BUTTE - Evan Andrews of Butte always wanted to be a ninja warrior, the problem is living in Montana, there are not a lot of gyms for this kind of activity.
But his father and grandfather converted their garage into a Ninja Warrior-style gym and his mother couldn’t be happier.
“He started out with swinging from everything in our house. So, he would be on top of things just swinging around and he would be on top of our refrigerator, open out refrigerator doors and try to climb around. We’re like, ‘you have to stop! You’re going to break things,’ he did break things,” said Evan’s mother Laurie Andrews.
Gradually, his father and grandfather built a gym, especially for ninja warrior training in their garage.
“My grandpa helped me learn a lot of carpentry and that stuff and that just helped me add on to it until it took up the entire garage,” said Evan Andrews.
The training has paid off. The 16-year-old was selected to appear on the 14th season of American Ninja Warrior. Evan will be 17 by the time he heads down to San Antonio in late March and will be able to compete with adults.
He’s upped his training regimen to six days a week for at least three hours a day after school.
“In a lot of courses on Ninja Warrior there’s a time limit, so that’s really where endurance and going fast comes in,” he said.
His gym is made up of 2 X 4s and whatever parts they could scavenge together, but Evan believes his success on the show will come from hard work.
“Honestly, I don’t think a huge Ninja training facility like a CrossFit gym is necessary to become a good ninja, but it’s a big luxury. I don’t think the limit is your gym space or the equipment you get to train on, it’s you and how far you’re willing to push yourself with the resources you have,” said Evan Andrews.
“Evan ran before he could walk and that’s him with everything he’s done with his life, when he puts his mind to it, he has laser focus and that’s an amazing quality we have seen just grow and grow in him,” said Laurie Andrews.
And he’s focused on succeeding on American Ninja Warrior.