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Urban Ninjas: Parkour and Freerunning.. They exist!

Updated on June 26, 2016

So what is this 'Parkour'?

As the Tracy Morgan said in "Cop out", Parkour is a french martial art to go around and over stuff. And yep that's pretty much what it is. Parkour is an art used to reach from point A to B in the quickest way possible without using anything besides your body and the environment. While there's a strong use for this in military obstacle courses, Parkour has taken a leap into the concrete jungles and has many passionate practitioners dedicating their time into learning this artform. The art includes wallruns, climbing, vaults, swinging, jumping and dropping from high places, and all this is done in a way that it does not cause even a bit of harm to the body. Parkour has been highlighted in many action movies such as the starting chase scene in james bond's Casino Royale and other movies like Ong Bak and some Jackie Chan movies and countless others. Parkour is said to be developed in France and David Belle is referred to as the founder of Parkour. He is damn cool, and has also starred in a bunch of movies, one of my favourites would be District 13, in fact the Parkour clip below features in that movie:

Okay that's some really cool stuff, now what is 'Freerunning' and how is it different from Parkour?

Although Freerunning and Parkour are closely linked, Freerunning is more about the visuals and fancy tricks like the triple back-flip Anakin does in Star Wars. While Parkour "traceurs" focus on reaching from point A to B fastest way possible, Freerunners would do the same but their focus would be more inclined to the coolest and probably the riskier way possible.would reach B faster. Like if there's a drop from a ledge or something, the Parkour method would probably just be to drop/jump down(with proper technique of course) but the Freerunner would try to make it more creative and will probably do a flip or something to make it cooler. So it would be right to say that Parkour is safer and more efficient than Freerunning and requires less skill. But free running is definitely something anyone would want to master, and so most of these urban ninjas don't stop at Parkour and continue to train and push themselves to the limits and beyond to master Freerunning, because it is so damn awesome, checkout the video below to see some badass Freerunners in action:

you gotta watch this

These people are amazing! Can I ever be one of them?

Freerunning requires intense dedication, these people have years of intense training and also it is accompanied with a lot of risk, people can surely die doing that stuff or even be crippled for life, I would post a "Freerunning fails" vid but that's a little too demotivating. But anyways you can surely practice this stuff as long as you're in a safe environment and you take the proper safety measures, and start from the very basics. I would suggest not to try any of the complex stuff and you can definitely try your hands at parkour because it's not as dangerous as the latter and the chance of breaking your neck trying to do some flip is definitely lower. So as long as you're a suitable age, I'd say teenager to early 30s(or if you think you can do it), and you have a safe area to practice and a will of fire, I'd say start looking up youtube vids on basic Parkour moves and start your practice, I suggest you start will some basic vaults, wallrun/climbing, fallbreak rolls and stuff. and be sure to warm up and do proper stretches. there's a bunch of good channels out there that go from beginners to advanced, like tappbrothers, laflairparkour, etc. just don't forget to play safe,

A small example: The parkour roll~

Parkour and Freerunning deal with a lot of physics and use it for lots of tricks, like the extremely useful Parkour roll, which is a must have skill for every freerunner/traceur. It it, in most cases, used for breaking falls from high drops such that the impact from the drop is not concentrated on the feet but displaced throughout the body. This allows the person to jump from much higher places than their normal limits, check out this extremely good tutorial from which I had learnt the parkour roll:

Pretty cool right? And with that comes the end of this post, hope you found it interesting, and if you try to do any of this stuff and join the urban ninjas, be sure to take proper precautions. oh yeah and I'm not liable if you hurt yourself trying anything mentioned here! and remember there's a unlimited info out there if you wanna know more about this, and be sure to check out all those awesome youtube videos.

Be sure to share your views, ideas and feedback in the comments and feel free to ask any questions whether it is regarding the topic or even if it's totally unrelated, I'll be sure to respond.

And that's all for today~

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