SA's super-fit battle it out for inaugural Eastern Cape title

NOVEMBER 16, 2015

Fittest men and women in the country head to PE this week for Nutritech East Cape Championships

More than 100 of South Africa’s fittest men and women will be pitted against one another this weekend when they participate in the inaugural Nutritech East Cape Championships, presented by CrossFit Algoa – the first functional fitness competition of its kind for the province.

Baywest Mall will play host to the three-day event, which will put on display the crème de la crème of some of the most beach-ready bodies in Africa, many of whom have featured in top international fitness competitions and as the enviable cover models on health magazines.

Presented by CrossFit Algoa, the championships will run from Friday to Sunday (November 20 to 22) in a cordoned off area at the Baywest Mall. Founder of CrossFit Algoa, Dave Levey, said the event was in response to a growing public interest in the functional fitness lifestyle.

“It’s about promoting a healthy lifestyle and will also show the public what functional fitness is all about, how fun our sport is, and also the camaraderie involved,” said Levey. 

Levey is no novice to the fitness world, having twice been named the “fittest in Africa” after winning the Reebok CrossFit Open and Regionals for Africa. He was invited to the Reebok CrossFit Games in Carson California where he placed 36 out of 46 of the World’s Fittest Men in 2012, and 32 in 2013.

Adding to the interest in the event was that health and fitness experts – many of whom were also participants in the competition – would also be on hand to advise the public on exercise and diet, he said.

Levey said super-fit participants from the region included Dean Shaw, Jaco van der Vyfer, Eva Thornton – who recently came fourth at the Reebok CrossFit Games in California in the category of ladies masters 45 to 49 – as well as Tasquane Hufkie.

National fitness title holders include Ruan Duvenage and Lara Erlank (Cape Town), Janine Pennial and Dina Swift (Pretoria), as well as Nicole Seymour (Durban), who placed second at the 2014 Reebok CrossFit Games Regionals.

Levey said myths that the event aimed to dispel included that exercise was boring; that functional fitness was dangerous; that too much exercise made one “too big or muscular”; and that “only ‘sporty-looking’ people should be involved in functional fitness”.

“At CrossFit Algoa we focus firstly on correct position with each exercise, then on the correct exercise movement. Only after that do we add speed and, lastly, load [weight]. We ask clients to leave their egos at the door and to progress at an appropriate pace. We are all about the long term health and performance benefits,” said Levey. 

“We focus on behavioural goals that we can take control of on a daily basis and so effect improvements in one’s exercise performance that will make participants healthier, fitter and better human beings. Aesthetic appearance is just one of the results, but it is not the focus.”

Baywest Mall marketing manager Samantha Hewitson said the mall’s hosting of the competition was in keeping with its promise to bring new and exciting firsts to the province.

“This event is all about engaging with the community and promoting a healthy lifestyle, which is what the Baywest brand is all about,” said Hewitson.

“We have been proud to bring new and exciting firsts to the province, from IMAX and the ice rink to great new brands for the region, and hosting events such as this is in keeping with that.”


The Individual Event:

The Individual event will take place in one action packed day on Friday, November 20. Approximately 60 competitors with 20 of the top athletes from around Africa will participate in this event.  These athletes and other individuals are then encouraged to enter the team competition on November 21 and 22. These athletes can enter as Super Teams or with their Box Affiliate Team.

The Team Event:

Approximately 150 competitors from around the country will participate in the team event. Teams will be comprised of four individuals (two men and two women) for all categories. Super Team (Rx Division) members can be made up of individuals from different Boxes and or Non-affiliates.

Box Teams (Rx Division) must consist of individuals who are training at the same Box, and is only open to Official CrossFit Affiliates. The Scaled Team Division is open to both Affiliates and Non-affiliates. The Super Teams and Box Teams will both participate in the Rx’ed heats. Rx’ed Division – Box Teams and Super Teams will have the following sub-divisions:  1) Box Teams vs Box Teams; 2) Super Teams vs Super Teams; 3) Super Teams vs Box Teams.

Image: FIGHTING FIT: Dave Levey, who has twice been named the fittest man in Africa, is behind the inaugural Nutritech East Cape Championships, which aims to promote a healthy lifestyle in the province.