What is Parkour?

What is Parkour?

Origin

The discipline/sport known to the world as Parkour was first practised in France in the 1980s by a group called the Yamakasi, which consisted of nine members including David Belle and Sebastien Foucan.

‘Parkour’ was first coined by David Belle in the late 90s; it was based off of the French word Parcours which means ‘route’ or ‘course’.

The term ‘Freerunning’ was later used in the Channel 4 documentary “Jump London” in 2003; in which Sebastien Foucan and two other practitioners were documented performing Parkour movements at well known London landmarks. The use of this term was to easily describe the unknown sport to an English speaking audience.

What is Parkour / Freerunning?

Parkour is the non competitive physical discipline of moving over, through or around obstacles using only ones body. The main focus of practising Parkour is to become more able to move in any given environment and as such many practitioners have adopted the motto "Être fort pour être utile" ("Being strong to be useful") as a well rounded phrase to describe their practice to become a resourceful person.

The pursuit of training Parkour leads each practitioner to develop fundamental skills such as balance, coordination, spatial awareness, precision and creative vision which all promote healthy movement while allowing the practitioner to express themselves truly. This physical empowerment crosses over to metal when they discover they can achieve what was once impossible with the right training and mindset.

At the backbone of Parkour is the gift of practitioners discovering self reliance, determination and confidence within not only their training but in each and every aspect of their life. This stems from them learning time and time again, that although a task is hard, they have the tools within their body and mind to achieve their goals.

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About the Author

Connor O'Carroll

Connor O'Carroll

With many years studying technique and safe practice of Parkour, Connor utilizes these to focus on creative movement using simple surroundings for his own training.

He hopes to be able to share this method of creative expression to his students to see them too enjoy movement even if only given one unassuming obstacle.