Fitness Training

Obstacles part of ‘Ninja’ duo’s business plan

Tina Dettman-Bielefeldt, For USA TODAY NETWORK-Wisconsin
Published eight:04 a.m. CT Aug. 1, 2017 | Updated eight:20 a.m. CT Aug. 1, 2017

While most entrepreneurs attempt to take away any obstacles to beginning a business, ninja warriors Drew Knapp and Luke Chambers are planning to succeed by creating them.

The Suamico residents and finalists in Season 9 of “American Ninja Warrior” are collaborating on the opening of a ninja fitness center on American Drive in De Pere. Knapp is the business proprietor and Chambers is operations supervisor. The health club might be referred to as Warrior Jungle (

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Knapp, who began competing on “American Ninja Warrior” 5 years in the past, is wanting ahead to making use of his huge expertise in gymnastics, mountaineering, parkour (the artwork of motion) and calisthenics training to assist youngsters and adults attain their fitness objectives.

“This is functional fitness training,” Knapp stated. “We’re offering the atmosphere and bringing a new and unique service to this area and Wisconsin. Warrior Jungle will give you the opportunity to work on your overall fitness. You will learn to climb, jump and do more than you ever could in ways you never thought possible. Plus, it is a lot of fun and you don’t feel like you’re working out.”

Chambers agrees with the enjoyable issue and believes the health club may have a large attain.

“The cool thing is that people will travel for this,” Chambers said. “We used to travel to Minnesota just to train and other people would tell us that they would travel for hours to get there. If you build it, people will travel to get there.”

The location in De Pere, slated to open within the fall, was chosen for its proximity to the whole northeastern Wisconsin area. The health club can be about 6,000 sq. ft with 25 ninja warrior obstacles. The obstacles will change regularly to maintain the course fascinating and add new challenges. There can be courses for all ages.

“The good thing is that both kids and adults can participate,” Knapp stated. “We want kids to learn proper technique and help them learn and grow. For classes, we’ll start early in the morning to target the fitness base of people who work out in the morning. Typically, our big hours will be in the late afternoon and early evening when students are out of school and people leave work.”

There may even be birthday and different events, company outings, area journey packages and private training. The concept is to make the fitness center practical and social.

“We want this to be more of a community,” Knapp said. “There will be member events and get-togethers to grow the social aspect and build a family. People want to come in and get strong but it makes it so much more worthwhile when you’re part of something.” 

Chambers will work on the advertising facet to make that occur. With a business main from the University of Wisconsin-Green Bay, his expertise embrace the operational elements whereas Knapp considers imaginative and prescient and management to be his strongest expertise. With no expertise in operating a business, Knapp hung out with mentors from the Small Business Development Center, one of SCORE’s companions, to put in writing a business plan.

He stated, “Numbers and projections were the hardest thing for me, and that took the most energy to write up. With everything else, I had a clear idea of what I wanted to do.”

As the ultimate items fall into place, each are excited for the opening and the prospect to encourage and practice others. Their mission assertion is, “Dedicated to making fitness fun.”

Their unconventional strategy to fitness was apparent when requested what a single, greatest exercise may be.

“Probably tree climbing,” they stated. “But, the biggest thing is just starting. It takes courage to say, ‘I’m going to do this.’”

Tina Dettman-Bielefeldt is co-owner of DB Commercial Real Estate in Green Bay and previous district director for SCORE, Wisconsin.

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