RX Smart Gear’s Alec Smith Grips Banned at CrossFit Games

In a statement released by RX Smart Gear’s CEO, David Newman, the Alec Smith grips have been banned at the 2024 CrossFit Games. The grips have been determined to not meet the standards as set forth in the 2024 CrossFit Games rulebook. As a result, Newman has committed to replacing the grips of any CrossFit Games athlete with modified Alec Smith grips that do fit within the rulebook standards.

The decision was made after multiple conversations and emails between RX Smart Gear and Adrian Bozman, the CrossFit Games Competition Director. In Section 7.03 of the 2024 CrossFit Games Rulebook related to hand protection, one of the items is that “the grips cannot contain a dowel and the grip cannot be sewn into a fold.”

GOWOD Mobility Hero

As you can see in the image below, the end of the grip is folded and sewn, thereby violating the handgrip section of the rulebook.

RX Smart Gear Alec Smith Grips

Following the decision by Bozman and the CrossFit Games, Newman and RX Smart Gear will mail a legal pair with a “slight modification” for those competing at the 2024 CrossFit Games. To get a replacement pair, email info@rxsmartgear.com.

While this announcement comes ahead of the CrossFit Games, it begs the question of how many athletes have already violated the hand protection policy this year. How many athletes wore the grips while competing at Semifinals or during the Open or Quarterfinals?

I was able to catch up with Newman regarding the situation. According to Newman, these grips have been used by athletes in competition for six years with no complaints or concerns by the CrossFit Games or other competition organizers. This included all of the Semifinals…until the final week at the North America East Semifinal.

An athlete was told he could not use the grips because of the sewn end. Newman and his team were able to remove the stitches and the fold, making them legal in time for the athlete to use the grips. Other athletes who used the grips were at Syndicate Crown, but Newman does not know if those athletes used the Alec Smith grips or changed them prior to hitting the floor.

Watch the post below for Newman’s full statement regarding the situation:

YouTube video

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