Everyone can do Parkour
Everyone can do Parkour.
(Yes, reader, that means You!)
If I asked you to close your eyes and think of Parkour, what would you see? Perhaps daredevil young men leaping from building to building, or maybe Captain America traversing across the ruins of New York. Maybe you see someone closer to home, a friend or acquaintance who shares their athletic feats on Instagram.
Do You See Yourself?
If you’ve ever found yourself saying “no way I could do that,” I ask you to please reconsider! First, I want you to rethink the “Daredevil” image that might come to mind. For the most part, these are exceptionally talented athletes that have been training for years to be able to safely and confidently perform such feats. They are also making a personal choice to climb high things, which is NOT a requirement to practice the sport! 20 years ago, the only place to train Parkour was outside. These days we have amazing training facilities with knowledgeable coaches that can guide you on your own personal journey through Parkour.
Take a journey with me back in time…
At the start of 2008 I was an out-of-shape guy just trying to change his life. With a New Year’s resolution in my heart and love handles on my hips, I set out to find any fitness material I could lay my hands on. For months I had set myself on a schedule of running one day then doing a random P90X workout the next day. One fateful afternoon I came across a forum post advertising Parkour lessons starting in my area! I’d heard of Parkour before, but never had the confidence to try on my own. With some trepidation, I attended my first class on May 31st, 2008.
It was love at first jump, and I soon found myself developing a deep passion for the “Art of Movement” as it is sometimes called. With the guidance of a talented coach, I started to realize my own potential as an athletic individual. Having always been the last kid picked in gym class at school, achieving athletic prowess was a huge confidence boost that began to find itself manifesting through the rest of my life. As I grew more proficient I began to coach Parkour. If I could start from zero physicality to jumping up walls, I just knew that anybody could, and I wanted to help them!
From the Spring Floor to the Street
So, if Parkour is more than skilled athletes making impressive videos, what is it and how does one even start? It helps to know how to define Parkour; stated most simply it’s learning how to overcome obstacles in your environment using only your body. Running, jumping, climbing, etc. You can think of it like the Martial Art of Movement. The idea is to prepare your body and mind to be able to react when you need to, being strong to be useful. This could mean having the strength to help in an emergency situation, or it could mean being able to climb up the balcony of your 2nd story apartment after getting locked out. In addition, we train for longevity. We want our bodies to last a long time so we can have active and independent lives well into our later years.
The best place to start learning Parkour these days is going to be in a gym. There, you will find obstacle rich environments with modular equipment that allows you to customize your courses. Here at Skyhook our Parkour area is covered with a Spring Floor designed to reduce the impact on your joints while boosting jump power at the same time. We also have a variety of soft and hard obstacles of various sizes that allow us to build up our comfort levels. And finally, you’ll have access to our talented coaching staff who’re always ready and willing to help you reach your goals. Don’t have any goals yet? Start with a Beginner Parkour lesson to learn the ropes. Know some skills, but hitting a wall on your journey? Try the Intermediate Parkour class where we introduce more advanced skills and training methods.
Then, what’s next? The world becomes your playground! You’ll begin to see your surroundings in a whole new light. Where once there were simple stairs or walls, suddenly you’ll imagine jumping up this or climbing over that. A little bit of that child-like sense of play starts to seep back into your adult life, and that is something truly special; how far you choose to go is up to you. I found myself starting simply to get in shape, now it’s 10 years later and I’m coaching for a living! Maybe you’ll take the skills and apply them to another sport, or maybe you can make a career with your abilities as a Professional Athlete or a Stunt Performer. Or perhaps you simply want to just have fun moving your body.
Whatever your movement goals might be, Parkour can help you achieve them!