Latest News

Back to Latest News back

 

Koreans love CrossFit

Koreans love CrossFit
September 20, 2013

Introduced to Korea in 2006, after a slow start compared to its massive international growth, CrossFit gyms and memberships are growing exponentially.

Rather than the standard rows of treadmills, elliptical machines and weights, CrossFit gyms feature an open, wide space for team-based exercises that are focused on varied, high-intensity and functional movements.

As Reebok CrossFit Sentinel gym Chief Executive Cody Hunter explains "most people who get the opportunity to try something new like CrossFit will leave the traditional gym, even if it's twice the price because the amount of value you get from being around people who want the same things as you do is priceless."

Established in the USA in 2000, CrossFit founder Greg Glassman created an exercise program that includes movements such as sprinting, rowing, jumping rope, climbing rope, flipping tires, weightlifting, and many bodyweight exercises.

Over 4,000 gyms in the USA use CrossFit programming, as do fire departments, law enforcement agencies and military organisations.

Hunter continues "the reason for its quick growth is because we're doing it to change lives.

"We do it to make people better, healthier, and we do it a really different way, so people enjoy our product."

According to Hunter, the reason more and more people are trying CrossFit is because jumping on a treadmill for 20 minutes while listening to music is an outdated and ineffective way to exercise. People need accountability and a group of people to encourage them, which is why community is such an important concept in CrossFit gyms.

Reebok CrossFit Sentinel, which was one of the first CrossFit gyms to open in Seoul, features two types of classes: CrossFit and Bootcamp. Unlimited membership costs 260,000 won (US$234) per month or 2.49 million won for 12 months. Each class has two coaches and no more than 15 to 20 people.

Typically, the class will go through a warm-up, a skill development segment, the high-intensity workout of the day, and a period of individual or group stretching. If members haven't been showing up to class, coaches will give them a call to check on them.

When CrossFit first came to Seoul, it was mostly popular among expatriates in the South Korean capital. However, over the last couple of years, more and more Korean natives have enrolled, causing a major spike in CrossFit memberships.

In fact, Reebok CrossFit Sentinel's newest location in downtown, has 300 memberships with the majority of them being Korean businessmen and women.

Hunter adds "at first, I think Koreans were weirded out by the high-fives and team dynamics because the businessmen are professional and not necessarily used to it.

"They might be a CEO of a company, who's standing next to their junior, so it can be a little different for them. But once you loosen them up, they love it."

While the traditional gyms are known for advertising impossible six-pack abs and bulging biceps, CrossFit swears that those results are guaranteed as long as participants eat well and consistently do the workouts.

Despite its ever-increasing popularity, Hunter believes that a lot can still be done, adding "you think about Seoul, with over 20 million people, and there's maybe 20 official gyms, so in terms of scale, there's so much more room to grow."

Brett Roberts, from Prince Edward Island, Canada, runs CrossFit Kids, an after-school program to teach students about fitness and nutrition, in Seoul.

A typical class, which lasts between 45 minutes to an hour, consists of a warm-up activity, a lesson on nutrition, and a skill-based exercise like handstands or wheelbarrow walks.

Roberts explains "kids learn early on that sports are good for you, but once they finish high school, they need to understand that exercise is something they need to do for the rest of their life.

"In Korea, appearance is important, but it's done in the wrong way. It's about looking skinny, but not necessarily being healthy.

"So we want to take that and educate them on how it's ok to want to look good, but it's far more important to be healthy, not just skinny."

For more information go to www.reebokcrossfitsentinel.com/

12th September 2013 - KOREAN GOVERNMENT REVEALS PLANS TO ADD 40,000 SPORT INDUSTRY JOBS 

17th October 2012 - IHRSA TO PRESENT CHINAFIT, CHINA MANAGEMENT FORUM IN SHANGHAI

12th September 2012 - ASIA FITNESS CONVENTION 2012 TO INSPIRE ‘TRANSFORMATION’ 

2nd September 2011 - GLOBAL GOVERNMENTS MUST ‘GET TOUGH ON OBESITY’

15th January 2010 - LES MILLS RELEASES ‘FUTURE OF FITNESS’ RESEARCH


Asking a small favour
We hope that you value the news that we publish so while you're here can we ask for your support?

The news we publish at www.ausleisure.com.au is independent, credible (we hope) and free for you to access, with no pay walls and no annoying pop-up ads.

However, as an independent publisher, can we ask for you to support us by subscribing to the printed Australasian Leisure Management magazine - if you don't already do so.

Published bi-monthly since 1997, the printed Australasian Leisure Management differs from this website in that it publishes longer, in-depth and analytical features covering aquatics, attractions, entertainment, events, fitness, parks, recreation, sport, tourism and venues management.

Subscriptions cost just $90 a year.

Click here to subscribe.

 

supplier directory

The Complete Guide to Leisure Industry Products & Services.

See the directory see all

INTELLIGENZ

Recreation Management Software for managing all your program registrations, facility bookings, membership pass sales and Point of Sale; including detailed reporting, automated customer communication…

read more

Access / Billing / Finance / Marketing / Technology

 
 

Summit Fitness

Summit Fitness Equipment is now part of NovoFit - see www.ausleisure.com.au/suppliers/novofit/

read more

Fitness / Recreation / Technology / Wellness

 
 

GUNNEBO

Gunnebo is a global provider of security and access control solutions and services with sales companies in 31 countries in Europe, the Middle East, Africa, Asia, the Americas and Australia.…

read more

Attractions / Entertainment / Security / Ticketing / Venues

 
 

SICO SOUTH PACIFIC

SICO is at the forefront in innovative mobile folding and rolling, space efficient tables, stages, dance floors and many other products which help our customers optimise their use of space. Image…

read more

Entertainment / Events / Venues

 
 

AIS Water

AIS Water, the trading name of Australian Innovative Systems, is a multi-award winning, Australian owned leader in the design, production and supply of commercial and residential chlorine generators…

read more

Aquatics / Safety / Technology

 
 

Digonex

Digonex is a leading provider of customised dynamic pricing solutions to clients in arts and entertainment, sport, attractions, cultural institutions and retail sectors. Digonex’s technology is…

read more

Attractions / Entertainment / Sport / Technology / Ticketing

 
 

SKC Operations Pty Ltd (SKCorp)

SKC Operations Pty Ltd (SKCorp) is an expert retail and marketing services team specialising in sports, leisure, aquatics, fitness, health, wellness & recreation industry. Using proven…

read more

Aquatics / Consultants / Fitness / Marketing / Retail

 
 

NOVOFIT

NovoFit is an exciting and dynamic new company born from two of Australia’s leading commercial fitness equipment suppliers. NovoFit combines over 45 years of industry expertise, delivering state…

read more

Fitness / Recreation / Sport / Technology / Wellness

 
 
 
 

get listed with our suppliers directory

Get your business noticed in our targeted directory. Viewed by 10,000 industry professionals per week!

list your business