HYROX Doubles: 10 step Guide for Newbies to Win Big

Photo of a competitor engaged in rowing on a Concept 2 rowing machine while a judge observes. The image captures the essence of teamwork and endurance in a Hyrox Doubles event

Ah, HYROX Doubles.

The name alone conjures up images of sweat, grit, and the sweet taste of victory—or the salty taste of sweat, depending on how you look at it.

If you’re new to HYROX, you’re in for a treat.

And if you’re not, well, you’re still in for a treat because we’re diving deep and have included a Statistical Analysis tool for you to compare your past and future doubles times at the click of a button.

So, grab your protein shake, sit back, and let’s get into the nitty-gritty of HYROX Doubles.

And if your interested in using ChatGPT to write your personalised Workout Routines and personalised Meal Plans feel free to checkout these free tools.

1. What is HYROX and How Does it Work?

The Brainchild Behind the Race

HYROX is the brainchild of Upsolut Sports founder Christian Toetzke,.

It’s a blend of functional movements and running.

Think of it as the love child of CrossFit and a marathon, but indoors.

The race is designed by Mintra Tilly, and it’s not for the faint-hearted.

Click here for the full Beginners Guide to Hyrox

The Drill: Run, Workout, Repeat

Here’s the drill: You run 1 km, then do a workout. Repeat this 8 times.

That’s 8 km of running and 8 workouts. The catch? There is no catch, you simply have to do them in a specific order.

Your ranking is based on your fastest time, and there are different divisions and age groups.

So, whether you’re a spring chicken or a wise owl, there’s a spot for you.

2. HYROX Doubles: The Power of Two

Marcus Ellwell (Brain Tumour Survivor) found his strength again through HYROX. After completing in 2022, 17 months after brain surgery, Marcus said:

“Every race is as much about the mental grit as it is about physical endurance. Competing in Men’s Doubles wasn’t just about the race; it was about reclaiming my life.”

Who Can Compete?

HYROX Doubles is where things get interesting. It’s a 2-person team competition, and it’s open to everyone.

The only condition? You have to be at least 16 years old.

You can register on the HYROX website, and bosh, you’re in!

Image showcasing the diversity of participants in 'Hyrox Doubles: Who Can Compete.' Three athletic men of different age ranges and impressive fitness levels stand together, exemplifying the inclusivity of the event for individuals of varying backgrounds and ages

3. HYROX Divisions and Ranking

Women, Men, and Mixed Divisions

HYROX Doubles has three divisions:

  • Women
  • Men
  • Mixed

Each division has its own set of rules for repetitions and weights, but the running distance is the same for everyone—1 km between each workout.

You’ll also be ranked within your age group;

Based on the average age of the two DOUBLES participants at the time of the event.

(1) U29 (16-29)
(2) 30-39
(3) 40-49
(4) 50-59
(5) 60-69
(6) 70+

4. The Competition

The YGIG Principle

In HYROX Doubles, you and your partner will run together for the entire 1 km between workout stations.

The workouts can then be completed in a combined effort, following the “You Go, I Go” (YGIG) principle. One person works while the other rests, and you can switch as needed.

5. HYROX Workout Stations

The 8 Workouts: What to Expect

The 8 station workloads can be split and shared, and it’s up to each team member how far they go. For example, in a 1000m row, one person can row 250m, then switch.

The key is to complete the entire distance or set of repetitions between you.

Don’t forget to do your research and invest in the right footwear. Our guide to the Best Shoes for Hyrox in 2023 can help you decide

6. The HYROX Running Sections

Michael Sandbach (Amsterdam 2022 Doubles Champion) emphasises the value of comfort with long-distance running:

“HYROX is over 50% running, so the advice I give to most people – and probably the biggest thing people miss out on – is to get comfy running non-stop for 40-60 minutes.”

Image portraying the camaraderie and teamwork in 'Hyrox Doubles: The Running Section.' Two women running side by side with joyful expressions, highlighting the collaborative spirit and shared effort during running

Stick Together or Face the Consequences

You must run the race together at all times. If one person sprints ahead, you’ll get a 3-minute penalty. So, stick together like gym buddies should!

Running Guidelines

  • Both team members must enter and exit the workout stations together.
  • The running distance is consistently 1 km, divided into 2-4 laps depending on the venue.
  • In some instances, the first lap may not be exactly 1km due to a staggered start. Any discrepancy will be adjusted in the final lap.

Lane Markings

The running track has markings that divide it into two speed lanes: a fast lane and a regular speed lane.

Athletes running at a faster pace should use the marked fast lane, while those at a regular speed should use the corresponding lane.

7. HYROX Movement Standards, Distances, and Weights

This bit is very long and in depth so feel free to skip through, come back or make a strong coffee and plough straight through..

General Rules

• Complete all workouts, in the correct order.
• Perform each exercise according to the movement standards.
• Use the correct start and finish points of the workout station.
• Complete the correct number of repetitions and/or distances.
• Perform the exercises/movements with the correct weight in kilogram.

The Ski Erg

  • Before you begin the SkiErg, a referee needs to (re)set the monitor.
  • Keep your feet on the platform throughout the exercise. It’s fine to lift your feet while doing the exercise. 
  • Once you’ve covered the needed distance, raise your arm to signal a referee. They’ll confirm you’ve completed the required distance. 
  • Only after the referee confirms your completion, you can step off the platform and leave the station.
  • The partner who’s taking a break stays within the designated area.
  • Distance: 1000 meters
  • The resistance setting on the ergometer will be automatically set as follows:
    • WOMEN: 5
    • MEN: 6
    • MIXED: 6
  • Note: For DOUBLES Teams, each pair can change the resistance setting to their preference once. But once a partner starts the exercise, the team can’t change it again. You must stick with the chosen setting until the whole distance is done.

The Sled Push

Image showcasing 'Hyrox Doubles: The Sled Push' segment. Two participants working together to push heavy sleds across a marked course, demonstrating strength, coordination, and teamwork in this challenging fitness challenge
  • When it’s time to push the sled, remember that both you and the sled should be entirely behind the line before you begin.
  • Each time you push the sled, make sure it passes the 12.5 m mark completely before you change its direction.
  • Complete four rounds of pushing the sled 12.5 meters to finish the station.
  • If you don’t finish the four rounds there’s a 3-minute penalty for each round you miss out on.

Team Dynamics: Staying in Sync

  • As you take a breather, your partner walks right behind you, supporting your effort.
  • If your partner gets in the way of others, maybe by crossing lanes, there’s a 10m distance penalty to handle. Teamwork makes the dream work, after all!

Distance to Conquer: 4 rounds of 12.5 meters (unless penalties come into play)

Weight Challenges (including the sled):

  • For the ladies: 102 kg
  • For the gents: 152 kg
  • And for the mixed teams: 152 kg

The Sled Pull

  • Ensure that both the sled and participant are positioned fully behind the line before beginning.
  • When the participant pulls the sled beyond the 12.5 m mark, they switch sides and pull the sled back.
  • Throughout the pull, the participant must remain standing; sitting or kneeling while pulling the sled is not allowed.
  • Always stay within the designated Athlete’s Box, without crossing its boundaries, while pulling the sled.
  • Keep the rope within your lane and avoid obstructing neighbouring lanes during the pull.
  • Once you’ve successfully completed four rounds of pulling the sled for 12.5 meters each and the entire sled crosses the start/finish line, the station is finished.
  • If any of the mentioned guidelines are violated during the pull, the attempt becomes invalid. A second violation results in a 5 m distance penalty, which the athlete must pull back themselves.
  • If you complete less than four rounds, there’s a penalty of 3 minutes for each missing round.

» Resting Partner Dynamics: Observing the Rules

  • The resting partner remains behind the working partner and must refrain from assisting with the rope or touching it.

Distance to Conquer: 4 rounds of 12.5 meters (unless penalties come into play)

Weight Challenges (including the sled):

  • WOMEN: 78 kg
  • MEN: 103 kg
  • MIXED: 103 kg

Burpee Broad Jumps

  • Burpees Start with both hands placed behind the line.
  • Begin in an upright position, with hands positioned near your feet, up to one-foot length away. Once your hands touch the ground, they must remain stationary and not move forward.
  • While in the lowered position, ensure your chest makes contact with the ground.
  • Afterward, stand up and jump forward, landing with both feet simultaneously.
  • When returning to the upright position or jumping back from the lowered position, your feet must not go beyond the position where your hands were placed.
  • You’re in control of the jump’s length; go as far as you can.
  • Avoid taking steps forward between repetitions; this isn’t allowed.
  • Complete the station once you’ve jumped past the finish line.
  • Should you violate any of the previously mentioned points, the repetition becomes invalid. After a second warning, a 10 m distance penalty is incurred.

» Team Dynamics: Supporting Each Other

  • The resting partner follows behind the working partner. If the walking partner obstructs others by crossing lanes, a 10m distance penalty is applied to the team.

Distance to Conquer: 80 meters (unless penalties apply)

Rowing

Image illustrating 'Hyrox Doubles: Rowing' activity. A man and woman rowing side by side on indoor rowing machines
  • Before commencing the workout, a referee must set or reset the rowing machine monitor
  • Keep in mind that participants’ feet should not touch the ground during rowing.
  • Once you’ve covered the required distance, raise your arm to signal a referee. Their confirmation that you’ve completed the required distance is essential.
  • Once you’ve received the referee’s confirmation, you’re free to leave the platform and the station.

» Team Dynamics During Rest:

  • The resting partner remains within the marked area and ensures they don’t obstruct other participants.

Distance to Cover: 1000 meters

Resistance Setting for the Ergometer:

  • For WOMEN: 5
  • For MEN: 6
  • For MIXED Teams: 6

Note: Every DOUBLES Team has the flexibility to adjust the damper setting to their preference once. However, once a partner initiates the exercise, the team is not allowed to make further changes. You must adhere to the chosen setting until the entire distance is covered.

Kettlebell Farmers Carry

  • Start and finish the Farmers Carry by picking up and returning the kettlebells to the designated area next to the start/finish line.
  • Always carry both kettlebells while moving
  • Ensure that you carry the kettlebells with both arms extended.
  • It’s allowed to place the kettlebells down briefly to take a rest.
  • Complete the station once you’ve carried the kettlebells across the finish line and returned them to the designated area.

» Team Dynamics During Rest:

  • The resting partner walks behind the working partner without obstructing others.

Distance to Cover: 200 meters

Kettlebell Weight (per kettlebell):

  • For WOMEN: 16 kg (white)
  • For MEN: 24 kg (grey)
  • For MIXED Teams: 24 kg (grey)

Sandbag Lunge

Image illustrating 'Hyrox Doubles: Sandbag Lunges,' featuring a competitor performing lunges with a sandbag. The athlete is engaged in a fitness challenge, showcasing strength and determination
  • Begin and conclude the Sandbag Lunge by picking up and returning the sandbag to the marked area beside the start/finish line.
  • Independently lift the sandbag and position it on your shoulders without help.
  • Start in an upright position with both feet placed behind the line.
  • For each lunge, ensure your rear knee touches the ground.
  • Conclude a repetition by fully extending your knees and hips.
  • Alternate lunges with both knees touching the ground in turn.
  • You can either lunge without stopping or pause after each lunge with both feet grounded.
  • Avoid taking steps between lunges; this is not allowed.
  • Transfer the sandbag from shoulder to shoulder sideways or backward, but not forward.
  • The station is marked as complete once you’ve lunged past the finish line and returned the sandbag to the marked area.

» Team Dynamics During Rest:

  • The resting partner walks behind the working partner. If the walking partner obstructs others, such as by crossing lanes, a 10m distance penalty is incurred.

Distance to Cover: 100 meters (unless penalties apply)

Sandbag Weight:

  • For WOMEN: 10 kg (white marking)
  • For MEN: 20 kg (grey marking)
  • For MIXED Teams: 20 kg (grey marking)

Wall Balls

  • Ensure that each throw of the ball hits the designated target accurately. For female athletes, the target’s center must be hit; for male athletes, the center above the line is the target.
  • Before initiating Wall Balls, pick up the ball from the ground and stand upright with extended hips and knees.
  • The movement involves squatting while holding the ball with both hands, then throwing the ball with both hands towards the target upon standing up. This counts as one repetition. After the ball touches the target, catch it and begin the movement again.
  • If the ball isn’t caught, pick it up from the ground and stand upright with extended hips and knees before initiating the movement.
  • In the squat’s bottom position, the hips must go lower than the knees (below 90°).
  • If necessary, the referee might use a box to ensure the squat’s depth.
  • Avoid a transition where one partner throws the ball while the other catches it in a squat position; this is not allowed.
  • A violation of any of the above-mentioned points makes the repetition invalid.

» Team Dynamics During Rest:

  • The resting partner remains within the designated area and ensures they don’t obstruct others.

Number of Repetitions and Ball Weight:

  • WOMEN: 75 reps with 4 kg (white marking)
  • MEN: 100 reps with 6 kg (grey marking)
  • MIXED Teams: 100 reps with 6 kg (grey marking)

Target Height:

  • WOMEN: 2.70 meters
  • MEN: 3.00 meters
  • MIXED Teams: 2.70 meters and 3.00 meters

8. The HYROX Penalties: No Cutting Corners

Image depicting 'Hyrox Doubles: The Penalties' section. A referee blowing a whistle, indicating enforcement of penalties during the doubles fitness competition, highlighting the importance of rule adherence

Time Penalties

  • Missing Laps: Participants who miss laps will receive a time penalty of 5-7 minutes per lap, added to their final result time. For example, if the venue penalty is 5 minutes and 2 laps are missed, the final time will be extended from 1:24hrs to 1:34hrs
  • Participants Not Running Together: Both participants must run together throughout the 1000 m distance. If one runs significantly faster, a 3-minute penalty applies due to time tracking disruption. Both participants must enter and exit workout stations together.
  • Wrong Workout Station Order: Completing workouts out of order leads to a 3-minute penalty. Completing multiple workouts out of order results in disqualification.

Distance Penalties

  • Distance penalties (5-10 meters) can be assigned for specific workouts. Decisions are made by referees in consensus with the head judge. A single warning is given per station, except for Wall Balls. A second warning invalidates the repetition and incurs the corresponding distance penalty. Multiple warnings within the station result in additional penalties.

Did Not Finish

  • Participants not completing a workout station receive no results data and are excluded from rankings and awards. They can continue the race without a final result time.

Disqualification

  • A participant disqualified by a referee won’t receive results data and is excluded from rankings and awards.

Deviations from Movement Standards

  • Any movement not adhering to standards or providing an advantage will be invalid and subject to penalties, such as invalid repetitions, time, or distance penalties.

A full list of the official Hyrox Doubles Rules can be found at here.

9. How to Register for HYROX

Steps to Get Into the Game

HYROX Doubles Team: Go to the HYROX website and click on the “Register here” button for your city. Choose your division, enter your details, and you’re set.

Individual Participation: You can also enter as a lone wolf if you prefer.

HYROX Team Relay: If two’s company but four’s a party, you can choose enter as a relay team.

10. HYROX Pre Event Briefings

A technical briefing is released before a Hyrox event and can be found on YouTube such as the one below for London 2022;

Expert Insights: Winning Strategies from a HYROX Veteran

David Magida, a North American HYROX Champion, emphasises the importance of endurance and lactate threshold for HYROX athletes. He highlights that while strength is necessary, it’s more about the ability to sustain effort over time rather than lifting super heavy.

Magida’s training involves a mix of running, machine work, and sport-specific workouts, with a focus on maintaining an intense yet sustainable work rate throughout the HYROX event.

He advises incorporating compromised running in your training to prepare for the heavy-legged feeling during the race and cautions against going out too strong at the beginning to prevent burnout.

Statistical Analysis: Compare your HYROX Doubles Split Times

You can use the below calculator to quickly compare your times to the average in each aspect of your race.

How to use the Calculator;

  • Select your Race Category from the top pull down menu, i.e. Womens Doubles
  • Enter the specific time(s) you wish to compare in the format of Mins:Secs, i.e. 4:03 and Hrs:Mins:Secs, i.e. 01:20:45 for Total Times
  • Press the Purple Calculate Button
  • Read the Ouput next to the element you are comparing.
  • If the ouput is Green, you are quicker than average by the amount of time displayed
  • If the output is red, you are slower than the average by the amount of time displayed.
HYROX Doubles Time Calculator

HYROX Doubles Time Calculator

Optimising Performance in HYROX Doubles

When tackling Hyrox Doubles, the understanding between you and your partner is the key to success. Maximise your performance by:

  • Assess Strengths and Weaknesses: Begin by evaluating both team members’ strengths and weaknesses. Allocate workout stations accordingly, ensuring the stronger partner takes on more of the challenging tasks.
  • Strategic Changeovers: Time your changeovers to maintain momentum. The switch should occur before fatigue sets in, allowing for consistent performance throughout the race.
  • Pacing is Key: Maintain a steady pace where both members can keep up. Remember, a team is only as fast as its slowest member, so pace accordingly to avoid penalties.

Advanced HYROX Training Techniques for Each Station

To excel at each Hyrox station, adopt a specialised training approach:

  • Ski Erg: Focus on powerful, full-body pulls. Incorporate interval training on the Ski Erg, alternating between high-intensity bursts and recovery periods to build endurance.
  • Sled Push/Pull: Train with weighted sleds to simulate race conditions. Practice short, high-intensity intervals to build both strength and explosive power.
  • Burpee Broad Jump: Incorporate plyometric training into your routine. Exercises like box jumps and broad jumps will improve your explosive power and efficiency for this station.
  • Rowing: Engage in both long, steady-state sessions and high-intensity intervals to increase your cardiovascular endurance and power output.
  • Functional Movements: Rotate through the specific movements you’ll encounter, such as sandbag lunges and wall balls, focusing on form and endurance.

Regularly integrate these advanced techniques into your training regimen, and you’ll find yourself better prepared not just to compete, but to excel in HYROX Doubles. Remember, consistent practice and strategic preparation are your tickets to a podium finish in HYROX Doubles. Keep pushing your limits, and the results will come.

If you’re new to HYROX try our 6 Week HYROX Training Plan for Beginners to get you started.

If you want to go a step further and write your own personalised fitness plans at the click of a button I’ve created the free and easy to use JJR Fitness Plan Generator, which utilises the power of ChatGPT AI.

Wrapping Up

So, there you have it. HYROX Doubles in a nutshell—or should I say, in a protein shake?

Follow the tips and smash your next Doubles event and feel free to come back and enter your race data into the calculator to analyses where you need to target your next training cycle.

Don’t forget to explore the huge world of ways to improve your fitness.

Whether you’re in it for the glory, the sweat, or just the sheer fun of it, HYROX Doubles has something for everyone. Now, grab the right kit and best trainers and get out there and show ’em what you’re made of!

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