CrossFit programming is decentralized, but its general methodology is used by thousands of private affiliated gyms, fire departments, law-enforcement agencies, and military organizations, including the Royal Danish Life Guards,[27][28][29][30] as well as by some U.S. and Canadian high-school physical-education teachers, high-school and college sports teams, and the Miami Marlins.[14][31][32]

This 2003 CrossFit Journal article captures an early conception of a universal, multi-event test of fitness that laid the foundation for CrossFit competition, including what would become the CrossFit Open and the CrossFit Games. The design requirements for such a test "included but were not limited to the following: quantifiable results; consistency with the CrossFit fitness concept; raising our commitment to improving absolute strength, relative strength, and gymnastic foundations; balancing intrinsic abilities of smaller and larger athletes; emphasizing exercises critical to and foundational to advanced training; mixing training demands within each test and, of course, over the total competition; a design that would identify an athlete’s weaknesses and possibly stand as a workout plan for improving overall fitness; and, finally, we wanted to design a competition that would be 'hard as hell.'"