Ninjas in Training
Welcome to the next installment of Ninjas in Training! The true beauty of Ninja Warrior is that it requires such a huge cross section of skill-sets, and so everyone tackles their training in a completely different way. So, we’ll be asking friends of the site to share with us their approach.
Today we’re interviewing the Wolfman and Fyfey!
Lachlan & Ben, thank you so much for this interview! Tell me, what’s the ninja training like in Brisbane? I get a heap of messages asking for training locations up north… where do you guys like to ninja up?
We’d like to think it’s as good as our imaginations can conjure. We have a group of very dedicated ninjas that we train with and are all very resourceful in utilising our natural surroundings, as well as building some pretty gnarly obstacles and equipment from basic building materials. 360 days of sunshine definitely helps!
Lachlan has his own dedicated calisthenics and ninja warrior gym that is state of the art and one of its kind in Brisbane so it’s the HO for all our regular training sessions and is home to the obstacles that we build.
The Dude Dojo YouTube channel is pretty freakin’ epic… blindfolded peg pole? It was nuts… how can you boys even top that in ep 2?
Haha yeah, Dude Dojo is a new project for us but we’ve hit the ground running and certainly given ourselves a challenge to try and top the first episode. Nothing like healthy competition and some hardcore equipment to get the group flow engaged to push each other.
The Dude Dojo concept stemmed from the Wolfpack Ninja Sessions we started up at Lachlan’s gym shortly after competing in Season 1 of Australian Ninja Warrior. We met some incredible athletes and like-minded individuals (like yourself) who were passionate to push their training and abilities to the next level. As the weeks progressed, the challenges became more elaborate (and dangerous). We soon ran out of conventional training equipment that could handle the crazy ideas we were coming up with so we started building our own.
It made sense after that to start capturing these sessions on camera and sharing them online. Not only will it help us progress and work towards being able to inspire people on an international stage, but it also promotes the ninja warrior culture that we are a part of.
The term Dude Dojo expands from the Japanese phrase Dojo which means ‘place of the way’ and is often complimentary to a temple or place of training. Put that together with a couple of passionate dudes who train hard and you have Dude Dojo.
I love that you’ve started Gravity Grips, I personally want Australia to really embrace the huge amazing awesomeness that is Ninja Warrior, and the gravity grips product line is literally perfect for training. What is the idea behind designing, sourcing and manufacturing these guys yourselves?
We couldn’t agree more. Australia has such big potential to adopt its own brand of Ninja Warrior and we can’t wait to see how it is received when the show is aired.
Naturally, being competitors on the show ourselves inspired the birth of Gravity Grips, but it’s a concept that we have both thought about for some time. While we come from different training backgrounds, our direction going forward is the same. We love that Ninja Warrior is about utilising seriously hard obstacles to make it from one point to another in the fastest and most efficient way possible. We’ve approached Gravity Grips in much the same way and knew that we needed the most kick-ass name to incorporate our philosophy:
Gravity dictates all human movement… the constant shift of body weight to change from one position to another to become faster, stronger and more efficient. To be better means to harness gravity and discover a new level of strength. What better concept than to build our range of products around than gravity itself!
Gravity Grips is very much in its infancy. We have worked very hard to improve our product to ensure it’s the best it can be, and can stand up to the furious wear and tear we throw at them. We now offer 5 sizes of Cannonballs, including the locally infamous 185mm XXL Beast ball, and two sizes of Cannon Cones and Dynamite Sticks with plenty more designs and sizes to come. There is a grip that can be incorporated into any training session in any environment now. We are stoked with the result.
We have designed, tested and manufactured everything here in Brisbane and love that we can be completely self-sufficient and as hands-on as possible. It’s perfect for quality control and means we get to interact with every ninja customer that come into contact with us! We’ve just started but can’t wait to see how far we can take it. We have a heap of new ideas and models that we want to start manufacturing and the success of Gravity Grips will help us get them out there.
What are your goals for 2017? Big year ahead?
We have some big goals for the year. Apart from working on Gravity Grips, we are very excited about the prospects of Dude Dojo and the Wolfpack sessions. It’s so interactive with other Ninjas around the world and we want to get as many people involved in it as we can. It helps our training sessions stay as inventive and constantly evolving as possible but means we get to give something back to those who are supporting us.
And of course, Season 1 of Australian Ninja Warrior will be airing and we couldn’t be more excited to see us all compete! We made some incredible friends from the show and it will very rewarding to see everyone doing what they love on TV.
Do you have any tips for new readers wanting to also train for Australian Ninja Warrior?
Change it up. Every session should incorporate a new obstacle or a new spin on the same equipment.
While we do a lot of strength training, Ninja Warrior isn’t about who is the strongest or can do the most chin ups. Some of the most challenging obstacles are all about balance, composure and sometimes luck ha!
Be uncomfortable, be challenged and be daring. If you’re not making mistakes you haven’t set the bar high enough so get out there and push yourself. No one training style is enough so adopt as many elements as you can, from rock climbing and parkour to weight training and gymnastics.
Would you share with us a workout that you like to get us Ninja Warrior ready?
For strength: 5X6 weighted chin-ups and 5X8 weighted dips twice a week… it’s the foundation of our ninja strength and we love it.
We also love pyramid sets to help get the numbers in. Start set 1 with 1 rep and increase in increments of 1 rep per set, up to 10 reps on the 10th set and then back down to 1:
- Chin ups
- Push ups
Both strength sessions are completely scalable to your level of fitness as well, so you can use the best suited weight or make any number your pyramid max and it gives you a goal to increase that weight or pyramid point next time. Or, if you want to mix it up, hang from Gravity Grips instead!
For balance: Set out some weight plates with varying distances between them and practice explosive jumps to static lands. Increase the difficulty by skipping plates, using balance boards or using your surroundings such as walls, trampolines or ropes to deflect or swing yourself off. It’s a great way to improve accuracy and balance, which always claims the most victims come Ninja Warrior competition. Reps and sets? Go until you can go no further.
We’ve spread our love out on as many social media platforms as we can maintain effectively.
Our online store is www.gravitygrips.com.au.
DudeDojo is strictly YouTube for the time being: @DudeDojo. Please get in touch with us to share any obstacle or training challenge ideas you have.
Thanks again to the Dojo Dudes for sharing their training, goals and progress. We wish them the best of luck to smash out 2017.
Please note : We can’t tell the future, we don’t know if our interviewees will actually make it onto Ninja Warrior. They are athletes that we find inspiring and hope you will too.
If you’d like to share your training routines and motivations, please contact us.
Train hard Ninjas