what does parkour mean in french

What Does Parkour Mean in French?

The physical discipline of parkour, or l’art de déplacement in French, focuses on overcoming obstacles and navigating complex environments. It is characterized as fluid, efficient movements which use the entire body for forward movement. In this article we will explore the philosophy and history behind parkour. We will also look at its core principles and its impact on contemporary culture.

The Origins of Parkour

Parkour was developed by a group young men from the suburbs near Paris in the early 1990s. They were inspired by French commandos who used obstacle course training to prepare for combat. The founders of Parkour wanted to apply these principles in their own lives. They created a practice that focused on movement and agility.

Initially, parkour practice was primarily done in urban environments. Traceurs (as parkour practitioners are called) used walls, railings and other structures to overcome obstacles. Over time, parkour has expanded to include both natural environments and indoor training facilities that are specifically designed for parkour training.

The Core Principles Of Parkour

Parkour is guided by a set core principles. These principles include:


The goal of parkour, then, is to move as quickly and efficiently through the environment as possible. Every movement is carefully calculated and unnecessary actions are avoided. Traceurs aim to move as quickly and fluidly as possible, using the least amount of effort to reach their destination.


Traceurs are always concerned with safety, even though parkour is a potentially dangerous activity. They usually train with spotters so that they can land safely and avoid injury. They also work on increasing their strength and flexibility in order to reduce their risk of injury.


Traceurs are constantly looking for new and innovative ways of moving through their environment. They are encouraged by their instructors to experiment with various techniques and develop their individual style.


The most important parkour principle is fearlessness. In order to achieve their goal, traceurs must push themselves to their limits and face their fears. They learn how to overcome physical and mental obstacles, gaining confidence and perseverance in the process.

The Impact of Parkour in Modern Culture

Since its conception, parkour has become a global movement with tens and thousands of participants around the world. Its influence is seen in everything from video games to action movies, where characters perform elaborate stunts.

Parkour also has a profound influence on modern culture in general. As a practice centered on freedom of expression and movement, it has inspired many people to question conventional boundaries and conventions. It has become a sign of individuality, creativity and resilience when faced with adversity.

In recent years parkour has become a more recognized sport. Competitive events like the Red Bull Art of Motion and World Freerunning and Parkour Federation World Championships show off the athleticism and skill of top traceurs around the globe. This increased visibility has helped to legitimize and attract new participants.


Parkour (or l’art de displacement) is a dynamic and unique discipline that combines aspects of athletics and martial arts with philosophy. Its core principles, which include safety, creativity, and fearlessness, have inspired countless practitioners all over the world. There is much to learn about this fascinating art form, whether you are an experienced traceur or just curious.

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