Crozer-Keystone ER Doctor to Compete on ‘American Ninja Warrior’ - Crozer-Keystone Health System - PA

Published on June 11, 2015

Crozer-Keystone ER Doctor to Compete on ‘American Ninja Warrior’

Crozer-Keystone Health SystemMedia Contact:
Mary Wascavage
(610) 284-8619

Richard Shoemaker, M.D., Ninja Warrior Participant

Watch Richard Shoemaker, M.D., Emergency Medicine physician at DCMH, compete on the NBC show American Ninja Warrior on Monday, June 22.

UPDATE: The air date has been changed to June 22. Originally published as June 15.

DREXEL HILL, PA— Rich Shoemaker, M.D., emergency medicine physician at Delaware County Memorial Hospital, will compete on the popular NBC show American Ninja Warrior on Monday, June 22.

Shoemaker, a Philadelphia resident, is a ninja in and out of the ER. Not only does he make time for his wife and four children while balancing a hectic work schedule, but he also finds time somewhere in between to train. At 39, Shoemaker says he is in the best shape of his life and will show off his talents as part of American Ninja Warrior’s seventh season. Growing up in Cheltenham, Pa., Shoemaker found his love for training and competing from being on his high school and college’s wrestling teams. He also began rock climbing in high school, which he says has helped him to keep fit over the years.

Shoemaker uses working out as a form of stress relief after a busy emergency room shift. He works at both Delaware County Memorial Hospital in Drexel Hill and Taylor Hospital in Ridley Park. Shoemaker earned his medical degree from Temple University School of Medicine and completed his residency at Drexel University College of Medicine / Hahnemann University Hospital. When he doesn’t have time to train at the local rock climbing gym, Shoemaker trains in his basement or nearby park—and even gets his kids involved whenever possible. “I was attracted to the show by friends and family who for at least two years have watched it and encouraged me to try out,” he says. “I do not watch a lot of TV so I had never really seen the show—the first time I saw it was in a patient’s room. It looked really fun and I asked what it was. They told me it was American Ninja Warrior and I thought, ‘I think I could do that stuff.’ Thus, the seeds were planted.”

Shoemaker adds that he also wanted to compete to inspire others that they can still have fun while having a family and career. “More and more I run into young men who want to delay the responsibilities of a family and career, and will openly admit that it is because they are not done ‘playing,’” he says. “Well, I'm not done ‘playing’ either, and I have four children and a very rewarding full time job as an ER doctor. I want young men to see that growing up into adulthood is nothing to fear. In fact, it makes all of life, including the really fun stuff, far more rewarding.”

Shoemaker says that the Log Roll was, by far, the hardest part of the course. “It was only the second obstacle but it spun you around so fast that you could not tell if the ride had stopped,” he says. “When you opened your eyes at the bottom you were quite sure you were still moving. Then, immediately afterward, we had to run over the balance obstacle while trying to get over severe vertigo.”

American Ninja Warrior is an action-packed show that follows competitors as they try to successfully complete a series of challenging obstacle courses. Those who successfully complete the course will move on to the national finals with a grand prize of $1,000,000. Although many competitors have come close, no one has yet successfully achieved total victory and claimed the prize. This season more than 700 contestants are expected to come out and test their speed and strength on the course. Tune in to NBC 10 on June 22 to see Rich Shoemaker, M.D. represent the Philadelphia area as well as Crozer-Keystone Health System as he tries to come out on top.

For more information about Emergency Services at Crozer-Keystone Health System, visit

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