American Ninja Warrior, Barclay Stockett, tells SMA Prep Cadets, “Mindset is Everything!”

American Ninja Warrior, Barclay Stockett, shared her story with SMA Prep cadets as part of this year’s Project Equality which is one of the pathways developed through The Inspire Project. As many cadets are fans of the show, they listened intently as she answered their questions while enlightening them on the bigger picture that goes beyond winning competitions.

Although Stockett can sometimes make the Rope Swing, Warped Wall, or Jumping Spider look easy, cadets were given the real scoop about the dedication and hard work she puts into training. From January to June every year she trains 5 days for 4 hours a day and sometimes more. She emphasizes to cadets, however, allowing time for your body to recover is as important as the training time you put in.

In response to the classic question of what did you want to be when you grew up, Stockett replied, “a firefighter, an archeaologist in Eygpt, a trapeze artist, and an architect.” She would eventually become a gymnast which empowered her as she built her body and mind to win competitions and overcome challenges.

As far a being a strong woman competing with men she describes her experience when she was growing up and out racing boys. “I had to learn for myself and I began to understand where a boy’s pride would be hurt. I was stronger and faster and they couldn’t except it. Women that look strong, just look strong.  No matter who you are you can be strong.

Ms. Stockett shared that the hardest part about what she does is the expectations and always being in the public eye. “People are expecting you to be happy and bubbly and anything less than perfect can feel like a failure.” She reminds cadets to experience failure as a learning experience every time you feel it. As far as experiencing a lack of confidence, Stockett says, “it is usually outside coming into something- when I did gymnastics, I became scared of the balance beam as part of my series. I had to get to the point where fear is not knowing what is going to happen, it’s the unknown, but you have to remember Mindset is everything!”

With a background in as a physical therapist, she is not only an American Ninja Warrior but she also works for Alpha Warrior where she teaches how to use ninja-like obstacles for the military. She travels all over the world visiting military basis and doing what she loves to do which is help others through teaching and training.

“Remain super passionate about living the life we’re given.  If you are passionate about something, try it find out if you can do it. Life is too short to work half your life doing something you don’t enjoy and remember to have gratitude that you get to do something you love.”

Afterall she says, “I never thought I could make money playing on obstacles, I just work really hard and diligently.”