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AG Ninja’s Newest Obstacles

Releasing new obstacles is always an exciting thing for me. Seeing them go from a 3D mockup to hanging from someone’s Katana Frame provides such a sweet satisfaction.

Here are the latest releases from AG Ninja:

The Revolver

Price: $1175

Difficulty: Advanced Ninja

Age Range: Teen – Adult

Material: Powder Coated Steel

Body Parts Worked: Biceps, triceps, back, shoulder, grip strength

ninja-Obstacle-the revolver

You’ve seen the rumbling dice and the rotating spindle. Now comes The Revolver. This unique obstacle combines a myriad of challenges that will test the will power of the best athletes. Similar to the rumbling dice, one must do a pull/push motion with both arms on the Revolver rungs to get the heavy piece moving. However, The rungs of this obstacle provide their own challenge as they increase in thickness. Yes, thicker definitely means more difficult!

If you already have rails for a Rumbling Dice, you have the option of purchasing the Revolver as a stand alone obstacle.

 

The Wishbone

Price: $315 ea.

Difficulty: Advanced Ninja

Age Range: Teen – Adult

Material: Powder Coated Steel, polyurethane grips

Body Parts Worked: Biceps, triceps, back, shoulder, grip strength

 

It’s hard enough when an obstacle rotates on you, but when it swings and rotates, you have a problem on your hands. The athlete will get to test grip strength, upper body strength, core and the lechè skills with this obstacle. The wishbone is made of a powder coated steel and will include cannon balls on the ends to assist with the grip.

 

The Tic Toc Bag

Price: $795

Difficulty: Beginner/Intermediate

Age Range: 5 to Adult

Material: Vinyl padding, Powder Coated Steel, plastic base

Body Parts Worked: Biceps, Calfs, Quads

 

ag_ninja-tic_toc

The Tic Toc bag provides a great deal of fun and versatility. A common use is to release from another obstacle and bear hug the bag and fight to hold on as it sways back and forth. So, you will often see a trapeze placed before this obstacle to get some high flying excitement. The soft padding is quite forgiving with it’s 2ft diameter and vinyl covering. The plastic base provides some needed support for foot placement.  The obstacle is about 7.5ft tall and 3ft wide

 

The Cobra

Price: $775

Difficulty: Intermediate

Age Range: 8 to Adult

Material: Powder Coated Steel

Body Parts Worked: Biceps, back

The_Cobra_ninja_Obstacle

Like a slithering Cobra, this obstacle rolls up and down and finishes with a climb to the raised head. Participants simply walk their hands along the back of The Cobra and try their best to avoid the venom! This obstacle works upper body and grip strength and would be considered intermediate level. Included are the rolling poles, mounting sticks and hardware.

 

The Flying Monkey

Price: $675 ea.

Difficulty: Intermediate/Advanced

Age Range: 12 to Adult

Material: Powder Coated Steel, Plastic Veneer

Body Parts Worked: Biceps, back, abs

Flying_Monkey_ninja_Obstacle

One of the newest obstacles added to the AG Ninja arsenal not only brings excitement in it’s functionality, but it’s also beautifully crafted with a lot of attention put in to the design.  Outside of creating obstacles that are safe and professionally engineered, we really want to focus on designing items that look great. The Flying Monkey does not disappoint!

One of the more popular obstacles from the TV show, the Flying squirrel allows the athletes to get HUGE air while swinging from one to the next. In a structured obstacle training environment, the flying squirrel can be used for a massive age range in that it’s great for training taps/correct swing and release techniques.

When used in a course running environment, this would be considered a high level obstacle for very experienced athletes

Brad Thornton

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Sport Obstacle Highlight – The Flying Rings

Flying_Rings

No, we certainly don’t have a shortage of “Flying” obstacles. Can you blame us? Who doesn’t like to soar through the air, reaching for a bar, a pipe, rings, whatever? You miss, you land on a big soft resi or in a foam pit. Fun times. I literally spend a good 30 minutes each day just trying to think up different new flying obstacles. So, in comes the flying rings!

We’ve been offering this one for a while but we haven’t really given them their fare share of attention. The obstacle is personally one of my favorites and I often try to encourage clients to consider them. Yes, they appear to be difficult, but once again, like many of our obstacles, there are a number of ways to use them.

First off, if you watch the show, the obstacle is designed a little differently then what you might expect. Instead of tethering the rings and having the athlete essentially jungle swing from rung to rung, we kept the rings free. In addition, we went with pairs of hooks and rings instead of singles. So, this requires one to swing with both rings in hand and lechè over and loop on to a set of hooks with the rings. Not only does this require body control and precise technique, but it also really brings in the element of mental focus . Once you have launched yourself in to the air, you now have to hone in on these small hooks and stay completely focused on them so that you have a shot at latching on to them with your rings.

“Wait!” you say…”That sounds hard!”

It is! But there are many ways to make it more Ninja novice friendly

  1. With your youngsters, you can slide the rungs closer together and use the obstacle as more of a ring toss. In other words, the athlete is still hanging from one ring on a peg as they are reaching for the peg across from it.
  2. You can also start them out on swings only while holding on to both rings – working the proper tapping technique and getting accustomed to the grip strength required to hold on with the extra force from the swing. From there, the athlete can ease in to a swing and release everything all together (including the ring), landing on a resi or in a pit. Next, they can release with ring in hand, learning to get it up and over the bend in the rung. And so on.
  3. The rungs are designed in such a manner to also allow your athletes to use a bar in lieu of the rings if needed. A bar will be easier in that it requires a little less precision than the rings. So you can have them perfect this before graduating to the rings.

If your more experienced Ninjas need an extra challenge, space the rungs further apart or have them perform the obstacle with one ring only (both hands on one ring). Have them face the opposite direction when they begin so that they have to turn 180 degrees mid air to make the catch. So many ways to do it!

Remember, obstacles like the flying rings can put your athletes in extremely vulnerable positions (including upside down!). It is important to mat appropriately. With obstacles such as this, you will want to go thicker on the safety mat than you would with say a monkey bar at the same height.

Train safely and email with questions or comments. Below is a quick video showing the flying rings.

 

Brad Thornton

Brad@american-gymnast.com

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Sport Obstacle Highlight – The Flying Squirrel

Flying_Squirrel_Obstacle_2

One of the newest obstacles added to the AG Ninja arsenal not only brings excitement in it’s functionality, but it’s also beautifully crafted with a lot of attention put in to the design.  Outside of creating obstacles that are safe and professionally engineered, we really want to focus on designing items that look great. Let’s face it, when your customers walk in to your facility, you want them to take one look at your equipment and think “whoa, that is really nice!” No doubt, this was achieved with the release of the Flying Squirrel.

If you haven’t seen the show, you may not be familiar with this Ninja Obstacle. The mechanism you see in the photo above works in conjunction with a second one to create a swinging obstacle that allows you to act like…well, just like it’s name.

 

Flying_Squirrel_Obstacle_2

 

Generally, a series of these are lined up so the athlete can fly from one set of bars to the next. Obviously, this sounds like a high level obstacle, and normally I would categorize it as such when used in a conventional manner. However, sometimes you have to think differently of the products we offer. It’s important to see how each of them can be used as a training tool and not necessarily a means to getting from one side of a frame to another.

In a structured obstacle training environment, the flying squirrel can be used for a massive age range. Now, if it is being placed on a course type environment where kids are simply trying to mow through a series of obstacles then it is limited to a more skilled level.

For example, before kids can learn how to release a bar and grab another, it is imperative they learn a proper swing/tap first. The flying squirrel apparatus is a fun way for kids to practice this swing and even swing and release and drop in to a pit or large resi. We even have options with this obstacle to allow the arms to operate independently of one another (more difficult) or connected to each other (easier).

I love this obstacle and know that it provides a variety of ways to teach body control, coordination, strength, confidence etc. The sensation of one day flying is appealing for kids and adults so I promise you can’t go wrong by including these in your curriculum.

 

If you have any questions or need details, feel free to to email me at Brad@american-gymnast.com

 

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Sport Obstacle Highlight – The Flying Bar Trainer

flying_bar_trainer

While it’s great to have all of the high flying, exciting obstacles you see on the TV show, it’s also important to remember the little novice Ninjas just starting out. No doubt, most of them want to immediately hop up on a salmon ladder or give the 14ft warped wall a go, but obviously that’s not exactly realistic. Of course, there will also be many youngsters that may walk in to your facility and see some of these towering obstacles and get intimidated right from the start.

A great way to alleviate some of the fears of the timid ones and keep the interest of the more ambitious little ninjas is to have a good selection of obstacles that mimic the popular ones but are scaled down to be more of a trainer obstacle. It is important for your program to be unique and consistently varied. But more importantly, you should have trainer obstacles where your younger athletes can learn proper technique in preparation for the show level obstacles.

One example of a popular obstacle that is appealing to kids of all ages is the Flying Bar. Considering the big air and large gaps the athlete has to cross with this obstacle, it is not one for the squeamish. A miss here and it’s a long fall to the ground. This is definitely a high level obstacle that is meant for properly trained ninjas. But, what if the little ones could do something similar that has the same technique but on a much smaller scale?

That’s exactly what our very own Flying Bar Trainer does. Give your novice ninjas some peace of mind knowing there aren’t any huge gaps to cross where they can potentially plummet 10ft. This innovative obstacle allows them to practice the same tap and body movement as the original flying bar, but the solid piece keeps them on the apparatus and keeps their spirits high. Challenge them as they progress by having them hop multiple ridges.

Check out some athletes working out on the FBT:

 

See more info on the Flying Bar Trainer and other unique obstacles here

Brad Thornton

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Sports Obstacle Highlight – The Unstable Monkey Bars

This SpOTlight video highlights the AG Ninja Unstable Monkey Bars obstacle.  Monkey Bars are a great exercise for grip strength, arm and shoulder development and hand-eye coordination.  More challenging than your typical playground monkey bars, the “unstable” front-to-back and side-to-side movement requires the athlete to maintain a greater focus while navigating from one end to the other.

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Sports Obstacle Highlight – The Floating Discs

One of the trickier things that comes with designing a Ninja Setup for a client is providing a course that will cover a broad age range and skill level. The majority of people we are designing for have kids that range in age from 4 to 15. So, creativity becomes essential in the design process.

We have to consider 3 main things

  1. It must be fun and safe for the younger kids
  2. It must be fun, safe, yet challenging for the older kids
  3. The course must fit within the client budget

Of course, we could simply recommend a number of our obstacles to keep on hand to swap in and out on the Katana Frame. While it is nice to have additional obstacles so you can keep the course fresh, sometimes this does not work with the budget. So we have to constantly think of ways to be creative with obstacles so they may be used in a number of ways by different age groups.

With all of these thoughts in mind, we created the Hanging Disc obstacle. We wanted to see how we could transform our floating pole obstacle (which the young kids love) to something that the older kids would enjoy as well. Our Floating poles look like the image below:

This is a fun obstacle but there is only one way to use it. So, we decided to shorten the pole to about 15 inches and do a rope connection for the remaining length. This allows us to do the floating poles as well as the very challenging high floating discs. The below photos show the difference between the two:

Low Discs:

 

Then these low discs can easily be transformed to the high discs by eliminating the rope:

 

 

 

All of a sudden, this becomes one challenging Ninja obstacle! You get two obstacles in one and everybody is happy! You can see more of our sport obstacles here. 

Email Brad@american-gymnast.com for any questions regarding Ninja or to see about our design services

 

Brad Thornton

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Sports Obstacle Highlight – The Warped Wall

10ft_Premium_warped_Wall

Are you ready to beat that wall? We offer 2 types of Warped Walls – Premium and Basic – and several different sizes to choose from for Sports Obstacle Training. This SpOTlight Video shows different age athletes trying to scale our 10′ high Warped Wall.  This should give you a good indication of which size Warped Wall(s) you should consider for your Ninja Training Programs.

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Sports Obstacle Highlight – The Slanted Steps

Slanted_Steps

Some version of the slanted step has been around Ninja Warrior since the beginning. It’s one of those obstacle you just have to have. Our Slanted Steps are custom made out of high quality wood, painted to the color of your choice and come with a gripped surface to prevent any slipping on the step. Each step has velcro on the underside which adheres perfectly to carpet bonded foam.  This SpOTlight Video shows 3 different age athletes demonstrating 3 different techniques, varying from Beginner to Advanced, for navigating across the Slanted Steps.

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Sports Obstacle Highlight – The Unstable Bridges

Low_Unstable_Bridge

One of the staples for Ninja obstacles are the Unstable Bridges  The low hanging wood or plexiglass planks dangle from sling hardware causing motion in all directions as soon as you step on them. The ninja must carefully scale across the plank while attempting to keep their weight distributed in the center of the board. Then comes the true test of leaping to board number two!  The gap between the two bridges can be varied to increase or decrease the difficulty of the obstacle.

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Sports Obstacle Highlight – The Devil’s Bridge

Ninja Training Sport Obstacle - Devil's Bridge

A major objective of our AG Ninja brand is to design products that are not only fun and challenging, but also have versatility. Whats better than buying one ninja obstacle that can function like three and also covers a variety of skill levels? After all, we all want to get our money’s worth when making large purchases, right?

Our newest obstacle, The Devil’s Bridge, is a great example of a multi purpose Ninja Obstacle. We looked at several of our popular Ninja Obstacles and tried to come up with ways to combine them so our our customers don’t have to make unnecessary multiple purchases as their Ninjas progress and require more challenges.

The Devil’s Bridge is a blend of 3 different obstacles:

Ninja Training Sport Obstacle - The Unstable Bridge

The Unstable Bridge


Ninja Training Sports Obstacle - The Devil's Ladder

The Devil’s Ladder


Ninja Training Sports Obstacle - The Monkey Bars

The Monkey Bars


The Result:

Ninja Training Sport Obstacle - Devil's Bridge

The Devil’s Bridge

The Devil’s Bridge is a great obstacle to have on hand if you have broad age range training on your Ninja rig. Here is an example difficulty progression based on varying the configuration of the obstacle.

Beginner

The simplest configuration of the obstacle is designed to function as a set of split, flat monkey  bars. Since each section is hanging from a chain, the obstacle will have some movement, making it more difficult than a standard set of monkey bars. This configuration can be hung low for new ninjas and can slowly be raised as the ninjas progress to add the element and excitement of height. You can also steadily increase the gap between the two sections, allowing for a greater reach.

Intermediate

After a few months of training, your ninjas are going to be ready for a new challenge. Fortunately, the Devil’s Bridge can easily be converted in to an intermediate obstacle – the Devil’s Ladder. This is done simply by reducing hardware on one end of the ladder and increasing the incline. The result will look like this:You can start off with just a slight incline and steadily increase it as the athletes advances.Even decline the ladders if you wish …Advanced

Finally, your advanced athletes can use this obstacle as the unstable bridge. The outside planks of the ladders are a wide wood surface, allowing the athlete to grasp hold and hop along the edge and then do a swing, release and hop to the second ladder.If your athletes master this, then increase the gap between the two bridges …Still not difficult enough?  Stagger the heights between the two bridges to create a more difficult transition.

Sport Obstacle Ninja Training - Devil's Bridge 7
So you can you can get really creative with this obstacle, creating a number of different challenges for your athletes. The key to success with your classes is to keep things fresh and exciting so your kids never know what to expect each time they come in. We are constantly brainstorming on ideas for unique obstacles so keep an eye out on the AG Ninja product page for new additions.

To order this Ninja training obstacle, see the product page here: The Devil’s Bridge