American Ninja Warrior: the true test of superhuman capability

Mount Midoryama in its full glory.

Mount Midoryama in its full glory.

Sandy Hutchins, Sports Editor

American Ninja Warrior has been an ongoing obstacle course since 2009. This show and its courses have evolved over these nine seasons. The goal of this competition is to successfully complete all three courses in order to get to the 4th stage of Mount Midoryama. This final stage is a truly daunting task. It is a 75 foot rope climb that the contestant must be able to complete under 30 seconds. The award for completing this final course was originally $500,000 but was bumped up to $1 million in season 7. This season, as luck would have it, actually ended up being the first in 7 seasons to have a winner; in fact, it had two winners, Isaac Caldiero and Geoff Britten. Geoff was able to finish this monumental task with only one second remaining, but Isaac completed the climb in a faster time so while Geoff was the first American to ever win the course, Isaac came home with the money.

Over the years this course has changed in its obstacles to provide increasingly difficult courses. In the recent season, season 9, several new additions were made that resulted in no one being able to complete the course this year. As the contestants got close to the end of the course they encountered obstacles that they had never experienced or even seen others attempt. One of these new obstacles was a sort of sick twist on monkey bars where you must transfer two rings from post to post while hanging to move across it.

This show has become a national phenomenon as now the contestants have begun to craft their own home courses to practice on and 3rd party training facilities have opened up. These have helped as every year more and more contestants make it through. This explains why the show has had to change things up and make it harder. They say they have their own facility to come up with and perfect new obstacles for every season, so obviously they plan to stay for plenty more seasons.