Lately, we’ve been thinking about how much of the success found on American Ninja Warrior boils down to choices. Can the competitor make the right decisions in the moment to get themselves through obstacles that can be approached in a few different ways? So many historical runs are owed directly to the ability to make the right choices for that run. So we wanted to revisit a few times the “right choice” was made on the course.
A perfect example is Jessie Graff’s decision making during the Daytona City Finals in season nine.
After getting herself through the first half of the course, including the Rolling Thunder that she fell on in Qualifying, Jessie was faced with the Giant Cubes. As the commentary indicates, it had been a difficult obstacle all night.
So as Jessie inched her way around to the gap between the cubes, she was faced with a decision. The common approach was to leap between the cubes. As Jessie struggled to gain traction with her feet, she knew she didn’t have the purchase to push off with enough strength.
Right here, she made her decision. Jessie reached a leg straight back, planting her shoe against the plexiglass behind her.
Jessie knew she was flexible enough to handle this maneuver. The splits allowed her to then pivot her torso around and transfer to the second cube.
Settling in on the next part of the obstacle, Jessie looked confidently pleased that she’d made the right call.
Somehow, she then went on to complete the Circuit Board.
After tapping out on the final obstacle, Jessie placed fourth overall on the leaderboard for the night, moving herself to the National Finals once again.
When it comes to the course, the “right” choice is an incredibly personal one, as demonstrated here. Not every competitor could have made that move, just as Jessie knew the leap would have been tricky for her. Trusting herself and knowing her abilities guided that choice at the moment.
What other “right choices” should we explore over the next few days? Tell us in the comments!