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Debating with your friends who’s the best CrossFit coach?

Ben Bergeron, Chris Hinshaw, or Mike Burgener?

Here is our list of the best CrossFit coaches of all time.

Do you agree with our picks?

Best CrossFit Coaches:

  1. Ben Bergeron
  2. Chris Hinshaw
  3. Mike Burgener
  4. Rich Froning Sr.
  5. Shane Orr
  6. Matt O’Keefe
  7. Tasia Percevecz
  8. Chad Vaughn
  9. Justin Cotler
  10. Cameron Nichol
  11. James Fitzgerald

#1 Ben Bergeron

  • πŸ† Achievements: Coached multiple CrossFit Games champions, including Mat Fraser and Katrin Davidsdottir
  • πŸ“… Years Active: 2009–Present
  • πŸ‹ Gym: CrossFit New England
  • 🌐 Nationality: American

Ben Bergeron is recognized as one of the top CrossFit coaches in the world, having guided athletes to the pinnacle of the sport. His coaching resume includes the success of multiple athletes at the CrossFit Games, most notably four-time Fittest Man on Earth, Mat Fraser, and two-time Fittest Woman on Earth, Katrin Davidsdottir.

Bergeron’s philosophy transcends physical training, emphasizing the importance of mental toughness, character development, and life balance. He’s the founder of CompTrain, a CrossFit training program followed by thousands around the globe which plans workouts for many competitive CrossFit athletes.

His expertise in athlete development and competition preparation is highly sought after, and his impact on the sport is evidenced by the success of his athletes and their admiration for him as a coach and mentor.

#2 Chris Hinshaw

  • πŸ† Achievements: Renowned for expertise in aerobic capacity training within CrossFit
  • πŸ“… Years Active: 2014–Present
  • πŸ‹ Programs: Aerobic Capacity seminars and coaching
  • 🌐 Nationality: American

Chris Hinshaw is highly regarded in the CrossFit community for his specialized focus on aerobic capacity training and has been instrumental in improving the endurance of many elite CrossFit athletes. His background as an All-American swimmer and an Ironman competitor gives him unique insights into stamina and endurance training.

Through his Aerobic Capacity seminars, Hinshaw has had a profound effect on how endurance training is implemented in CrossFit workouts. He regularly works with CrossFit Games athletes, helping them to excel in the endurance aspects of competition.

Hinshaw’s popularity and respect within the sport are not just due to his coaching achievements but also his ability to effectively communicate complex training concepts in a way that is accessible to athletes of all levels.

#3 Mike Burgener

  • πŸ† Achievements: Influential Olympic weightlifting coach and founder of the Burgener Strength Program
  • πŸ“… Years Active: Several decades, including CrossFit coaching since 2005
  • πŸ‹ Gym: Mike’s Gym in California
  • 🌐 Nationality: American

Mike Burgener, affectionately known within the community as “Coach B,” is a legend in Olympic weightlifting circles and is renowned for his work in improving lifting techniques within the CrossFit community. His involvement in CrossFit as a weightlifting coach goes back to its early days, and he has been a staple at CrossFit seminars and certifications.

With a career spanning several decades, Coach B’s Burgener Strength Program has been a pivotal force in the development of CrossFit athletes’ strength and technique in the snatch and clean and jerk. He is known for his effective coaching cues and the ability to break down complex lifts into understandable segments.

As the owner and head coach of Mike’s Gym, a USA Weightlifting Regional Training Center, Burgener continues to influence both CrossFit athletes and coaches, advancing the standards of Olympic weightlifting within the sport.

#4 Rich Froning Sr.

  • πŸ† Achievements: Father and coach to Rich Froning Jr., four-time CrossFit Games individual champion
  • πŸ“… Years Active: Not widely documented in the context of coaching
  • πŸ‹ Gym: CrossFit Mayhem
  • 🌐 Nationality: American

Rich Froning Sr. is best known as the father of Rich Froning Jr., who is a CrossFit legend in his own right, having won the CrossFit Games four times as an individual. As the patriarch of the Froning family, Rich Sr. has played a formative role in his son’s development as an athlete and competitor.

While there isn’t extensive public information available regarding Rich Sr.’s coaching career, it is clear that he has been an influential figure in his son’s life, both inside and outside of the gym. The Froning family shares a close bond, with their faith and work ethic often highlighted as key elements of their success.

Operating out of CrossFit Mayhem in Cookeville, Tennessee, the Froning family continues to impact the CrossFit community, with their gym becoming a hub for CrossFit enthusiasts seeking to train amongst some of the best athletes in the world.

#5 Shane Orr

  • πŸ† Achievements: Coach and husband of Tia-Clair Toomey, the most decorated female CrossFit athlete
  • πŸ“… Years Active: Not widely documented, but has been coaching Tia-Clair since her early career
  • πŸ‹ Affiliations: CrossFit training and coaching
  • 🌐 Nationality: Australian

Shane Orr is recognized within the CrossFit world as the coach and husband of Tia-Clair Toomey, who is celebrated as one of the greatest female CrossFit athletes of all time. Orr has been by Toomey’s side since her entry into the sport and has been integral to her rise to dominance in the competition.

While specific details of Orr’s coaching career are not widely publicized outside of his connection to Toomey, his impact on her performance is indisputable. Together, they form a powerful team that has routinely conquered the demands of CrossFit training and competition.

As a coach, Orr’s presence on the competition floor is a familiar sight. His strategic guidance and emotional support have been crucial components of Tia-Clair’s success, proving the importance of a trusted coach-athlete relationship.

#6 Matt O’Keefe

  • πŸ† Achievements: President of Loud And Live Sports, agent to top CrossFit athletes
  • πŸ“… Years Active: x
  • πŸ‹ Roles: x
  • 🌐 Nationality: x

Matt O’Keefe is widely known within the CrossFit community, not primarily as a coach, but as an influential figure who represents some of the sport’s top athletes as their agent. He is the President of Loud And Live Sports, a company that not only manages athletes but also organizes fitness events, including CrossFit competitions.

Though my knowledge database does not have detailed information on any coaching career for O’Keefe, his involvement in the CrossFit industry has been important, influencing athlete careers and the broader competitive landscape.

His contributions to the community, therefore, may be more aligned with athlete management and event organization, as opposed to direct coaching roles within the sport.

#7 Tasia Percevecz

  • πŸ† Achievements: CrossFit Games team champion with CrossFit Mayhem
  • πŸ“… Years Active: x
  • πŸ‹ Affiliation: CrossFit Mayhem
  • 🌐 Nationality: American

Tasia Percevecz is primarily known for her success as a CrossFit athlete, notably as a member of the CrossFit Mayhem team where she contributed to multiple team victories at the CrossFit Games. Her transition from individual competition to team-based events demonstrated her versatility and team spirit.

While my knowledge does not extend to detailed specifics of a coaching career for Percevecz, she remains an integral part of the CrossFit Mayhem community, potentially sharing her experiences and learnings with upcoming athletes.

Percevecz’s athletic achievements and affiliation with CrossFit Mayhem, one of the most successful gyms in the history of the sport, have undoubtedly established her as an influential figure in CrossFit.

#8 Chad Vaughn

  • πŸ† Achievements: Two-time USA Olympian in weightlifting, CrossFit weightlifting coach
  • πŸ“… Years Active: x
  • πŸ‹ Courses Offered: CrossFit Weightlifting seminars
  • 🌐 Nationality: American

Chad Vaughn is a well-respected figure in both the Olympic weightlifting community and within CrossFit. As a two-time Olympian, his experience and expertise in weightlifting are unquestionable. Vaughn has successfully translated his knowledge into coaching, providing valuable insights to CrossFit athletes looking to improve their lifting techniques.

By leading CrossFit Weightlifting seminars, Vaughn has made significant contributions to the education of athletes and coaches on the biomechanics and execution of Olympic lifts. His focus on the snatch and clean and jerk has bettered the skillset of countless members of the CrossFit community.

Drawing from his extensive competitive background and a genuine passion for teaching, Vaughn continues to be a sought-after coach for athletes striving to develop their weightlifting abilities within the multifaceted environment of CrossFit.

#9 Justin Cotler

  • πŸ† Achievements: x
  • πŸ“… Years Active: x
  • πŸ‹ Gym: CrossFit Dynamix
  • 🌐 Nationality: x

Justin Cotler is the owner and head coach at CrossFit Dynamix, located in Astoria, New York. While my database does not provide specific achievements as a coach in the CrossFit landscape, Cotler’s gym has been established as a notable place for functional fitness training in the area.

Cotler’s contributions to the CrossFit community potentially include not only coaching athletes but also fostering a supportive and competitive environment at his gym, where members can excel in their fitness journeys.

The influence of local coaches like Cotler in nurturing grassroots CrossFit communities is pivotal to the sport’s overall growth and popularity.

#10 Cameron Nichol

  • πŸ† Achievements: Founder of RowingWOD and former Olympic rower
  • πŸ“… Years Active: x
  • πŸ‹ Specialty: Integrating rowing into CrossFit and fitness training
  • 🌐 Nationality: British

Cameron Nichol is recognized for his expertise in rowing as a former Olympic rower and the founder of RowingWOD, where he utilizes his experience to enhance the rowing performance of CrossFit athletes. His approach to integrating rowing with CrossFit is designed to improve overall fitness and athletic ability.

By running workshops and providing coaching, Nichol has had the opportunity to influence a broad range of athletes, from beginners to seasoned CrossFit competitors, helping them to refine their rowing skills and apply them effectively within workouts.

Nichol’s role within the CrossFit community is a testament to the value of specialized coaching, and his work highlights the importance of mastery in individual disciplines, which can contribute to an athlete’s composite fitness profile.

#11 James Fitzgerald

  • πŸ† Achievements: Winner of the first-ever CrossFit Games in 2007, founder of OPEX Fitness
  • πŸ“… Years Active: Coaching since 1999
  • πŸ‹ Services: Coaching, fitness education, and certification
  • 🌐 Nationality: Canadian

James Fitzgerald, acclaimed for winning the inaugural CrossFit Games in 2007, leveraged his competitive success to establish himself as a thought leader and coach in the fitness industry. He is the founder of OPEX Fitness, where he focuses on individualized coaching and fitness education.

Fitzgerald’s coaching style is rooted in the belief that personalized fitness plans produce optimal results. His experience as an athlete and coach has shaped the OPEX model, which offers coaching certifications and educates fitness professionals on how to implement individual design training.

Fitzgerald’s impact on the fitness and CrossFit communities extends beyond coaching athletes for competition, as his methodologies and teachings have influenced the broader scope of how fitness is approached and tailored to individual needs.


Who is the greatest CrossFit coach of all time?

Ben Bergeron is considered the greatest CrossFit coach, having trained multiple champions, including Katrin Davidsdottir and Mat Fraser.

Who was the most successful CrossFit coach?

Ben Bergeron is the most successful CrossFit coach with multiple athletes winning the CrossFit Games under his guidance.

Caroline founded and runs Veggiewayfarer.com (#1 Sustainable Travel Blog in Belgium). Her travels have led her to hike across the globe, exploring the very best nature has to offer. When she is home in rainy Belgium she keeps in shape by practicing Crossfit and a handful of different sports, both indoor and outdoor.

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