Parkour- sport and discipline

Known as an extreme form of exercise that demands discipline and strength, Parkour has gained popularity in the recent years. Its founder, Frenchman David Belle, wanted to initiate a movement that can help the body gain speed, strength and agility and he indeed succeeded in doing so. Now, this sport has evolved into a cult and you’ve probably seen the amazing acrobatic moves in movies, music videos and commercials. Due to its complexity, it has even been included in military training.

Everybody can run from A to B or climb stairs, but the ones who do Parkour break the laws of gravity with amazing acrobatics and precise movements. Parkour is a an urban sport, also practiced in common city sites. The men and women who have taken it up are called traceurs and traceuses and the one thing they have in common apart from their astonishing passion and ability is the fact they are mostly young, interested in breaking social constraints and setting their bodies free.  The sport is non-competitive, people doing it for the excitement and thrill they experience. There are currently no parkour tournaments, the lovers of this sport saying that what pushes them to go forward is their internal motivation, their wish to become better and better, not prizes and financial rewards.

 

If you want to start doing Parkour, there are many physical demands. In order to perform the moves you have seen so far, you must have strength, speed and agility, which is why it is very difficult to be successful in it from the beginning. What’s more, the movements have to flow, but also be very precise, you must have discipline and complete control over your body. and physical demands: strength, discipline, speed, agility, control. Running, climbing and swinging, combines with other complex moves are meant to help you strengthen your upper torso and develop athletic abilities.  Traceurs practice Parkour in communities and they learn from each other in training sessions that take place in urban areas.

There is undoubtedly a philosophy behind the extreme sport of Parkour, requiring mental concentration. When performing the moves, traceurs have to concentrate and free their mind from other worries. They have to unite with their bodies, understand its flow and potential and then push its boundaries even further. The mind and body united, they try to also use every element of the surrounding space by not going around it, wasting time, but climbing it going past it. They say that it is an art that helps them overcome fear, constraints, complexes  and the viewers often tend to agree. It is a free form of expression, especially in sense that there are no predefined rules or restrictions.

 

The great thing about Parkour is that no special equipment is needed- a t-shirt and a pair of comfortable pants is enough. But there are risks involved and without instruction and supervision, you might get serious injuries. The people that often appear on TV doing Parkour are trained professionals that needed many years of practice to reach the level they are on. If you want to start learning, you will have to start with basic lessons (landing, precision jumps, parkour rolls) and only after extensive training will you be able to perform amazing stunts such as double Kong vaults and diving rolls.

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