Many obstacles in the competition favor men because of the need for upper body strength. This obstacle is more egalitarian. It requires agility, flexibility, and a strong body sense when in flight between contact points. The swinging, where the head is first above the body and then below the body, effects the inner ear (balance) and mental focus due to the quick changes in blood flow to the brain. The salmon ladder at the end breaks the motion and requires a clear head in order to successfully land the bar and reach the dismount pad.
American Ninja Warrior Obstacle Designs
MOONWALK is a balance and agility intensive obstacle and is one of the few that use the water as part of the challenge. The ANW balances on the two independent buoys that float in the Splash Pool and paddles through the water to the Salmon Ladder. Using the paddle rod, the ANW climbs the Salmon Ladder which includes an offset transition, updating this traditional challenge. The ANW then swings off the Salmon Ladder and attempts a landing on the floating Tramp. Since the floating Tramp will tip, a near perfect landing is necessary to spring up onto the elevated Dismount Pad.