Firstly let me start by saying, if you are deliberating on whether to ride a scooter or get a taxi to S2S CrossFit in Canguu in Bali, I can tell you right off the bat that the latter is definitely the smarter option.
Ok, so after 15 right turns, 18 left turns and 23 wrong turns I arrived at S2S CrossFit. Finding the place took me 45 minutes longer than I was hoping for but the scenery more than made up for it. Day to day Balinese life, rice paddies, rolling hills, beaches and more. The drive provides a smorgasbord for the senses. When I finally reached my destination I pulled my scooter up to a familiar site, the smiles of S2S CrossFit. This wasn’t the first time for me training at S2S. I have become a semi-regular at Bali’s only CrossFit box and am made to feel right at home every time I hit a WOD there. Strength 2 Strength CrossFit is the official name and a fitting one it is at that. From it’s humble beginnings as a place for a few expats and locals to get together to throw down, to the booming little box that it has become, S2S CrossFit is definitely going in the right direction. Plans for expansion, more classes, new high profile coaches and all that other good stuff is happening down at S2S as we speak but it’s not that that gets the people coming back for more. It’s the community.
This may sound like the old CrossFit cliche used by every box owner from here to Timbuktu but this time it’s for real guys. The first WOD I ever threw down at S2S CrossFit was nothing short of amazing. Ollie the kiwi, Dustin from the states, the owner Crissilia, everybody made you feel right at home. Like most good boxes in the CrossFit community it’s one of those places that you don’t just go to train, you go to hang out. It’s everybody’s 3rd place (home, work, the box) and home away from home. Nothing typifies that more than the sight you see when walking in to one of the later classes at S2S. You will typically see a load of people from one of the previous classes sitting around, hanging out, cheering on or shooting the shit with one of the other regulars or one of the 'in and outers’ over in Bali on a holiday. The place sometimes reminds me of the feeling you get when you walk into a good hostel and thou get that instant conversation started with some like minded people from all over the world. It’s a great feeling.
So back to the actually CrossFit side of things. If I were to tell you that the space is small, it’s sometimes dark, the floor is uneven in places and from time to time you would be fighting over the last bit of chalk you might think this place isn’t the best place to train. BUT YOU’D BE WRONG! CrossFit is so commercialised, lucrative and popular now that the uber-classy brand new mega-wharehouse with the Eleiko bars type boxes are popping up everywhere. But when did that become important in CrossFit? S2S has taken us back to the roots. Back to a time when it didn’t matter that your bumpers weren’t competition coloured. This is a place to come to get work done! Simple as that. No mucking around. Come in to work hard, sweat lots, laugh, meet, cheer and hang out with a radical bunch of expats and travellers alike from all corners of the globe. Crissilia the owner has done a great job of putting together a great team, combining exciting programming all with a super positive environment to make S2S a box you really want to check out if you are ever in Bali.
Check out an interview with Crissilia the owner of S2S below;
Crissilia Suta - The Owner.
Q: So Crissilia, what was your first CrossFit experience?
A: The first time I did CrossFit was with my workmate that I used to work with at a gym years ago. I’d never heard of it because it wasn't so big back in NZ at the time, I thought I was coming in just for another workout with her, but it put me on the ground and I was hooked ever since.
Q: You were the first affiliate in Bali right? What was it like building a community of CrossFitters from scratch?
A: Yeah we are. Coming into it, I had no clue how it was going to turn out. I was just planning on starting something really small knowing that the fitness industry isn't exactly booming here. It took a while to get some regulars in as Bali is a really transient island, so there was a lot of educating needed and a ton of fundamental sessions. Most expats and locals have never heard of CrossFit here. But it all paid off in the end... our athletes are charging and pumped as ever!
Q: What are some of the difficulties in setting up a box in a place like Bali?
A: Definitely the lack of resources! It was a challenge holding down the growing capacity on my own in the beginning and sourcing equipment. Luckily some of our athletes have gone the whole nine yards, got their L1 and are now helping us out as coaches. As for the gear, that's still a challenge. Getting local builders and carpenters to make things which they don't understand the function of gets tricky. Importing fitness gear also is tricky... and expensive. So we gotta get creative.
Q: Do you enjoy the diversity of the box with such a transient client base coming through?
A: Totally! I've learnt so much from training with and talking to athletes from a huge variety of cultural and training backgrounds. We've had a number of regionals and games athletes who are generous enough to share tips, advice and even guest coach some of our classes. We've been exposed to all sorts of training methods from all around the world. Many of our visitors usually ends up getting hooked to this place and end up staying. They usually become part of our furniture! It keeps us tight as most people aren't from around here, so the box becomes their adopted family away from home.
Q: What are your plans for S2S CrossFit going into the future?
A: We're currently working on expanding to a larger space to accommodate for our growing community. And to combine a lot more of beach and surfing WODs as people seem to get so pumped when we put those on. The new building will be custom built for our box so I'm stoked! Good things coming, so watch this space!
Bill, otherwise known as ‘Doc’ is the founding father of AdventureFit Travel. An avid traveller/backpacker Doc spends more time with a backpack on his back than your average primary school student. Across his travels Doc encountered many adventures. From swimming with sharks, patting lions, riding elephants and running with bulls. He has visited 5 continents on his quest for adventure and plans to visit more with his AdventureFit family.
Not only is Doc passionate about lust for adventure but he is also an avid fitness enthusiast. Working in the CrossFit industry has shown him... Read more.