Parkour, also known as free running, is a way to move quickly and efficiently from one place to another. It uses the environment around you to test your mental and physical limits. Parkour is a discipline that requires strength, agility, mental focus, and a lot of athleticism. Parkour, which has its roots in French military training and is now a popular form urban expression, is also a competitive sport that presents intense physical challenges.
Why Parkour is the Best Extreme Sport
Parkour is an adrenaline-pumping and exciting extreme sport. It combines physical challenge with creative expression and the sheer thrill of exploring urban environments like a superhero. Here are a few reasons parkour is today’s best extreme sport:
1. It’s accessible to anyone with passion
Parkour doesn’t require you to be an elite athlete, or to have specialized equipment. You only need to have a passion for movement, and be willing to push yourself to new limits. Even beginners can quickly progress in this dynamic discipline with the help of many online tutorials and local communities.
2. It’s a complete workout for your body
Parkour is a full body workout that challenges your cardio, strength and agility. You’ll improve your speed, power and coordination by jumping, climbing and running over a variety of obstacles. It’s a great way to lose fat and build lean muscles.
3. It’s a training ground for life’s challenges
Parkour is more than just a sport. It’s also a way to improve your mental resilience, problem-solving skills, and creativity. You’ll gain the confidence and adaptability to succeed in every area of your life as you learn how to navigate new environments and overcome challenges.
4. It’s a community of like-minded individuals
Parkour is more than a sport. It’s a way to live. You can connect with people who share your passion for movement, exploration and community by joining a local parkour group or attending events. Parkour is a welcoming community that will help you reach your goals, whether you are looking for mentors, new friends, or training partners.
The Evolution of Parkour
Parkour has become more popular all over the world and has evolved into a more dynamic discipline with a variety of styles, techniques and competitions. These are some of the most significant trends and milestones in parkour’s history:
France’s Early Origins
Parkour’s origins can be traced back to early 20th-century French military training, when soldiers were taught in “parcours du combattant,” an obstacle course. These courses required runners, jumpers, and climbers to overcome various obstacles, often in open country.
The Rise of the Yamakasi
A group of young men from Paris’ suburbs founded the Yamakasi movement in the 1990s. It combined elements of gymnastics, martial arts, and parkour to create an entirely new style of movement. The Yamakasi introduced a new level in creativity and expression to parkour. They also brought a more urban sensibility, which focused on moving through cities.
The Influence of Hollywood
Hollywood films like “Banlieue 13”, and “Casino Royale,” featuring parkour-inspired action scenes, helped Parkour gain global recognition in 2000. These films introduced a wider audience and inspired a new generation of parkour practitioners.
The Growth of Competitions
Parkour has grown to be a competitive sport in recent years. There are many formats and events that test athletes’ speed, creativity, and technique. The parkour competitions, which include the Red Bull Art of Motion and the World Freerunning and Parkour Federation offer a dynamic platform for the most skilled practitioners around the globe.
The 10 Best Parkour Moves
Parkour is all about movement. Mastering the right techniques is key to your success. Here are ten essential parkour moves that every practitioner should master:
1. The Vault
The vault is a fundamental move that requires you to jump over obstacles while maintaining your momentum. There are many variations to the vault, including the safety vault and speed vault.
2. The Wall Run
The wall run is a technique that involves running up a wall in order to gain momentum and height. This move requires strength and control as well as timing and technique.
3. The Tic Tac
The tic tac is a technique that involves jumping off a wall and landing on another. You can use your legs to push off and gain height. This move is great for overcoming large gaps and obstacles.
4. The Precision Jump
The precision jump involves jumping from one small target onto another. Your legs are used to absorb the impact and keep your balance. This move requires focus and precision as well as spatial awareness.
5. The Cat Leap
The cat leap involves jumping to a high object and grasping onto it with your hands. Next, you use your upper body strength and pull yourself up. This move is great for climbing over tall buildings or walls.
6. The Roll
Roll is a move that involves falling from height and rolling onto your back or shoulder to absorb the impact and keep your balance. If you fall while performing parkour, this move can help you avoid injury.
7. The Wall Climb
The wall climb requires you to use your hands and feet for climbing up a vertical obstacle such as a fence or building. This move requires a lot more upper body strength and technique.
8. The Lache
The lache is a move where you swing from one bar to the next, using your momentum as a guide. This move requires good timing and upper body strength, as well as spatial awareness.
9. The Reverse Vault
The reverse vault involves jumping over an obstacle and landing on another side with your back to it. After pivoting, you can jump off again. This move is great for quickly moving through narrow or crowded spaces.
10. The Dash Vault
The dash vault is a move where you use a small obstacle such as a railing or bench to propel yourself forward. You can also use your arms to pull and push the obstacles forward. This move is great to build speed and momentum.
The Top Parkour Communities and Events You Should Follow
These are some communities and events that you should be aware of if you’re interested in getting involved in parkour, or simply want to keep up-to-date on the latest trends and developments.
1. The World Freerunning and Parkour Federation
The WFPF is one the most important and influential parkour organizations worldwide. They offer tutorials, events, and training programs for all levels. Their goal is to make parkour mainstream and to show its benefits to a wider public.
2. American Parkour
American Parkour is a community of parkour practitioners located in Washington DC. They offer training, classes and events for all levels. A YouTube channel is also available with tutorials and demonstration videos.
3. Red Bull Art of Motion
Red Bull Art of Motion, one of the most prestigious and popular parkour competitions around the world, features a variety of high-flying moves and acrobatic moves to showcase the best of parkour. The event attracts top athletes and fans from all around the globe.
4. The Jump Off
The Jump Off is an innovative parkour competition that pits two teams against each other in a series a challenges and stunts designed to test their mental, creative, and physical skills. This event showcases the best of parkour today in a fast-paced, exciting way.
The Equipment You Need To Start Parkour Practice
Although parkour does not require a lot of specialized equipment there are some essential items that can make your training more efficient and safer. These are the most important gear for parkour practitioners.
Your shoes are the most important equipment for parkour. They provide support, grip, and protection for your feet as well as protection for your ankles. Shoes with good traction, flexible soles and sturdy construction are important for parkour.
Parkour requires comfortable and flexible clothing that allows you to move safely and freely. You should look for lightweight, sweat-wicking, and durable athletic wear, such as track pants, tank tops, or compression shorts.
3. Safety Gear
Although parkour is not a contact sport there is always the possibility of injury when performing high-flying moves and climbing tall structures. You can protect yourself against falls and impact by investing in safety gear like knee pads, elbow pads and a helmet.
Parkour can be done anywhere. However, having a set or obstacles to practice on can make it more fun and effective. You can find obstacle kits online or make your own using everyday items like railings, walls, and benches.
The Future of Parkour: Trends to Watch and Innovations to Follow
Parkour is a sport and discipline that continues to evolve. Here are some key trends and innovations. These are the most exciting developments in parkour today.
1. Virtual Reality Training
Parkour practitioners are discovering new ways to learn and train using virtual reality tools as technology improves. VR allows users to simulate parkour movements and environments. This allows them to practice and refine their skills in an immersive and safe environment.
2. Extreme Parkour Tourism
Travel companies are offering extreme parkour tourism experiences. Participants can see new places and landscapes through the lense of parkour. These tours combine adventure, culture, as well as athleticism.
3. Parkour Fitness Classes
Parkour is becoming more popular as a way to increase strength, endurance, and agility, as fitness trends shift towards more functional and dynamic workouts. Parkour-inspired classes are offered by fitness studios all over the world.
4. Freestyle and creative expression
Some parkour practitioners are adopting a more creative and free-spirited approach to the sport as parkour becomes more mainstream. These parkour artists are breaking away from traditional competition formats and exploring new styles and movements that challenge the boundaries of the discipline.
Conclusion: Why everyone should try parkour
Parkour offers something for everyone, whether you are looking for a new way to stay active, a creative outlet to express yourself, or a new discipline to master. Parkour can help you develop your mental and physical abilities, connect with a supportive community, and explore the world around you in new ways. If you’re not familiar with parkour, it’s worth trying.