Open 24.3 Strategy for Scaled and Masters

Written By Charleh Knighton  |  The Open 

It's the final workout of the 2024 CrossFit® Open and it brings with it a surprising twist that caught everyone off guard. In this piece, we'll explore the strategy for masters and scaled divisions in 24.3 of the CrossFit® Open, offering all the essential tips and tactics to help you achieve your best performance yet.

With spots in the quarterfinals up for grabs, it's time to showcase your strength and skill. Let's delve into the challenge of 24.3 CrossFit® Open and emerge victorious!

>>>> For the full workout movement, standards and scorecard, check it out here

24.3 CrossFit® Open Overall Strategy

The optimal strategy for this workout varies depending on your overall gymnastics proficiency and how well you handle gymnastics movements under fatigue.

It's important to recognize that this workout consists of two distinct parts. The initial five rounds of jumping chest-to-bar and thrusters can be deceiving, especially if you're unsure about maintaining unbroken sets in the second part.

For the majority of athletes, pacing is crucial during this phase. Approach it as a controlled warm-up, maintaining a steady pace. It might feel slower than you're used to, but it's a wise approach, particularly if you're still working on mastering bar muscle-ups.

Consider the first half of the workout as an extended and more challenging version of Fran. Then, you're essentially transitioning into a heavier Fran with chest-to-bar or chin-ups. Keep this in mind as you tackle the workout.

Scaled Athletes
(or Masters aged 35-54)

We’re going to break up our strategy into 4 distinct athlete levels for our scaled athletes;

  1. Level 1: The athlete can not not do 1 kipping pullup.
  2. Level 2: The athlete may be able to get a kipping pullup with some open magic (maybe a few total reps).
  3. Level 3: The athlete can perform kipping pullups but are unsure they will finish.
  4. Level 4: The athlete can perform kipping pullups and will finish the workout.

Masters (55+ only)

We’re going to break up our strategy into 4 distinct athlete levels for our 55+ Masters;

  1. Level 1: The athlete can kipping pull-ups but can not do 1  chest-to-bar pullup.
  2. Level 2: The athlete can perform kipping pullups and maybe be able to get 1 chest-to-bar to bar pullup with some open magic.
  3. Level 3: The athlete can perform kipping pullups and can do chest to bar pullups in workouts and may have a chance at finishing the workout
  4. Level 4: The athlete can perform all movements and will for sure finish the workout.

Strategy for a Level 1 Athlete:

In 24.3, the first five rounds are pivotal for establishing your position. Your main objective should be to achieve a lightning-fast tie-break time by the conclusion of the fifth round.

If you typically perform singles for your initial gymnastics movement (unless you consistently complete more than 5-6 unbroken reps in a workout), consider aiming for unbroken sets on thrusters or maintaining a brisk pace with two quick sets.

This strategic approach is essential for minimizing your overall time and achieving your tie-break objective.

Strategy for a Level 2 Athlete:

The ultimate focus of this workout lies in mastering the second gymnastic movement, whether it's the chest-to-bar pull-up or chin-over-bar pull-ups. Just a single rep can propel you ahead of numerous athletes who struggle to achieve it.

Even if you're confident in hitting just one rep, remember that your tie-break time still matters, so maintain a tactical approach without slowing down unnecessarily.

The key to success in the latter part of the workout is maintaining composure and keeping your heart rate under control. Take advantage of the ample time available to shake out your arms and refocus.

Never push yourself to the brink of failure on any movement. Opt for smaller sets or even singles on jumping chest-to-bar (or chin-ups for Masters 55+), and break your thrusters into manageable chunks such as 6/4 or 5/5.

A prudent strategy for determining your gymnastic sets is to ensure you never exceed 50% of your maximum working capacity. For instance, if your max set is 10 but your max working set in a workout is 6, stick to sets of 3 or fewer.

When faced with heavy thrusters, resist the temptation to push beyond your limits. Break them into 2 or 3 sets to conserve energy for the crucial task—achieving that second gymnastic movement.

Strategy for a Level 3 Athlete:

Your primary objective should be to excel in your second gymnastic movement and optimize your performance on them. Disregard the tie-break; each successful rep will significantly boost your position on the leaderboard.

Therefore, your strategy should focus on pacing yourself through the initial five rounds to keep your heart rate under control and strategically manage arm fatigue.

For your first gymnastic movement, aim to divide them into 2-3 sets per round, ensuring each set is manageable to conserve your grip strength, ward off arm fatigue, and maintain a steady heart rate

Make sure that each set doesn't surpass 50% of your maximum working capacity. It's acceptable to start at a slower pace as it will help you rest less between your second gymnastic movement in the latter part of the workout.

Regarding thrusters, you can choose to complete them unbroken or break them into 2 sets, as long as you sustain approximately 80% effort overall.

When faced with the second barbell, contemplate breaking it into 2 or even 3 sets, depending on its weight for you. This approach positions you to efficiently accumulate those valuable second gymnastic movement reps.

Remember, every rep matters. Concentrate closely on your technique and utilize specific cues to ensure successful attempts. The key is to maximize efficiency and ensure that each movement contributes to your success.

Strategy for a Level 4 Athlete:

Let's dive into the heart of this workout, starting with the second set of 5 rounds. Your success here hinges on how well you set yourself up to minimize rest during the latter half of the session. 

Forget about the tie break time; it's not a concern for you. You've got the ability to tackle  sets of chest-to-bar pull-ups or chin-over-bar pull-ups (depending on your division) even when fatigue sets in, and that's your ticket to winning.

Now, unless you're operating at the level of a semifinals (INDIVIDUAL) athlete, it's wise to break your gymnastic movements from the get-go. Sure, you'll likely blitz through the first part of the workout, feeling strong and steady for rounds 1, 2, and 3.

But beware—rounds 4 and 5 will sneak up on you. You might think you're halfway there, but in reality, you're only a third of the way through in terms of effort. Ease up the pace more than you think necessary. Seriously, take it slower than your instincts prompt you to.

Even consider splitting your thrusters 4/3, unless you're a gymnastics wizard pulling off 20+ unbroken. The front half of this workout is a mirage; treat it like it doesn't even exist.

And as for the second half? Same story. Our aim is to get you through it feeling primed to tackle 5 rounds for time. If you're already on your knees, gasping for air in the first round of the second half, then we know we pushed too hard in the opening segment.

Movement Limiters and Top Tip Fixes!

Our Top Tips: Jumping Pull Ups

This one is my favorite because it matches the tempo and effort of a kipping pull-up and so preserves the stimulus of the workout. You can see why they've been included in 24.3 Open Workout!

If you haven’t heard of these before, start off by grabbing a box and placing it underneath your pull-up bar. You’ll then perform a kipping pull-up by jumping off when you go to pull your chin over the bar.

Remember, you can't jump off the box in 24.3 CrossFit® Open, but you can practice in the warm up.

Check out the video above for a more in depth guide.

Want to be as efficient as possible in your jumping chest-to-bar pull ups?
This is our number ONE trick to nailing this movement.

Check out the video above, before you head into 24.3. You'll thank me later. 

How To Attack Your Pacing for 24.3 Open Workout For Scaled & Masters

To approach the 24.3 Open Workout effectively, your pacing strategy should align with your objectives and the athlete tier you fall into.

Here's a breakdown of how to pace yourself based on your level:

Level 1 Athlete:

Focus on sprinting to reach the tiebreak marker. Maintain a sustainable pace throughout all five rounds to ensure you're prepared for the later stages of the workout.

Striking a balance between speed and endurance is crucial to sustain your effort until the end.

Level 2 Athlete:

Prioritize fully recovering during the first part of the workout, even if it means taking plenty of breaks.

Don't worry about the tiebreak time at this stage; instead, aim to achieve one or two reps of the second gymnastic movement to climb the leaderboard. If the movement proves challenging, switch to Level 1 mode and focus on securing the best tiebreak time possible.

Level 3 Athlete:

Focus on pacing yourself moderately in the first part of the workout, aiming to stay recovered enough to comfortably perform singles on the second gymnastic movement without prolonged rests. Break up the first part of the workout to maintain a steady effort level and ensure adequate recovery between sets.

Level 4 Athlete:

Approach the first half of the workout with caution, giving it an 80% effort to reduce your tiebreak time. This will help you conserve energy for the second half and maintain quick thrusters and sets of the second gymnastic movement. Focus on preparing for the latter part of the workout rather than solely on the initial rounds.

Climb The Leaderboard With Breathing Technique

Mastering breathing techniques is essential for maximizing efficiency during the workout.

For thrusters, inhale deeply at the top of each rep and exhale forcefully as you drive up. Consider using the fast thruster technique to minimize time under tension and maintain a swift pace.

When it comes to gymnastics movements, keep your breathing pattern simple and consistent. Avoid trying to synchronize your breath with every movement to prevent exhaustion and elevated heart rate.

Finding that Extra 1%: Mindset

Focus on "doing the next thing" rather than worrying about big sets or the clock. Trust in your training and believe in your ability to overcome challenges.

Be prepared for the second gymnastic movement and second bar to be tougher than expected, and approach them with determination.

How To Recover From 24.3 CrossFit® Open Scaled and Masters

After completing the workout, prioritize recovery by taking care of your biceps and legs.

Hydrate well, stretch your muscles, and consider gentle activities like walking or biking to flush out metabolic waste and aid recovery.

Again, if you don't think you've drank enough water, go get another drink. We promise you, it'll help.

Key Takeaways:

Successfully completing 24.3 in the CrossFit® Open requires a strategic approach tailored to your skill level and objectives.

Pace yourself wisely, focus on mastering breathing techniques, maintain a strong mental game, and prioritize post-workout recovery.

With these strategies in mind, you're ready to conquer 24.3 and showcase your capabilities in the Open.

Let's go!

The Open is here!

For years, we've created free strategy guides packed with value teaching YOU how to get your best score yet.

You've put in the hard work, and now it's time to get all the tools you need on HOW to attack this year's workouts.

Plus, you'll receive a bunch of cool FREE bonuses in our Open Starter Pack.

Join hundreds of athletes from around the world who CRUSH the leaderboard every year with our guides.

24.2 CrossFit® Open Rx Workout & Standards

If you want to read the full series, click the links below! Enjoy!

Top CrossFit Workouts to Practice Before The Open

2024 CrossFit Open: 3 Unconventional Things to Practice (+ New Movements)

6 Movements to Master Before the CrossFit Open 2024

Where to Get the CrossFit Open 2024 Leaderboard

Top 5 Hardest Workouts from past Opens

How To Reduce The Risk of Injury in the Open 2024 

Best Way To Recover In Between The Open Workouts 2024

How Can CrossFit Affiliates Prepare For The CrossFit Open

Disclaimer: WODprep is not affiliated with CrossFit®, Inc nor is it endorsed by CrossFit, Inc or any of its subsidiaries. CrossFit® is a registered trademark of CrossFit, Inc. We are an independent group of functional fitness athletes trying to help people like us perform better in their WODs and everyday lives.

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