What is parkour?

I'm sure some of you wonders this, and some of you think they know what it is. Though most people I've talked to don't really know, and it's easy to get confused. First of, parkour and free runing is not the same thing. Parkour is all about efficiency. You move forward with the purpose of moving forward. You don't stop and do a flip, because it doesn't really have any purpose. Free Running, on the other hand, although closely related to parkour, is mostly about aesthetic. You do flips, wall spins and such, because you want to and it looks and feels good. It more or less the same thing, but the purpose of the movement is different. David Belle, the founder, was highly inspired bu his father Raymond Belle, who as a child grew up in the brewing Vietnam conflict. His father, Davids grandfather, died as a result of the turmoil, and when Vietnam was divided Raymond was separated from his mother. He ended up in the French Army, where he received training and got the perform dangerous scouting missions. Once he got back to France, he became a military fireman, and somewhere along the line go in contact with Méthode Naturelle, Georges Hérberts theory and training based on natural movement. This would highly influence what is parkour and free running today. Raymond became somewhat of a hero in the fire department, and was a source of inspiration and strength for David. He died in 1999, but some of his spirit lives on thought parkour, I'd like to think. Now you know the background, or at least the short version of it. If you know French you can probably find out a lot more if you want to. Either way, parkour is all about using your body. We live in cities, but are trapped in them as well. We go only where there is roads, walk around walls and buildings. A traceur (parkour practitioner) does not. He, or she (traeseus), view each of these artificial confinements as an obstacle. And makes it a goal to overcome them. We climb, we jump, but we also train and fall. None of the people you see jumping around like lunatics on YouTube started out that way. Progress is made slowly, but steadily. When you've trained daily for almost 10 years, then you can start jumping between buildings. Most people who start doesn't realize just how much the most ambitious traceurs train. Several times a week, or daily, for several hours. I only train 6-8 hours a week, and that very little compared to others. But, it also depends on how long you've trained. If you're all new, start with maybe one session a week. Then move to two, then after a few months maybe, you increase when you feel ready. It's all about knowing your body, and what you can do that sets the limits. If you're not sure you can make it, don't try. If you have made it before, maybe on lower hight, get used to the hight first, then do it. It's an ongoing process of expanding both your physical and mental abilities. But don't go and get cocky either, you might hurt yourself that way too. Parkour is trained for your own sake. It's a great boost to confidence and your body as well. But only as long as you do it right. Of course it's dangerous, but security is very important to us. If I break my leg, I can't train for months. So I make sure I don't break my leg. If you keep in your mind that it's about evolving, not being better than anyone else, not about showing off, not about making money or anything like that, you'll be fine.

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