Obstacle Academy Athlete Community at OCRWC in Blue Mountain, Canada
The Obstacle Course Racing World Championships (OCRWC) have come and gone. For many OCR Athletes, myself included, this is the biggest event of the season. It is the pinnacle of a full year of training and many qualifying races. Obstacle Academy’s owner Sarah Schoback and it’s two OCR coaches; Josh Rundquist and Rebecca DeCamp, all made the trip to Blue Mountain, Canada and succeeded in one of the highest honors in OCR - keeping their bands at the OCRWC.
Eight athletes who have attended at least one training session at Obstacle Academy made the trip to the OCRWC. I reached out to some of them to gain some insight as to how they felt training at Obstacle Academy has helped to supplement or improve their already vigorous training regimen.
“In the short amount of time that I have trained at Obstacle Academy, my obstacle proficiency has gone through the roof. The biggest example of this was the Rig at the OCRWC. This year was my third trip to the OCRWC. In 2015 I tried the Rig at least 10 times before successfully completing it, and it took me even longer in 2014. This year I confidently ran up to the Rig and did not require the time to study the obstacle before I tackling it. I was able to work my way through it without hesitation, and in a single attempt! I continued on and completed every obstacle in both the individual and the team competitions. Something I had not been able to do in past years.
This is just one example of how the high caliber athletes and coaches at Obstacle Academy has helped improve my performances at Obstacle Course Races! Obstacle Academy is a great community of athletes where everyone comes together with their knowledge and experiences to collaborate to enable everyone to improve and progress towards achieving their individual goals.”
-Josh Rundquist, Obstacle Academy OCR Coach
“Overall, I am way stronger and understand the technique on the obstacles 100 percent more than I would have if I had not attended Obstacle Academy's OCR training classes. One example is the 8 foot walls – I never was able to get those until I was taught the technique at Obstacle Academy. More importantly, it connected me to people who are doing the same thing and that I can look to for guidance and support. Never would have gone to OCRWC if it weren’t for all of you guys and gals. However, I feel I am just starting out and really have something to baseline my performance off of for next year.”
-Elizabeth Kettler, OCR Athlete
“I think a huge part of obstacle completion has to do with where your confidence level is at.
When I began going to the OCR conditioning class coached by Rebecca DeCamp, her overall knowledge of what we would see at the Word Championships and how to train for them was perfect for me. Every week she would ask how we wanted to set up the rig and what we may want to specifically work on while also offering her own advice on what I should do to get better in and outside of the Ninja Warrior gym.
While I was not able to complete every obstacle at the OCRWCs I'm confident I was physically capable of doing them and with further endurance training I will succeed at completing all the obstacles next year! The Platinum Rig at Worlds was the most difficult one I’ve completed at any race, and I got through it in one attempt.
In the end, I feel I have a great foundation to build on and secured the confidence of knowing how to attack any obstacle I would see at an Obstacle Course Race. I’m grateful for the part that the coaches at The Obstacle Academy played in my training and look forward to continuing to improve!”
-Chris Ferguson, North Star Spartans OCR Group Founder & OCR Athlete
“Where do I start? When I did my very first OCR, Battle Frog; my hands were baby soft and by the end of the race they were ripped and bleeding. I couldn’t close my hands for a week! I had no grip strength. After two months of training with everyone at Obstacle Academy, I could climb the rope, complete the rings, get over the 8 foot wall and learned techniques to complete the monkey bars. Pretty much everything! Then Coach Josh spent 45 min with me on the warped wall and I almost got it! A couple more sessions and I know I’ll get it!
At the OCRWC I completed all the rope obstacles, which I never could have done before. I also got the walls, the monkey bars, and Skull Valley! In the team race, I was the first leg, the speed leg, and I completed every obstacle on my leg and had our team in third place when I came down the hill. One thing that sticks out in my mind is that it was raining that morning and one of my obstacles was Savage Race’s Pipe Dream. It was all wet and my grip strength got me across that pipe. I couldn’t have done that two months ago! Plus I had to do the Dragons Back and again, the pipes were dripping wet and I was able to complete it. No way I that I could have done that in June! I could go on and on, literally Josh, you name an obstacle and I couldn’t have done it before I started training with you guys! “
-Darla O’Connor, OCR Athlete
The general consensus seems to be that immersing yourself in the community that is being built at Obstacle Academy will be a great addition to your life. Whether it is gaining friendships by meeting others that share your interest in Obstacle Course Racing, or by increasing your ability to cruise through technical obstacles on OCR’s biggest stage, you’ll find something great at Obstacle Academy!