When it was first announced that American Ninja Warrior would include teens ages 15-18 for season 13, the chatter started. One of the big questions was: How far could these kids go?
Well, as the teens dominated in the Qualifiers, it started looking like they could go pretty far. Then Max Feinburg, 16, stepped up to the Semifinals course and became the first teen to clear it. In fact, he was one of only four finishers on the first night of the Semifinals. That also means that we can say with 100% assurance that the teens will be considered top contenders on Stage One of the National Finals.
Max is a self-declared “band geek” who loves Ninja Warrior. Here are his thoughts on how his rookie year is shaping up.
On being recognized by American Ninja Warrior
“Getting the call proved that all the training and all the work I’ve put in finally paid off. Getting recognition from the producers was amazing.”
Clearing the Semifinals
“It felt really good to be able to run (Semifinals) and be able to get through it. I struggled a lot along the way, but I made it to the end. Making it to Vegas is such a dream come true. I’ve been wanting this shot for super long.”
Getting ready for his shot at the National Finals
“To prepare for the National Finals, I’ve been doing a lot of not only physical training but mental training. I’ve been trying to study what to expect and what to think about as I’m running, and as I’m getting ready to run.
The biggest element of my training that helps me is that I focus on a lot of replicating movements on obstacles. Not quite the entire obstacle but the small movements that I see a lot. I drill those over and over until they become easy for me.”
What he expects from himself next
“I’m expecting myself to go all the way. I’ve been training this for super long now. I know I can do it. I just have to put it all together. It’s just been such a great opportunity for all of us teens to come out here and compete and hit buzzers.”
Max will get his chance to go all the way when American Ninja Warrior moves to the National Finals later in the summer.