Crossfit in Taiwan?!

Hi everyone, I’m an avid Crossfitter and coach out here in California and noticed that while there are “Crossfit Style” gyms in Taiwan, there are no specific Crossfit Boxes out there. I’m greatly interested in opening a true Crossfit Affiliate in Taiwan and would like to gauge the amount of interest in something like this. If some of you would be so kind as to share your thoughts, concerns, wants, and just general interest level in a true Crossfit affiliate in Taiwan it would be truly and greatly appreciated. Even if you just wanted to share a wish list for your perfect gym in Taiwan, any and all input would be extremely helpful. Thank you all in advance for your time and I look forward to your input.

A hard row to hoe… you should talk to Dave at Formosa Fitness about his experiences but opening a business in the fitness industry here in Taiwan faces some serious challenges that include but are not limited to:

  1. Taiwan has zero fitness culture - many of the women are far more interested in just being skinny and for most that equates to just not eating or drinking some magic tea that will make them lose weight. The guys for the most part seem utterly unconcerned with fitness and the ones who are concerned with their appearance often share the same priorities as the women… i.e. just get skinny

  2. Bad public image - The Taiwanese public eyes any sort of gym with suspicion as they are usually perceived as “a gay bar with showers”

First of all, thanks to LoPan for pointing out some of the problems. We have run into those and many more.

Second, I want to address the idea that Formosa Fitness is a “Crossfit style” gym since this isn’t the first time I’ve heard that. So no offense to “shihk1” above. I’ve heard this before.

Formosa Fitness is a gym based on my knowledge of functional fitness mainly derived from my study of internal Chinese martial arts and kettlebells. Basically every movement and piece of equipment we have is based on martial arts power training, although we don’t always say that out loud. So we definitely have our style of fitness and way of doing things.

The problem is that a lot of the equipment we use is similar to a CF gym so some people think we’re a ripoff of them or that we’re using CF style workouts without calling them CF. That is, however, untrue. Although some CF guys and gals do workout in our facility on their own, our preferred way of doing things involves slowing movements down, getting form right, focusing on breathing, and not letting people use things like Olympic lifts before they are ready. AMRAPs are done rarely and with greatly simplified movements. You’ll never see the “bear complex” done at our gym, for example. And we’re a kip-free facility. I simply won’t let folks do ridiculous things that their bodies aren’t ready for no matter how cool they think it looks on Youtube.

So while I am Crossfit level 1 certed and I do admire some aspects of that community, I have decided that what we do is different enough not to pursue affiliation since I don’t want the confusion.

As for setting up an affiliate in Taiwan, without tooting my own horn, LoPan is right that I’m probably the most knowledgeable person in Taiwan about that since any affiliate would face the same problems we have faced and then some. But since I don’t really care for CF methods, I think CF is likely to make the situation worse not better, and since any affiliate would be competing against my gym, I will politely refrain from talking about my experience.

Good luck to you.

Thanks guys, I really do appreciate the input. They’re very good points and I knew going in that there would be a very small market, if any, for Taiwanese locals. I would definitely be catering towards the ex-pat or foreign market.

Dave, thanks for the input, no offense taken and I do agree with a lot of your points. Unfortunately CF does get a lot of bad press due to the ease of affiliation and opening one’s own box. It feels as if there’s a new one opening up every month here in California. I feel very fortunate in that I’ve trained and learned with some very skilled people who have always stressed proper form and consistency over intensity and weight. I fully agree with not letting people do movements that they’re not ready for. For that reason I don’t teach kipping until people can do at least 2-3 strict pull-ups, and I’m totally against the butterfly pullups, can we say destroyed rotator cuffs.

Thanks again for your input and sharing your experience out there, I do greatly appreciate it, and I hope to be able to visit your gym and meet you next time I’m in Taiwan.

Hey Shihk1, i’m in the same boat as you which brought me to this post. Sent you a PM!

Anyone familiar with this Taipei gym?

CrossFit Ba Ke Si 巴克斯? American owner.