New Jersey native Kacy Catanzaro, 24, became the first woman in "American Ninja Warrior" television history to qualify for the NBC show's finals in Las Vegas.
Past female competitors have been wildcard selections for the finals, but Catanzaro is the first to ever actually earn her spot by completing the course. In just under one week, video of her unbelievable athleticism in Dallas has amassed more than seven million views.
"I knew it was a huge accomplishment and a huge deal for me," Catanzaro shares with The Star-Ledger. "But I didn't realize how many other people in the world would care."
At 5-feet-tall and 100 pounds, Catanzaro begin gymnastic classes at 5 years old. Sticking with the sport through college, she "received a scholarship to attend Towson University in Maryland where she was the NCAA Southeast Regional Gymnast of the Year and the ECAC Gymnast of the Year," reports The Star-Ledger. "She was also a member of Towson's 2009 and 2010 ECAC championship teams."
"Catanzaro currently works at Alpha Warrior, an obstacle course training gym in San Antonio, Texas, where she tests out the facility's obstacle courses and trains other athletes," The Star-Ledger further reports. "The position has also allowed her to train for 'American Ninja Warrior' with her boyfriend Brent Steffenson, a past contestant on the show who also works at Alpha Warrior."
"One of the main reasons I wanted to do this is because I knew I could do it and I knew other woman would think it couldn't be done," Catanzaro explains to The Star-Ledger.
Her next feat will be in Las Vegas, on a four-stage course that's impressively modeled after Japan's Mt. Midoriyama.