American Ninja Warrior’s 12th taping season is just weeks away. The Ninjas are putting the finishing touches on their training. The obstacles, hidden away in a warehouse, are going through some of the final stages of their testing and refinement.
But the courses will be tweaked and perfected right up to each day of taping. That’s where you could come in.
At each of American Ninja Warrior’s filming locations, the course and obstacles will be tested again and again. The production crew needs willing bodies to jump up there and put the new contraptions through their paces. Testing has become wildly popular in the Ninja Warrior community and for good reason.
First, testers get on the ACTUAL course. Not only do you get a behind-the-scenes look at the show, but you can try out your training on the same thing the Ninjas will run once the cameras are on. Second, it’s an excellent way to meet fellow aspiring-Ninjas and integrate yourself into the community.
Each testing session is organized by Adam Sheldon, the show’s Challenge Producer. Understandably, he’s a pretty busy guy this time of year. If you’d like to take part in testing the American Ninja Warrior course, read on for Adam’s directions regarding how to sign up and what to expect.
(If you want to learn more about Adam and the role of Challenge Producer, check out our podcast with him!)
Just a word to the wise, if you test the course, you cannot compete in that season. Don’t sign up to test in LA if you want to try for the walk-on lottery in Washington, D.C., for example.
Email firstname.lastname@example.org and let Adam know what city you’d like to test in.
He’ll respond with a confirmation that he received your email and will keep you in the loop with details about that specific city as it approaches. Give him around three days to respond.
Adam will start sending details out for a city roughly two and a half weeks before that city’s testing dates.
That’s when he’ll email you the specific dates and times of testing, ask which dates work for you, and then schedule you in accordingly.
When your testing date gets closer, Adam will send you details on dates/times and locations.
He’ll be your main point of contact and will be keeping you up to date on the status of the testing sessions you are selected to attend.
Testing occurs roughly one to two days prior the Qualifiers and goes until the Finals for each city.
Days leading up to the Qualifier are open to all skill levels. Finals testing is more selective. They take the top Ninjas from the Qualifying testing and those Ninjas who competed in Qualifiers, but did not make it into the Finals.
Testing sessions last about two and a half to three hours. Some days, there are multiple sessions.
Testers may be asked to come to just one or they may be asked to come to all the sessions. There are no limits on how many sessions you can attend throughout the season.
Typically there are about 75-100 testers at the testing sessions.
Production tries their best to get everyone involved as much as possible and get everyone on at least one obstacle. There may be times where you get on three to four obstacles and other times where you get on zero obstacles. It all depends on the flow and what is needed on that day. Unfortunately, there are never any guarantees.
Testing takes place on the same course that the Ninjas will compete on.
So, all the obstacles will be over water. You’ll be asked to bring extra clothes and shoes so you can try the obstacle again right away if needed.
Only testers who sign up prior to testing with Adam are allowed in on testing days.
There are no spectators allowed on set during testing. There is no filming allowed. There are areas to take pictures but no video is to be recorded.