News · Training

Controversy Ensues in the Ninja World…

…or Not

With the current landscape, as ANW is today (and being the gold standard for now), I would argue the format is best suited for a rock climber.  Nothing against rock climbers, they are beasts!  But, what if the format shifted to include a more balanced obstacle course that equally challenges lower body as it does upper body?

Hmmm…Think on that for a second or two.

Okay, back to the article!

For sake of argument (again) if this change happened or if leagues that are Ninja Obstacle Course leagues started this change, what athlete would be best at this new way of getting your Ninja on?  Cross-training in multiple disciplines and skill sets might have the best effect, so not one way or method would dominate – a coordinated and complimentary method of training.

But, what would this method of training look like?  What would that training method include at the most and at the least?  What training method with the most carry-over in addition to actually working Ninja Obstacle Course?

Lower Body Strengthening workouts

Welcome are guest contributor – Charles Mitchell, Manager of Ninja Park/Co-owner of UNAA.

“As the sport of Ninja Warrior/NOC has begun to mature, it has begun to favor upper body strength and endurance. So in light of this, it’s easy in our training to neglect the other essential components such as balance and lower body strength. Here are three exercises that highlight importance in my lower body training.

Plyometrics- Pretty much jumping from a running head start, standing still, or even walk up plyometrics are going to really increase your lower body performance, and the synergy of your body movements.

You watch those who do well with this exercise, there entire body moves in one swift motion. You can add a smaller platform or unstable platform to increase the balancing element.

Precision Jumps- I am taking this one straight out of the Parkour handbook. Precisions are ideal practice for control, and explosiveness. In plyometrics you will have time to line up the jump. With precision’s you should set up multiple small surfaces, and begin bounding across them. You will begin to have a second nature as to where to place your feet. As you get it down, make the surfaces smaller, and further away to increase the difficulty. Key foot placement and body control gained from this exercise will give you the edge on lower body obstacles.

Jumping Spider- This is a two part, one get familiar with a mini-tramp, it’s part of the sport and we will only continue to see its application grow. If you feel comfortable hitting multiple distances, and heights with the tramp you are getting close to where you want to be. Two, the jumping spider is amazing because it challenges our flexibility.  Smaller frames must adjust to the distance between walls by using flexibility, and lower body strength. If you are fortunate enough to have a Jumping Spider where the walls bow in towards one another, challenge yourself by hitting the jump sooner, while the walls are still bowing in. If you can hit the splits on it, you have reached the pinnacle”.

Charles Mitchell

Lead Official/COO





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