World qualifier for Canadian Ninja League in Sudbury
The Apex Warrior gym in Sudbury was selected as one of four gyms in Canada to host a world qualifier for the National Ninja League.
"It’s a huge deal for us to be able to run something like this and it’s a huge deal for the athletes to be able to come here. Most of them came from out of town so it’s a really big deal for us to be able to put something on like this," said Dennis Legeault, Apex Warrior gym owner.
Legeault says the top three athletes in each category will qualify for the worlds which are set to take place sometime between June and July 2022 in New Jersey. Almost 100 athletes from age 6 to over 40 took to the course over the weekend.
"It was actually a pretty insane course it was like the hardest course we’ve ever done from like my gym. It’s amazing to see," says Alison Ropp, a competitor from Hamilton.
"We have little kids at our gym that are my knee height and then we have our masters like Marcelo like over 40 its amazing. Guys, girls, any age, any height and weight anything,”
Despite athletes taking to the course solo all those involved say Ninja competitors truly are one big community.
"The sports all about community engagement and just being one together its never about you versus the course its about all of us versus the course so its great to see how we all support each other regardless whether you win or loose," says Hikmat Hallak, Competitor.
Legeault says since opening his gym 3 years ago he has noticed a steady increase in interest in the sport over the years.
"Everybody is starting to see how fun it is to train for this stuff and what a cool sport it is. It’s an amazing community.The training is different then everything else," he said.
"You get extremely fit and you’re having fun at the same time right we call this like an adults play ground because we just get to swing and play but then you realize that you’re sore in all these different areas of your body that you’ve never really used before.”
Legeault adds that this is the first in person competition in almost two years that the gym has hosted. Since COVID began all events have be held virtually.