Invisible Ladder

American Ninja Warrior 7's Invisible Ladder

The Invisible Ladder is an obstacle, firstly introduced on American Ninja Warrior 7, as the tenth and final obstacle in every city finals course, replacing the Spider Climb from the past two American Ninja Warrior seasons. It consisted of two hanging rings in a chute, which was 30 feet in height.

Competitors must grab one ring in each hand, and pumped their arms upward as if they were climbing a ladder. Since the rings could only move upwards, doing this would raise the competitors toward the top of the chute, where they could hit the buzzer. Also, competitors were not allowed to use their feet while attempting this obstacle (to compensate that rule, the space between the walls was made wider than the Spider Climb).

Because of the immense amount of upper body usage, in its first season appearance, this obstacle was proven to be much brutal than the Spider Climb, as the obstacle ended many veterans' run, once they got to it, mainly due to them being spent much time and energy after the previous nine obstacles. It took out competitors like Kevin Bull, Flip Rodriguez, Drew Drechsel, David Campbell and Ryan Stratis. Only 11 competitors were able to get up to the top and consequently, finished the city finals course on American Ninja Warrior 7.

The Invisible Ladder made its second appearance on American Ninja Warrior 8. Josh Levin was the only competitor during Los Angeles finals to complete it. However, during Atlanta finals, four competitors could get past the obstacle (including Drew Drechsel, who failed on this obstacle during American Ninja Warrior 7's Orlando finals). Another four competitors were able to get up the Invisible Ladder durng Indianapolis finals, and two more during Oklahoma City finals, totaling 11 competitors like the previous season, but no one was able to complete it during Philadelphia finals (making it the first time ever in American Ninja Warrior history, that no competitor could complete the city finals course). During American Ninja Warrior 8, only four competitors (Ethan Swanson, Thomas Stillings, Joe Moravsky (who completed this obstacle during American Ninja Warrior 7's Pittsburgh finals) and Chris Wilczewski) failed on this obstacle.

On American Ninja Warrior 9, it was replaced by the Elevator Climb, which also has the same function as this obstacle.

Other Appearances

The Invisible Ladder appeared as the ninth and final obstacle on Ninja Warrior UK 2, during the finals' Stage 1, replacing the Chimney Climb from the previous season. 3 competitors (Tim Shieff, Toby Segar, and Owen McKenzie) reached the obstacle, and despite having difficulties while attempting the obstacle, all of them could complete it and moved on to Stage 2. However, the obstacle was replaced again by the Chimney Climb on the next season.


  • Kansas City and Houston were the only 2 out of 6 qualifying cities on American Ninja Warrior 7, where no competitor had failed the Invisible Ladder. While on American Ninja Warrior 8, Los Angeles and Atlanta were the only 2 out of 5 qualifying cities, where no competitor had failed the Invisible Ladder.
  • Venice Beach, San Pedro (Military), and Los Angeles were the only cities where only one competitor could get through the Invisible Ladder (Nicholas Coolridge, Dustin McKinney, and Josh Levin were the only finishers in their respective cities).

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