American Ninja Warrior Training: How to Build Your Own Obstacle Course
If you want to become the next American Ninja Warrior, then you know full well the amount of preparation it will take to be ready to compete in the event. The courses in the American Ninja Warrior series, feature incredibly difficult obstacles that test your strength and determination, with each obstacle course increasing in difficulty from round to round.
To qualify and compete in the series, it takes an immense amount of strength, grit, coordination, balance, mental toughness, and more. Many seasoned athletes can't even make it past the qualifying round. However, the few that do, often have spent many years getting their bodies in shape and preparing through similar activities like gymnastics and parkour.
Yet, it can still be tough to simulate the obstacles that the American Ninja Warrior series comes up with for each of its courses. That's why some have even gone on to build their own structures to best mimic the course.
At Simplified Building, we have been in business for over 10 years now. In that time, we have seen all sorts of people use our Kee Klamp fittings to build intense obstacles and other physical structures. Many parkour gyms, and even obstacle courses such as the Spartan Race and Men's Fitness Ultimate Athlete Games, have used Kee Klamp to build their own obstacles.
In this article, we'll highlight a few structures, made with Kee Klamp, that can be built to create your own American Ninja Warrior Training Course in order to fully prepare for the event. Each of the obstacles have been used in similar courses or training and can be built on your own using Kee Klamp fittings and pipe. We'll seperate each of the structures into categories and try to showcase past stuctures that best mimic those seen on American Ninja Warrior. So let's take a look:
Since first posting this article, we have received images from one of our customers, who built their own American Ninja Warrior Training Facility. Make sure to scroll to the bottom of this article, or click here, to see their facility. They built their own Pole Grasper, Salmon Ladder, and Net Cargo Climb, among other obstacles, for their trainees to fully prepare for the event.
Balance & Coordination
The American Ninja Warrior course often starts off by putting contestants through an obstacle that tests their coordination and balance. The most popular of these is the Quad Steps:
Image Source: BodyBuilding.com
The quad steps have contestants bounce from one platform to another in a zig zag pattern. This tests the contestant's balance and coordination. The obstacle below was built by Adventure Fit, a company that puts together obstacles for the Ultimate Athlete Games. The obstacle is similar to the quad steps featured in the American Ninja Warrior obstacle course.
The frame is built using Kee Klamp fittings and pipe, while wood is attached to the frame to create the platforms that the participants have to move along. It uses a simple "A" frame design that ensures the structure is safe and secure, even with people running across it.
Image Source: Dallas News
Another obstacle that American Ninja Warrior uses to challenge contestant's balance and coordination is the cargo net climb. The cargo net climb has contestants climbing up, over, and under a cargo without falling.
Over the years, we have seen quite a few obstacle courses use cargo nets in their structures to offer a unique challenge. Below are a few examples:
In each of the above structures, Kee Klamp is used entirely to build the frame. A cargo net is then attached to the frame to complete the obstacle. Kee Klamp is great for this purpose because it is strong and durable. Even with many people on the structure at one time, it remains sturdy and is safe to use.
Upper Body & Core Strength
Another big component of the American Ninja Warrior course are the obstacles that test contestant's upper body strength, as well as their core strength.
A common obstacle that does just that are the different variations of monkey bars and jumping bars used in each of the different courses:
Monkey Bars & Jumping Bars
Image Source: IB Times
The American Ninja Warrior courses often use some variation of monkey bars or jumping bars somewhere throughout the course. The obstacle challenges the contestant's physical strength, as well as coordination. These obstacle put a ton of stress on the upper body including shoulders, upper arms, forearms, and grip strength.
Below are a few examples of monkey bars and jumping bars built using Kee Klamp:
Each of the above monkey/jumping bars were used in different obstacle races. The one directly above was used in the Spartan Race.
Again, Kee Klamp works great for these structures because of its superior strength and durability. Even with many people on the structure, it remains sturdy. Another positive to using Kee Klamp to build a structure like this is the ability to breakdown the structure. Since the structure is built using adjustable fittings, it can be disassembled and reassembled as often as you like. Something that works great for obstacle races like the Spartan Race that travels from city to city.
If those first few structures seemed a bit too elaborate, this one may be more in line with what some are you are thinking. One of our customers built this set of monkey bars to keep on their back patio. The structure is built entirely using Kee Klamp fittings and pipe making use of the 30 to 60 Degree Single Socket Tee to create the triangular supports on each end that provide extra strength to the structure.
The great thing about building something like this using Kee Klamp is that the fittings are adjustable. Since the fittings are tightened down using a set screw, it allows them to be adjusted even after assembly. This means that each of the horizontal supports used as the monkey bars could be adjusted to be closer together or farther apart. This allows the obstacle to be modified to change the level of difficulty and to practice for different situations.
Rope Climb & Pole Grasper
Image Source: Starr Cards
The pole grasper, and the rope climb, are both popular American Ninja Warrior obstacles that put immense pressure on a contestant's upper body strength. In the pole grasper, contestants try to hold onto a pole that is suspended above the ground and then have to swing from one pole to the next. In the rope climb, contestants have to climb a rope up to the top of some platform. This obstacle is usually very tall making it very tiring. Both obstacles put tremendous pressure on the shoulders, upper arms, forearms, and grip strength.
While we don't exactly have any direct comparisons, we have seen a few obstacles built with Kee Klamp that are similar and could be used to mimic the obstacle.
Below, we see an obstacle in which participants have to climb up the structure along one pipe. However, it could also be used to swing from pole to pole much like the pole grasper seen on American Ninja Warrior. And because the structure utilizes the Single Socket Tee, the distance between each of the vertical poles could be changed to make the obstacle more difficult.
Here's another obstacle, while not completely similar to the pole grasper or rope climb, does offer a unique challenge that could help to prepare for those obstacles. This obstacle was built by Adventure Fit for the Ultimate Athlete Games. Participants have to climb the rope ladder and then descend from the structure by going down the pole next to each ladder.
Here are a few other obstacles that, while there are no direct comparisons to some seen in the American Ninja Warrior, offer a unique challenge that could help hopeful participants prepare for the course:
While some of these obstacles may seem elaborate and out of reach, that is not the case. Kee Klamp makes it possible to build your own obstacles, or even obstacle courses, without needing any prior building experience or expensive tools to put the structures together. On top of that, since the structures are built using adjustable fittings, they can be expanded upon. Meaning you could always change or add onto your obstacle in the future, making it possible for you to start small if necessary.
If you're interested in building your own obstacle but aren't quite sure where to start, we offer free design assistance to help your creation come to life. Also, be sure to check out our projects area for more ideas. We have a host of other blog posts on parkour structures and obstacle race structures to help spark your imagination.