Parkour and it’s humble beginnings of parkour
Our story begins in 1902 on a small Caribbean island of Martinique. A terrible volcanic eruption wreak havoc on the unsuspected town of St. Pierre. A young French lieutenant witnessed the destruction and saved the lives of over 700 people. What amazed him was the way native people overcome obstacles in their path with such creativity. He noted, “their bodies were splendid, flexible, nimble, skillful, enduring, and resistant but yet they had no other tutor in gymnastics but their lives in nature”. On the other hand Europeans moved badly and ware searching for familiar paths that ware destroyed by the volcano.
To be of real value, athletic skill and physical conditioning must be joined with courage and altruism, an epiphany which gave rise to the original motto of parkour, “Etre fort pour être utile” – “Be strong to be useful.”
Hebert formulated a physical training discipline that he called “the natural method” using climbing, running, swimming and man-made obstacle courses to recreate the natural environment. As a result his method will be the basis of all French military training and soon become the first obstacle course used by soldiers around the world.
The modern natural way
Inspired by the work of Hebert, Raymond Belle developed “parcours du combatant” – “The path of the true warrior” and trained his son David and his friends. After completing the training David created a group known as The Yamasaki. The main principle of the group ware discipline and humility. The popularity of the movement exploded after the French film Yamakasi, making every teen that saw it interested in the group and the spot itself.
To put it in simple terms parkour is about moving from point A to point B as efficiently as possible. It’s all about moving through your environment efficiently and naturally jumping, climbing, and vaulting over obstacles in your path.
Parkour require you to be creative. You don’t need stairs or pedestal bridge. They are nothing but useless! Every wall, fence or gap you find is opportunity to try some new move. How you jump over it is up to you. Just use your imagination and execute some cool moves.
When you are going to the local shop or to school, don’t use the same old road. Choose to fastest path you see. It doesn’t matter what is in front you just go past it. Parkour let you learn a lot about life even if it’s the simplest thing in the world. When there is obstacle in your path don’t go around it, jump over it.
The easy way to become a modern day ninja
So, parkour sound cool and you are wondering how to get some of the action? The fastest and safest way is to find a parkour group. People from the community are friendly and are always looking for new recruits. They will inspire you to be better and help you with some of the difficult moves. You will learn from the best to become one of the best. There are some parkour gym’s out there. Use your friendly neighborhood Google and find if there is one near you.
The most important thing you should know is: KNOW YOUR LIMITS. People who know their craft can make anything look easy and expecting to be just as good as the people from YouTube is impossible. Take it slow and let your body get used to the action. Parkour is very demanding activity and if you are not used to physical training it will take some time.
And remember don’t get too full of yourself. Parkour is about discipline and humility and if you fall you will fall hard. Don’t overestimate yourself.