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Obstacle Guard: Who we are and Why

Posted by CEO and Founder, Michael Rivera on


Starting around 2010, leading Obstacle Course Race (or OCR) organizers held the first large scale OCR events in the United States. At that time courses were laid out with light to moderate physical challenges such as climbing over small walls, crawling through tunnels, and carrying buckets filled with stone. The general recommendation of what to bring on race day were clothes & sneakers you could throw away and a new set to put on afterwards. Rarely did I see anyone sporting protective gear; in fact it may have been frowned upon by fellow racers as a show of weakness. At that time I took part in numerous OCR events with friends and family who came away unscathed. Annually a notable trend I saw firsthand take effect; Obstacle Course Race challenges became more dangerous. The human spirit is always pushing its limits, wanting to overcome bigger challenges…. And OCR organizers seemed to take notice by raising the bar of difficulty each year.


This sport and lifestyle is taking the world by storm and Championships are now held worldwide. It is the norm to see competitors climbing ropes 15 feet high, scaling cliff-side rocky terrain, traversing ropes across bodies of water, crawling under barbed wire and even leaping over tractor dug crevices or stacks of wood on fire. Many events take place at ski resorts year round testing the endurance of each racer by breaking down the body through extended, rugged and elevated distances. After this change (and receiving my share of scratches, bumps and bruises) I would search through sporting good stores for a company that concentrated on making equipment which would attempt to protect the OCR athlete, but I could not find one. Wearing a patchwork of gear designed for other sports did not appeal to me, so I created a company that did just that and Obstacle Guard LLC was born.

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