event is on May 4 and 12,500 competitors are expected and plans are being laid out to welcome 12,500 spectators. The world championships will be held in Nice, France, on Oct. 12. The competition is open to fitness buffs of all ages and last year, the London conclave brought in 274 in the over-60 bracket from only seven previously. “Running Hyrox now is going to get me to stand up out of my sofa and climb out of the bath, hopefully well into my 80s and 90s,” said 2023 winner of women in the 60-69 year class Celia Duff. The world Hyrox record holder is Hunter McIntyre who clocked 53:22 in a Stockholm race last December.

Toetzke said he coined the wordHyroxfrom the wordshybrid(combining running and workouts) androck star.” Hosie said, “forget yoga or meditation, for London, Hyrox is where its at.”

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