Which Quarterfinals Workout Was Most Correlated with the Overall Leaderboard?

If you were to guess which Quarterfinals workout was most correlated to overall finish, which workout would you pick? Doing this analysis on previous competitions like the Rogue Invitational or the CrossFit Open sometimes yields results that are a bit surprising (go check out the hyperlinks from those competitions).

So for Quarterfinals, I ran the correlation analysis for the top 500 individual athletes worldwide for both the men’s and women’s division. And to be a bit honest, the results aren’t actually that surprising this time around.

Women’s Correlation Analysis

When looking at how each event correlated to the overall finish of the top 500 women, all five workouts had a correlation greater than 0.4, the same as what happened in the women’s division during the Open. [Note: this was not the case for the men in the Open or Quarterfinals]

Workout Correlation
Workout 1 0.457
Workout 2 0.428
Workout 3 0.443
Workout 4 0.407
Workout 5 0.636

As you can see in the table above, Workout 5, the deadlift and CTB/BMU/Rope Climb workout was the most correlated to overall finish on the women’s leaderboard.

Workout 4, the Row/GHDSU/V-up workout was the least correlated, but at 0.407 it is still relatively correlated. As mentioned above, all of the workouts had a relatively high correlation. None of the workouts were outliers from the standpoint of not being correlated to the overall leaderboard.

But…the men’s correlation analysis was a bit different.

Men’s Correlation Analysis

When looking at the men’s event correlation, the first thing that stands out is that Workout 5 was the most correlated to overall finish (same as the women), but it was only 0.435, far below that of the women.

And whereas all of the workouts for the women had a correlation above 0.4, only Workout 5 did for the men. In fact, three of the workouts had a correlation below 0.3, quite low for that many workouts.

Workout Correlation
Workout 1 0.213
Workout 2 0.283
Workout 3 0.282
Workout 4 0.390
Workout 5 0.435

The lowest correlated event for the men was Workout 1, the one with the wall-facing handstand push-ups. It basically means that those athletes who did well in this workout did not fare so well in the other workouts, thereby pushing their overall finish down the leaderboard.

My interpretation of these workouts and how they correlated to overall finish is that Workouts 1-3 allowed specialists (handstand push-ups, crossovers or strength) to excel in that particular event. Workouts 4 & 5 did not allow a specialist to excel thereby allowing the overall best athletes to perform well against the field.

The women’s correlations differed, in my opinion, because there aren’t as many “specialists” that mix up the leaderboard compared to the men’s field. Thus, the better overall women tend to do better in each event without that specialist inserting themselves into a high event finish. It could also mean that certain skills like ring muscle-ups were the limiting factor rather than the wall-facing HSPU such that the top athletes were better, in general, at RMU.

Also, the women’s weight on Workout 3 was likely not as heavy when compared to that of the men’s barbell weight thereby rewarding top-end strength as much as it did with the men.

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