Rogue athlete Emma Lawson was just a baby when the first CrossFit Games was held back in 2007. Now, as one of the sport’s emerging young stars, she represents a generation that literally grew up with CrossFit and looks primed to raise the level of competition even higher in the years ahead.
Already a winner of the “Fittest Teen on Earth” title at the 2021 CrossFit Games, Emma broke through to a wider audience in 2022 when she made her debut on the big stage of the Women’s Individual Competition in Madison and finished 6th overall. On her way to Rookie of the Year honors, Emma also finished in the Top 5 in four of the first seven events and became the youngest Games competitor to ever don the white “leader” jersey.
Since then, it’s been a whirlwind of new milestones, from a memorable podium finish at the 2022 Rogue Invitational to more typical teenage experiences, including an 18th birthday and high school graduation. Through it all, Lawson still managed to make her way to the 2023 CrossFit Games with her laser focus intact. And her performance in Madison exceeded even optimistic expectations, as she topped the leaderboard for the majority of the competition, winning two tests outright and ultimately finishing second overall, just 47 points behind new champion Laura Horvath.
“Words cannot even begin to describe what I feel right now,” Emma posted to her social media after receiving her medal as Second Fittest Woman on Earth. “What I do know is that I wouldn’t be standing here if it weren’t for the amazing team of people I am so grateful to have behind me. My family, friends, Coach Woolley, sponsors, all of Madison… Thank you!
By day, Emma is still an ordinary teenager in Cambridge, Ontario, Canada. But behind the scenes, she has developed a unique, highly refined fitness regimen inspired by her CrossFit-enthusiast parents Pete and Cybil Lawson, her coach Josh Woolley, and personal idols like Tia-Clair Toomey. Her recent success as a competitor has led to a rapidly growing fanbase and a regular social media presence, but for Emma, the focus remains on the job ahead: whether it's the new responsibilities of adulthood, or, just maybe, becoming CrossFit’s next great women’s champion.