Months ago we started receiving “Cease & Desist” letters from Reebok CrossFit for using the word “CrossFit” on our website's descriptions, “About Us” pages, etc. We had never used the word “CrossFit” on any of our clothing, except for on Ts we had designed specifically for CrossFit community affiliates who had the right to use the CrossFit Trademark. Regardless of what Reebok thought, it was not our agenda to make sales off of the word “CrossFit.”
At first, we edited our website’s content and tried to make sure people understood we were not selling official CrossFit clothing. Three emails later, and it was clear that Reebok’s CrossFit Legal Team had no interest in letting us tell our story, or the history of the MANIMAL brand, as long as there was any mention of “CrossFit.”
Pissed and a little bit suspicious, we started to ask the other known apparel brands in the CrossFit Community if they were receiving the same letters as well. Turns out, they were. It became very clear, real quick, that Reebok wanted their CrossFit stores and their CrossFit stories right at the top of your search results.
But here’s the deal: our company is made up of CrossFit community members. We’re Level 1 Certified Coaches, Box Owners, and long term athletes who have been involved in CrossFit since 2009. We love what CrossFit has done for people over the years. Hell, we have personally invested years and coached hundreds of people in the sport and still do to this day.
Somewhere along the way, though, Reebok forgot who really built this CrossFit community and made it all about selling out to the masses. I mean, come on, even your grandmother competes in the Games now!
The fact of the matter is, the affiliate owners, coaches, and staff of this CrossFit community were the ones who took the risk, worked their asses off, and provided a home for all of us to learn and excel in one common goal: to become more fit and achieve more in life. Reebok did nothing.
We're tired of it.
Now Reebok CrossFit opens their corporate gyms next door to smaller affiliates and then sends threatening letters to small businesses like us who have supported CrossFit for years. Reebok is playing the community like a pawn.
Reebok’s bad practices are a joke and an embarrassment to the CrossFit community. They upload social media posts that are nothing short of embarrassing and a step back from what CrossFit Coaches have been trying to educate people away from. Reebok’s bad ideas are about "hype" and numbers, not about quality.
Bad move, Reebok.
We decided to send our own message with our Ruck Feebok shirt. With this shirt, we remind Reebok that our community is about supporting our affiliates, our local boxes -- not their sales agenda.
Stop blindly supporting a brand that could care less about where we come from and the journey it took to get here. Ruck Feebok and celebrate your CrossFit community for what it is.