Ninja Warrior Competitor Cornel Nitache

Ninja Warrior Competitor Cornel Nitache

This month we are doing an exclusive interview and feature of our member and ninja warrior competitor Cornel Nitache.  Cornel has been a part and a member of the Chicago Ninja Academy from the very beginning of our journey!  His hard work and determination shines every time he trains at C.N.A.

Cornel was kind to sit with us and share his personal journey to this point of ninja warrior!


In Cornel’s Words

Coming To America

“I’m 45 years old; born and raised in Bucharest, Romania.  In 1996 I moved to the United States to pursue my lifelong passion for fitness; Chicago has been my home ever since.  I have been a personal trainer for 16 years during which I have inspired, motivated and changed all my clients’ fitness lives. I have competed in numerous bodybuilding contests over a period of 10 years, receiving top rankings and awards.


The Start Of Ninja Warrior

In August of 2015, I first visited Chicago Ninja Academy to try out a ninja workout.  I instantly fell in love with C.N.A. and the training atmosphere.  Nate Aye, owner and Sensei, has a passion for inspiring and motivating participants to be the best they can be. With such and amazing support from Coach

Bodybuilder and Ninja Warrior Competitor

ALIAS: Mr. Symmetry Ninja

Nate and the C.N.A. ninjas team, I decided to try out for NBC’s American Ninja Warrior season 8.


Overcoming Adversity

Unfortunately, on November 28th, 2015, while practicing and shooting footage for the ANW video submission, I tore my right arm distal bicep on a sliding pipe obstacle. That unfortunate event set me back as I needed reconstructive surgery to re-attach my ruptured bicep. The surgery took 5 weeks to be scheduled, which was at the maximum 5-week mark. While being prepped for the surgery I was informed that during my block anesthesia of my arm there was a chance that my lung could get punctured and during the re-attachment of the bicep tendon procedure.  On top of that, I was also informed that the nerves in the forearm area could get damaged. Sure enough, both of those events did occur, which made my recovery so much harder and longer.


The Best Is Yet To Come

In spite of all these setbacks and obstacles, I managed to overcome them through sheer determination, dedication, and hard work. Since I could not use my upper body, I focused on the lower body, more specifically, balance training, becoming a master of balance courses.
After 6 months after the surgery and intense rehab, I got the green light from the surgeon to resume my ninja workouts and by putting the same determination and dedication in training the upper body that I put in the balance training, I was able to build up my strength and perform ninja obstacles that I could not do before the injury.


NBC’s American Ninja Warrior show imitates life with its obstacles to be overcome. This year I am back and even stronger than before. I have submitted, along with my ninja team-mates, my video to be selected for season 9 of American Ninja Warrior. My inspiration to compete on ANW alongside my team-mates are my 11-year old twin sons, Alex and Adrian, that believed in and encouraged me to try out for the show.