One tough preteen: 9-year-old Kaden Forsha becoming a household name on American Ninja Warrior

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By Daniel Williams
For the Courier

You may not know it, but there is a real American Ninja Warrior living in our community.

No, it’s not Chuck Norris. Kaden Forsha, 9, is maybe the toughest preteen you’ve ever heard about.

The Ute Meadows Elementary fourth-grader is like most kids: school, homework and family time. But most every other minute of Kaden’s existence is dominated by his ninja-warrior obstacle training, which has changed his family’s life during the past four years.

American Ninja Warriors is an American sports competition that is a spin-off of the Japanese series Sasuke. The hit television show features hundreds of handpicked competitors attempting to complete a physically grueling series of obstacles that increase in difficulty. The winning competitors advance to national finals in Las Vegas in hopes of becoming an American Ninja Warrior.

The TV show quickly became must-see-TV in the Forsha household. And while it had been a show that featured only adult competitors, Kaden’s dream came true when it was announced that there would be an “America Ninja Warrior Junior” competition.

So how did Kaden get selected as one of 64 in three different age groups out of over 10,000 applicants to be features on the show? It started when Kaden was young. Really young actually.

“My mom says I was doing ninja in her tummy because I never stopped moving. I started rock climbing with my parents and grandparents before I could walk,” Kaden said. “I practice everywhere. Since we aren’t close to any of the gyms, I mostly practice in my house, which we have turned into a ninja gym.”

Kaden isn’t kidding. The Forshas have turned their home inside and out into a full-on training facility. From the dining room to the living room to even having their own rock-climbing wall, the Forshas’ house is full of training obstacles that have helped turn the entire family into lean mean ninja warrior machines.

“The biggest part of the commitment was giving up the living room, dining room and basement,” said Kaden’s mom, Jennifer. “However, now that he is so much better and so serious about it, we have been trying to get him to ninja gyms as much as possible.”

Moreover, Kaden wasn’t just one of the lucky 64 kids selected to be on the show, he is good. Real good. During the show’s second episode that aired Saturday on the Universal Kids Network, Kaden dominated the course and the competition, advancing to the semifinals by winning three head-to-head races.

Kaden and his family were also featured at the beginning of the episode, where the entire world got a glimpse of the Forshas’ home gym and commitment to being the best.

Also, about 100 people also turned out for an “American Ninja Warrior Junior” watch party Saturday at the Fox and Hound in Centennial.

What is next for Kaden? There are 18 more episodes of “American Ninja Warrior Junior,” and if you saw him in action on Saturday, there is a pretty good chance he keeps going into the competition. Stay tuned.