Clark State Community College associate professor Dana Matt will represent USA Functional Fitness at the Master’s World Championships in Queensland, Australia, this month.
Matt, who has been teaching in the Physical Therapist Assistant program at Clark State for 11 years, said 36 countries have organized “functional fitness federations” with the goal to get CrossFit style competition into the Olympics in 2028. The International Functional Fitness Federation (IF3) is the worldwide governing body.
“There are many different ways that people define fitness,” said Matt. “CrossFit defines the ten domains of fitness, and from that, the IF3 has decided that the best way to ‘test’ someone’s overall fitness is to have them complete an ‘individual medley.’ The individual medley includes tests from six different categories of fitness, often spread out over 2-3 days.”
To qualify for the Master’s World Championship was a multi-step process including an online qualifier, where four different workouts were released. “You then had to video record your workouts and submit them online to be verified,” said Matt. “The top placers from the online qualifier advanced to the national championships. That was a live competition in Chesapeake, VA, in June of 2019. The top three from that competition qualified to compete at the World Championships in Australia.”
Matt said she is training five days per week for about two hours at a time in order to prepare for the competition. “My coach programs various workouts for me,” she said. “His programming has a lot of variety, including barbell movements, such as Olympic lifting movements and power lifting movements, dumbbell movements, kettlebell movements, hanging movements and body weight movements.”
The Master’s World Championships will include six tests of the individual medley, spread out over three days and is divided into age groups. The competition will be held October 25-27.
Matt said she discovered CrossFit just over five years ago and was instantly hooked. “As a former gymnast, a lot of the movements reminded me of the fun of gymnastics as a child,” she said. “After doing CrossFit for about one-and-a-half years, I decided to try a local competition. Since then, I have done a lot of individual, partner and team competitions.”
“I really feel blessed to have the opportunity to represent my country in a world championship competition,” Matt said. “As an older athlete - that’s what ‘master’s’ means, it is sometimes hard to find a way to athletically compete. Functional Fitness gives me the opportunity to compete against others in my age group. Also, I have never been overseas, so I am looking forward to being in Australia.”