Rogue Fitness: A Start-up Success Story

If you are a member of a CrossFit gym, you can’t miss it.  From bumper plates, to abmats, to my personal favorite, the GHD machine, the Rogue Fitness name is everywhere.

Rogue Fitness

Founded in 2006 and based in Columbus, Ohio, Rogue has enjoyed phenomenal growth.  According to Web Smith, AKA @CrossFitChron and the man responsible for @RogueFitness on Twitter, “We currently have 75 people working for us here at Rogue HQ, and we are stationed in an 80,000 square foot facility.”

And just like CrossFit, Rogue Fitness began very humbly as well.

Rogue Fitness and CrossFit

“We started as a garage gym in the CrossFit community.  Rogue began by selling jump ropes and boxes out of a small space.  We were at the 2008 CrossFit Games and it was there when we knew how we wanted to contribute to the CrossFit Community.  We’ve done so ever since.  CrossFit was and is crucial to Rogue Fitness’s success.”

However the company has branched out and also builds equipment for Strongman, Powerlifting, and Olympic lifting as well.

And in a very savvy marketing move, Rogue has aligned itself with many of the top CrossFit Games athletes.  The list includes:

Rich Froning, Mikko Salo, Josh Bridges, Ben Smith, Chris Spealler, Jason Khalipa, Dan Bailey, Matt Chan, Graham Holmberg, Rob Orlando, Tommy Hackenbruck, Rob Darden, Joe Weigel, Patrick Burke, Brad Lutz, Kristan Clever, Miranda Oldroyd, Elyse Umeda, Christy Phillips, Kate Rawlings, Caity Matter, and Lindsey Smith (Web’s wife).

According to Web, Rogue athletes “stand out as individuals, not only athletically but with regards to their humility. Their actions speak for them.”

And with respect to actions speaking for him, Web has done so as well by uprooting his family from Texas to move to Columbus, Ohio to be part of the success of Rogue.

“I made the decision to move to Columbus after getting to know Bill and Caity Henniger, Kris Warner, Ian Maclean and the team. It’s a remarkable organization that I am privileged to be a part of.  I couldn’t pass up the opportunity to learn from these individuals.  I work for the day when Rogue Fitness becomes a household name, for the right reasons. We all work for that same reason here at Rogue HQ.”

Given the ongoing loss of jobs in American manufacturing, it’s great to hear a positive message, not only about growth but about doing things the right way.