How to Increase Gym Member Retention with The CrossFit Open

The CrossFit Open is a great opportunity to increase gym member retention. Here are four tips to consider trying in your gym this Open season!

Ashley Adams
February 20, 2024
How to Increase Gym Member Retention with The CrossFit Open
The CrossFit Open is a great opportunity to increase gym member retention. Here are four tips to consider trying in your gym this Open season!

For many affiliate owners, The CrossFit Open can rattle some nerves. Sure, it shows up each year with the best of intentions. The Open is designed to test fitness and connect your gym community in a fun way. But the mere operation of those three weeks can also feel like a lot of pressure.

As gym owners ourselves, the PushPress team gets it. As we focus on running The Open in our own gyms this year, we set a goal of helping yours go smoothly as well.

The CrossFit Open increases gym member retention
Increase gym member retention in your gym with these tips for running an intramural CrossFit Open.

First, we focused on helping you run a profitable intramural CrossFit Open. Next, we discussed how to make The Open fun for your gym community. We also shared some tips for generating new leads and how PushPress products can help you run the ultimate CrossFit Open.

Today, we’re talking about retention. That’s right, The Open can actually help you to increase member retention numbers for your gym! Check out the details below.

Four Tips to Increasing Member Retention with The CrossFit Open.

1. It Starts with Setting Goals.

In terms of member retention, The CrossFit Open isn’t much different than your typical strategy. We know that members are more likely to stick around if they reach their goals, right?

Reaching goals starts with setting them, and the Open is the perfect time to help members work on that. Whether it’s achieving or improving specific movements, increasing endurance or hitting a heavier weight on a lift, step one is setting the goal.

Therefore, consider offering one-on-one, goal-setting sessions with your members. These can be facilitated by you or your team of coaches. Goal-setting sessions can be beneficial as either a lead-in to The Open or immediately afterward.

Pro Tip: Use the power of automation in PushPress Grow to spread the word about goal-setting sessions. Then use the Appointments function in the Members’ App for easy scheduling. Want to learn more? Book a demo with our team today!

2. Prioritize Gym Member Check-Ins.

Placing an emphasis on gym member check-ins, during The CrossFit Open and year-round, is possibly the easiest way to increase member retention.

In his recent keynote speech, PushPress CEO Dan Uyemura stated that check-ins are the “North Star metric” for any gym owner looking to improve retention. He explained that check-ins create a culture of focus, holding members accountable to their commitments.

Gym member check-ins
Requiring members to reserve a spot and check in to classes increases gym member retention.

PushPress data supports this as well. It shows that, over a 30-day period, a member who shows up only once has a 20 percent chance of quitting the following month. On the other hand, members who come three times per week or more have only a two percent chance of cancelling.

By requiring members to reserve a spot and check in to classes, they’re significantly more likely to hit those attendance goals.

Want to see it in action? Here’s how PushPress client Fixed on Fitness (winner of the 2023 Check-In Challenge) is able to increase retention using gym-member check-ins!

3. Encourage Progress Tracking.

Using a leaderboard in your gym is a great way to reinforce the idea of tracking performance. And The CrossFit Open can be an effective time to introduce the leaderboard concept.

For most gyms, a leaderboard doesn’t have to be a competitive tool, pitting members against each other. Instead, it’s a tool to show the impact of tracking progress over time. Whether it’s logging workouts, recording PRs or habit tracking, the results are... well, better results. And as we know, better results will usually produce increased retention numbers.

Pro Tip: PushPress Train is the perfect tool to help your members track their progress over time. Want to learn more? Book a demo with our team today!

4. Promote Options After The CrossFit Open.

A couple interesting things happens during The CrossFit Open. First, people find themselves realizing they’re capable of much more than they initially thought. And second, they discover areas where they could use some improvement.

The latter is an opportunity for you and your team to help. Even though group classes are likely a core offering at your gym, high-ticket gym services could be a lucrative addition to your lineup.

From individual programming to personal training to nutrition coaching, these add-on services cater to the areas where members need customized help. And remember, people are paying for your expertise and experience, so charge appropriately.

Personal training to increase gym revenue
Offering personal training or individual programming can increase gym revenue after The CrossFit Open.

Ultimately, meeting members where they’re at - and providing them the services to help them reach their goals - will drive retention numbers.

In Summary: Use The CrossFit Open as the Launching Pad to Increase Member Retention.

Despite your members having different backgrounds, challenges and schedules, they share one goal. They initially reached out to you for help with achieving results. They joined your gym because they believed you could help them. And as you show them that you can, they’ll stick around.

Start by helping them set goals. Prioritize consistency by putting an emphasis on gym member check-ins (for The Open and classes year round). Encourage progress tracking for workouts, PRs and habits. And once The CrossFit Open is over, promote options to help them continue improving.

When your members are consistently challenged, motivated and seeing results, your retention numbers will continue to increase for years to come.

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Ashley Adams


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