Warrior Dash – The Ultimate in Obstacle Courses


If you are a true thrill-seeker, and if you think you have what it takes to conquer some of the nation’s toughest terrain, Warrior Dash might be right up your alley.  Exemplifying what extreme sports are all about this 5k obstacle course will test participants both physically and mentally as they compete to conquer fourteen grueling obstacles in locations across the country.  Since Warrior Dash’s beginning in 2009, where 2000 participants competed in Joliet, IL, it has since expanded to include 32 races across the United States, and another three in Australia and Canada.  2012 stands to be the biggest year for Warrior Dash yet, with another expansion taking it to a total of 60 races with a projected 1,000,000 people participating.

Extreme, Challenging and Lots of Fun

Extreme sports, like any other sport, should be fun for everyone who takes part in it and Warrior Dash does its best to be both extreme and challenging, while maintaining a very lighthearted and super fun environment.  Everyone who participates is encouraged to come in costume – the more extreme the better – and at the end of the competition there will be awards for the craziest costume as determined by audience applause.  Of course, there are also prizes for the fiercest warriors.  The top three times in each of the 12 age divisions will win a steel warrior helmet trophy, while the top three overall times for both men and women will receive the coveted custom engraved steel warrior helmet.

The Event

The day of the event will see waves of 500 people take the course every half an hour.  The waves will generally run between 9am and 3pm.  While you are waiting (or merely being a spectator searching to find your warrior spirit), Warrior Dash has packed all the fun of a festival into each event, with music playing throughout and beer and refreshments being served.  Besides live music and refreshments, there is plenty of other entertainment to be had at Warrior Dash including axe throwing, boulder heaving, face painting, and fireworks.  You can also check in to see how your competition is doing with live results displayed on the Jumbotron.

Some of the most popular obstacles include a 3-feet deep mud pit that will eventually taper up to 1 foot as you reach the end of it.  A mud pit doesn’t seem that extreme you say?  Well, this one is also covered with barbed wire, so you have to make sure you stay low enough to make your way through.  If you aren’t covered from head to toe in mud by the time you make it through this obstacle, you are doing it wrong. There is also a 17 foot high cargo net that warriors must traverse which is popular simply because of the sheer height of it.  The stand out obstacle though, which firmly cements Warrior Dash as an extreme sports legend has to be the Warrior Roast.  The Warrior Roast is an extreme fire jump, where participants must leap over flames that are anywhere from 1-3 feet high!

Mud Sweat and Beer

The motto of Warrior Dash is “Mud, Sweat and Beer.”  That phrase alone should give you an idea of what it is all about.  You will test yourself, you will get muddy, and at the end of it all you will get to have a celebratory beer with your fellow thrill-seeking warriors.  Once you have survived the Warrior Dash, you will truly understand why this has become the largest running series in the world as well as the ultimate event for extreme sports enthusiasts to really test their mettle both physically and mentally.

Creative Commons photo by Sheila Dee