• Hometalk Helper
  • Northfield, OH

DIY Backyard American Ninja Warrior Course - Summer Fun!

4 Materials
2 Days

My son, who is almost 9, has been obsessed with, and has been training for, American Ninja Warrior since he was about 3 years old. When we moved to our new house, with a huge back yard, surrounding woods and a wrap around deck, we new a diy course was in the works! He used this for a birthday party, and it was a huge hit with his friends. The obstacles always stay up (except the rope one, we take that down and put it back up as needed), and all of my kids' friends (even my daughters and their friends) love to come over and run the course!
diy backyard american ninja warrior course summer fun
The first build for the course were the 'Quad Steps'. These were made for free with wood pallets. You can get any type of pallet from a business for free, and break it down and then use the wood to build the steps. I happened to find four small, sturdy pallets that were perfect for this as is. All we had to do was fill in any spaces by nailing in extra slats taken from scrap wood or other pallets for the tops (you can see one top is just reinforced with a square piece of scrap wood. The legs are just screwed onto the back using thicker scrap wood pieces so that the steps set at an angle as you can see above.

For the signs for each obstacle, I just printed out the sign on my printer (I made them myself in Word). I glued them to pieces of cardboard, cut slits into them and wrapped them with string onto sturdy sticks that were hammered into the ground.

diy backyard american ninja warrior course summer fun
The next obstacle mimics the flying nunchucks and cannonball alley. This old wooden swingset frame was in the yard when we bought the house. We bought the hanging balls and the nunchucks on Amazon.com and hung them. My daughters recently added the tires (which you will see below were originally a tire pull).
diy backyard american ninja warrior course summer fun
This is our version of the ball crossing. We had recently cut down some dead trees in our yard. So, my husband cut chunks and we dug holes in the ground and placed these in.
diy backyard american ninja warrior course summer fun
This is one of the large trunks we cut down. The kids had to jump it and it was the entrance to a jungle run we made through our entire woods that circle around the house. My husband mowed and trimmed a path about 75 feet long that wound up and down hills through our woods.
diy backyard american ninja warrior course summer fun
We have gorgeous decking that wraps all the way around the left side of our house, connected from our back deck to our front porch. So the rope crawl was an easy obstacle to construct. This one is pretty self explanatory!
diy backyard american ninja warrior course summer fun
One of the last obstacles (the last one involved some basketball skill work in the driveway), was a tire pull. I called up the repair place we use for our vehicles and asked if I could get some old tires from them. Most car repair shops have to pay to get rid of these, so they love giving them away for free!

This continues to be one of the highlights of our summer fun, for the kids and their friends. They have even filled up their water guns and used the course as part of playing an intricate game of water gun wars!
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4 of 10 comments
  • This is absolutely awesome! One of my dogs would be running and competing with the kids. How magical for them, love that they are outside, running, jumping, playing instead of in front of a computer - while a necessary skill, there is plenty of time for that. Keep them outdoors, they will be healthy for life. Thanks for being such fantastic parents. 🤗

  • Syg17540297
    on Jul 1, 2018

    Your children are very lucky to have you. What a wonderful backyard! Let the games begin!

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