Get To Know Our Ninja Warrior Coaches
Also known as Sensei, Nate is the leader of the ninja warrior coaches.
Tell us a little about yourself.
“I’m 33 years old, married, and have 3 kids. I enjoy reading, rough-housing, gardening, goofing off with my kids, taking family trips and training.
I’ve been in business since 2009, and have been coaching Ninjas since 2012. I’ve done a lot in my short time here so far, and still have a lot more to do. I was a standout wrestler in high school, served in the Marine Corps for 4 years, after that, I jumped face first into the world of MMA, which I trained for very seriously for 4 years. Ultimately, I made the decision to leave that sport and have been filling the competitive void with multiple athletic endeavors, the most recent being Ninja Warrior. I was fortunate enough to be a competitor on American Ninja Warrior 4 times, making it to the Las Vegas finals in Season 4. I’m always learning new things, and always trying to be better at everything and set a good example to my kids, coaches, and students.”
What is on your wish list for Chicago Ninja Academy in the next 5-10 years?
“I can see things going a number of different ways. We are in a very exciting time, and Ninja is growing fast, both as an entertainment program and as a sport/”lifestyle”. I hope to expand my influence by training the next generation of coaches, and growing the next generation of Ninjas through our unique style of training.”
What is your proudest moment at Chicago Ninja Academy?
“That’s a tough one! I’m super proud of everyone here. Seeing people get the call and step on the “big stage” is amazing! However, it’s the day-to-day events that really pump me up. I get super pumped when people overcome the obstacles in their minds. Trying and trying, failing repeatedly, and then after many, (sometimes MANY) attempts, achieving something that was impossible before.”
If Hollywood made a movie about your life, who would you like to see cast as you?
“Sylvester Stallone in his prime, or Keanu Reeves.”
If you could witness any historical event, what would you want to see?
“I have two: I would want to see the United States prior to colonization, and I would like to watch the Ancient Olympics.”
What places have you lived in?
“I grew up in West Chicago, I lived in Southern California for a few years, as well as spent a couple of years (combined) overseas.”
What advice do you give to new ninja warrior coaches?
“Being a Ninja Warrior coach can be one of the most rewarding jobs, but it takes a lot of practice and a lot of patience and empathy. It’s a blend of art and science.”
How did you learn about Chicago Ninja Academy?
“I found it when looking for places to train after applying to my first season of Ninja Warrior. I got my call the day after my first training session there!”
If you could interview one person (dead or alive) who would it be?
“I’d interview my Great Grandpa because all I’ve ever been told is how similar to him I am.”
What did you want to be when growing up?
“In order of what I wanted to be as i grew up:Marine biologistPaleontologistEngineerStunt man (i made it!)”
Tell us something about yourself that would surprise us?
“I was classically trained on the trumpet.”
You’re happiest when?
“I’m happiest when I make other people smile.”
What is the first thing you would buy if you won the lottery?
“2 words… Student loans… Then maybe a trip to Hawaii.”
What are three words you can use to describe Chicago Ninja Academy?
“Fun, Awesome and Cool!”
“Making the varsity wrestling team as a freshman. Never got eliminated from any sports related tournament. Coaching the next generation of Ninja Warriors!”
What do you like to do in your spare time?
“Playing sports or working out!”
If your house was burning down, what’s the one non-living thing you would save?
“My wrestling shoes.”
What is an ability you wish you had?
“Change my height at any time.”
What’s your favorite thing to do in the wonderful city of Chicago?
“See all the tourist attractions, starting with ‘The Bean.'”
“The hardest obstacle for me at the CNA, would have to be balancing a double PVC pipe on top of a balance beam!”
If you could be anyone from any time period who would it be and why?
“If I could be any person from any period, I would be Sir Charlie Spencer Chaplin. He was an amazing actor and stuntman, that really showed his true colors as well.”
If you were stuck on an island what three things would you bring?
“If I was stranded on an island, I would have a long dynamic rope, woodsman axe and a black heavy duty bag. Black bag has multi use including catching the boiling water’s steam when the bag is pitched over the water. It creates condensation, that drips off the corners and providing sterile, clean water.”
What do you like to do on your days off?
“For my free time, I love to rock climb at vertical endeavors, in red river gorge Kentucky, ninja train at the gym, cook, and play video games.”
When was the last time you laughed so hard you cried?
“The last time I laughed so hard, that I cried, was 2 weeks ago, when I accidentally failed my attempt of flipping off of a trampoline, but instead did a perfect back flop.”