The Ninja Warriors TV Show is a program aired in the US and 17 other countries originally based off of a game show that is filmed in Japan. The rules of the show are rather simple, one-hundred people attempt to complete an obstacle course, and whomever wins is crowned the a Ninja Warrior, though in the history of the game show only 3 people have ever completely finished the challenge.
The show itself is a marathon just to watch as each competition is broadcast in six 30 minute segments, or a competition lasting 3 hours! The game is split into four different challenge segments, each with different physical obstacles that must be passed to continue to the next. The game show separates itself from most others due to the intense physical requirements needed to advance through the stages, and there is never any guarantee that competitors will even make it past the first stage!
Each year, the obstacles in the course are rotated, so past years competitors do not have an unfair advantage over new ones but the types of challenges presented to the Ninja Warrior are always the same - nearly impossible! While there are far too many to mention in this post, below you'll see descriptions of some of the most popular challenges, and why!
Step Slider: This challenge appears rather simple, but it requires excellent balance and leg power to complete. The participant leaps from a platform and lands with one foot against a broad platform at a 45% angle. They must then use their momentum to 'jump' to another platform with their other leg. Many competitors are not even able to pass this, just the first challenge!
Ultimate Cliffhanger: This challenge has been improved over the years, and considered by many to be the most difficult of the entire Ninja Warrior challenge. Competitors must rely completely on upper body strength, and impossible grip to cross a gap of water. The obstacle consists of a series of small ledges (only a about 2 and 1/2 inches across) that the competitor must grip with their finger tips. These ledges are not connected and as a result contestants must swing to each, often times relying only on the grip and strength of a few fingers to support their weight. The cliffhanger challenge has been improved upon three times, and in its current stage known as the 'Ultimate Cliffhanger' no challenger has ever been able to cross.
The fourth and final stage of the Ninja Warrior is the last attempt at the creators of the series to beat the contestants. Of all competitors who have ever attempted the Ninja Warrior challenge, only 23 have made it to the final stage. Of those 23, only 3 have ever completed it. The final stage has had three different forms over the years, but it is essentially a climb to the top of a tower where a button must be pressed before time expires. The various types of climbs include a 66 ft rope climb within 40 seconds, the "Heavenly Ladder" (or rope ladder) combined with a rope climb totaling 75 feet within 40 seconds. Or a spider climb and rope climb totaling 74 feet within 30 seconds. For those who complete the competition, victors are considered on Ninja Warrior to have achieved Total Victory, most likely the most difficult title one could ever achieve!