Ninjas in training

Ninja Warrior''s Daniel Mason (centre) with young gymnasts Fintan Hunter, Jace Gooren, Xavier Healy, Jacob Greaves, James Tonks, coach Trent Whittaker and Harry Kennedy. Picture: MITCHELL CLARKE. 196948_03

By Mitchell Clarke

Junior gymnasts became budding ninjas when Australian Ninja Warrior contestant Daniel Mason, better known as the ‘Barefoot Ninja’, launched a new program at Reach Gymnastics in Pakenham.

The NinjaZone program is a fusion of gymnastics, martial arts, freestyle movement and obstacle training which aim to teach children how their bodies work by using all their muscles together and independently.

“We introduced NinjaZone as we wanted to provide another opportunity for kids to gain fundamental movement skills, and the program tied in really well with our core values of fun, fitness, fundamentals and friendships,” Reach’s Rebecca Tilley said.

“We love the fact that the program not only incorporates all of the physical elements of ninja, but has the character development aspect, where the kids talk about manners, respect, working hard, self-responsibility and more.”

With Australian Ninja Warrior being a hugely popular show for children, Ms Tilley said it was so exciting that kids were keen to get involved, with initial classes filling already.

“We were so lucky to have the Barefoot Ninja, grand finalist from this year’s series, visit our gym to meet our gymnasts and open our classes,” she said.

“Daniel was so gracious with his time, demonstrating a ninja course for the kids, helping them with the course, getting lots of photos and answering all our questions about the show and how to become a Ninja Warrior.”

Reach Gymnastics hope to train up more coaches and run additional classes so more children can get involved.

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