This is in response to a new article just posted by Stephane Vigroux. Out of all the founders of the discipline, he has now posted the end all to the argument of parkour and freerunning. It has nothing to do with the names and has everything to do with “Why Do You Jump?” Parkour and Freerunning are the same thing in essence and that argument is for another time, what matters is that both of those names are being exploited. The main company that is stepping on these is Redbull, looking just for money. There IS a difference and general Split that has been happening in parkour and the sides couldn’t be more different. The 1st side is the people doing flips and tricks and general screwing around with their bodies in creative ways, this is not necessarily wrong but the reason they do what they do is drastically different from what the other sides reason is. They flip just to show off, to prove to the world that, “hey look at me, yea over here,” this is NOT in any way parkour, this is ONLY SHOWING OFF, like a child throwing a tantrum. If the reason you jump is to show off or for any other reason that is not holistic, you are NOT doing Parkour. The movements may look the same, they might even have a grasp of the extremely limited base philosophy of parkour as, “a movement discipline of going from A to B as fast and efficient as possible,” I’m sure anyone could spit that out these days, even if they don’t do parkour. This base statement of philosophy is very limited, and can, and has, been twisted to extreme degrees. Doing twenty tumbles around a corner to just do a wall flip and then kong away is in no way parkour. Now it can be though, this is where it can get confusing. If you really understand why you’re doing what you’re doing and understand that it is totally useless and you’re doing it to just mess or play around then of course you are doing parkour, because even as David Belle has said, all that is just an expected extension of parkour, for to truly trust yourself in parkour you start wanting to test yourself in other moves and environments, but he said to understand that, “It is totally useless”. But in most cases now-a-days that is not the case and the “traceurs” of today do not understand what they are doing and are only showing off, which is evident in the countless YouTube videos out there. I am not nearly as literate on these terms as the founders, so I invite all of you to read these articles: A Call to Arms, Dilution, The Split.
Dissect yourself like eating a pizza and be lost, or dissect yourself like drinking a cup of hot chocolate and know who you are -James
This is an unlikely enemy, but thee worst one for me in the winter. Eggnog, yup, Eggnog… sooo good but that’s what makes it my worst enemy. Almost half a thousand calories in only one cup… NOBODY ever drinks only one cup, its impossible. Add to the fact that the drink makes me want to go to bed for a week afterward. That makes it almost impossible for me to train that day, since its also the winter. All these things just add up to a prospectively weak training season…all due to Eggnog. But that’s not really the case, too often people blame substances for their problems which is just not taking responsibility for Your choices in this life. This is a serious problem since its extremely relevant to the average person. A third of Americans are obese, not just fat now, but obese. This is insane, we take pride in our intelligence but forget that the greatest minds in history are also the most devoted to nutrition and personal responsibility. We are not so smart as we think and we need to start actually being smart. Eating smart, moving smart, and thinking smart. To say that Eggnog is the end of me is just stupid, I’m the only person that will ever be the end of me. The number one reason people die these days is incredible retarded, they…eat…too…much…shit. This is un-real, the level of arrogance of the human life is screwed and the only way to make a difference is to be an example for the youth, to eat smart, to move smart ( hell, to even move at all ), and to think smart. Not hard, but impossible for the younger generations that are coming up watching their parents and the people on TV being idiots. Everything we do affects others, because as traceurs, we might not be looked up to, but we are looked upon. We are seen as those that take and twist perspectives of the passer-by and as such, even with so small a radius of effect, we can use our movements and our strength to be examples to the public.
Train Smart, Train Hard, Have Fun.
This is going to be a hard article to comprehend if you’ve never been in the “zone”. The zone being, that momentary lapse out of all your mental problems, restraints, and any and all troubles you might have weighing you down. Now while this zone may be nigh on impossible to reach while you have these burdens, its not impossible, and on the bright side, afterwards you will not really care that much about them. You must realize that though they have their place, they are not supposed to keep you from experiencing life. If you have never been in the zone, then I suggest you try to be more of yourself, to be 100% legit in who you are. That though is only one part, the prologue if you will. You then have to be (This is all in the traceurs sense) at the end stages of your warm up. The point in which your muscles have become warm and your moving into the actual session. This point is crucial, the point where your increasing rise in energy injection stales out and you ride a medium wave of energy through your normal session. What needs to be done is to let your body continue to inject yourself with energy, this is the hard part, because to do so is to, in essence, let the primal part of you out of its cage. Most people just cant do this, cant let themselves be truly free. In these self made prisons of the mind they are in, they are victims of their own disregard. This is also the hardest part to describe, even though you’re in the most “living in the moment” you can ever be. I have not perfected getting into this zone, and I probably will spend the rest of my life trying to integrate the zone into my whole being, to have those energy waves be behind me in all hours and to be relatively fearless.
To have an example, although this one is more of the over hype and not being grounded nature. Lets say you just got your 1st ever Kong down over a significant gap, when you land your body is still rolling on that energy wave, and to continue to ride it you must just stay in motion and keep doing the jump at least three times. If you even sit down for a few, you will lose it, but if you keep moving and just do a route, or parcours, then you can ride that wave for however long you keep your mind in your heart and not distracting yourself in your two upper brains, especially the neo cortex.
I will probably write more on this later after I study it a bit more, but this state of being is highly volatile and can easily go up or down, up is injury, down is disappointment.
This question is very peculiar to me, for it is always evolving just as I am. Parkour makes us evaluate ourselves every time we train or even think of parkour, which for me is constantly. I cannot go for an entire hour without thinking about parkour. Now before someone calls me obsessed ( pretty much everyone now-a-days lol 😛 ), parkour is a very broad topic concerning its larger but yet equal to life philosophy and general way of seeing things after even one training ( or even play ) session. parkour redefines the way people look at things, I say things because it is not just the surroundings we see differently after taking up parkour, we see people differently, we see philosophy differently, and we see what we are differently. this last one is important, since to know what we are becoming is crucial to who we are. Example, if we were to know we would become a self fulfilling bureaucratic jack wagon, what would we do…. keep on track and become a soulless greedy bastard ( im just using a decades of stereotype that means no offense to any soulless bureaucrat that’s reading this 😀 ), or would we rectify ? This all lead to the big question… Why do you jump?
To answer this is to know who you are as a person and as a tracuer ( for the sake of me being lazy I will use the perfunctory male term from now on, but I want all the gals out there to understand im not limiting this 😀 ), and as for me… there is no separation between the me as a person and as a traceur, parkour is my life and will stay my life even if im cripple and bedridden. ( this is a topic for a different time but im my opinion, anyone can do parkour, even if their only asset is their mind and sense of will ). So to know why is it your doing parkour is to know why you were attracted to it in the beginning, you might have seen some one flip from a wall and run off or some one pop onto a chest high rail with zero sound and equal effortlessness. if these were the reasons that you’re training parkour now then study them and find what pushes you towards this discipline. As for the first example, you might just want to show off and be able to shrug off social barriers in a self verses society temper of self righteousness ( well props for creativity… haha 😛 ). As for the second, maybe you want to live with such mind boggling complete strength that you can go around and be as lazy yet as talented as you want to be ( make no mistake, to have complete strength would be the height of laziness; think… if you were too tired to pick up the phone and stand there holding it because it took to much strength.. wouldn’t having such strength as to not even feel the phones weight as you pick it up be lazy? now theres a paradox 😀 ).
So your a traceur ehh??? Do a backflip ! hahahaha… now why do you jump ?
Those of us that know what parkour is, either from watching TV or Youtube, will know that it looks extremly fun and on the flip side ( 😀 ) theres those people that think its dangerous and we shouldnt let people be crawling and jumping over everything. Two very different persectives but have somethingin common. Both are true to an extent, let me explain the 2nd one 1st. These people are often considered “close minded” in the parkour community but they are people, and as such, their opinions matter. They say its dangerous, true. They say we shouldnt do it, false. They may have their opinions on safety but when they start saying we “shouldnt” do something, it starts to become a problem. Nobody has any right to interfere with anothers life without express permission to do so by the person being affected. the parkour community has already taken steps to stop people from hurting themselves by spreading the true philosophy of parkour. Now those people should be ignored, lets focus on the 1st being 2nd now haha. The people that see it as fun, in direct opposition of the 2nd group. They are indeed right, parkour is fun, but its not quite what they think. Parkour requires extreme hard work to progress, thousands of hours of repitition and drill, and countless more doing plain conditioning drills. These aspects of parkour are what people dont want to see when they get into it, they just want to see the big jumps and all those fancy flips and tricks, but if they actually want to go far in parkour they must drill, they must sweat, they must question themselves about why they train, all this must happen or else these people will just start with the fancy big jumps and tricks and burn out after a couple of years. I dont mean burn out in the working out sense either, i mean they will literally burn out their bodies. Muscles will not work properly, nerves will be fried, joints and tendons will snap and tear, and the person will likely just count it amongst other fads they have tried. parkour will beat you down if you dont love it, it will be worse then a scorned wife, it will raise you up and then drop you, laughing at you while you just start to comprehend the most important lesson you should already know…
That the Flame that Burns the Brightest, Will also Die the quickest
And the Flame that is slowly lit, and taken care of
Will Burn Forever
This is going to be one continous serious of posts that delve into my life as a traceur. They might not be that intertaining or provoke the strongest of thoughts, but it may help my fellow traceurs and traceuses pass more easily over their obstacles.
To give some insight as to who I am…
I am a senior in high school of A’s, B’s, and sometimes a C. I dont particularly like school and most classes i deem as a waste of my time. I dont have a car nor alot of friends who drive me everywhere, i use the ancient method of mobilizing oneself called walking and sometimes when i just run to where i want to go, absurd aint it? but thats society now-a-days. as you might imagine, this causes alot of problems when trying to get to a particularly good training location, mainly, the time it takes. I live on a peninsula and it takes time to navigate civilized swamp land, espeacially if you want to go to another peninsula, or another swamp land, whatever takes your fancy 🙂 hence, my training locations are limited to a 10 mile radius. But it usually lands me to training right outside my door pretty much, not the best, but not the worst locations on this planet either. When i first started training, five years ago, i progressed albeit slower then i would have liked, but i learned an in-valuable lesson. It being, to open your eyes and see what is and not what you make of it. this is particularly relevant to the “Location Epidemic” so many people find themselves in when they start parkour; they see some amazing videos on Youtube and then they find themselves outside and trying to imitate everything they saw in the vid’s. What happens is that the skill level and the enviroment vary greatly from the video to the viewer which results in the begginer getting depressed with their own unique environment and eventually avoid training to find a “better spot”. What they fail to see is the truth of the matter, that their environment is just as good as anywhere else. I found this out because of location and transportation issues, i had to (and still do) train right outside my house in the locality. I make use of open spaces of cement and curbs, trees and power boxes, and the local city center with its parking garage. these are my weights and barbells, these are my coaches and trainers, these are my friends and foes, they help me make use of the one tool that out-stands and out-lasts them all, my body. you dont need a parkour park in your backyard to make you better, you need to see things for the tools they are and to prepare your body for the turtures you send its way.
Train Safe, But Train Hard
Ever since I got into parkour 5 years ago I’ve been looking up ways to make myself stronger. From the nervous system all the way to how to properly remove calluses while still leaving behind the tough skin I was aiming for. I’ve spent hours researching, cross referencing, and trying to find the underlying layer of true strength I’ve been looking for ( when I say strength, I mean physical and mental ).
This has lead me to a great deal of information, but I’ve discovered one major flaw in my approach to being, “the strongest version of yourself,” as Elliott Hulse would say. I have not DONE it, sure I know a lot but that doesn’t help unless you actually implement it. This may sound just like, “DUH,” but I actually see this happening all around me. Especially in the weight-loss world. There’s so much info that people easily get overwhelmed and slowly start going in circles, not realizing that if they just would get up and head outside they’d lose weight. Now, mind you, I still train everyday. but I still do my old progressive training. If I just put a little of what I have learned into affect, I’d be doing double better then what I’m at now.
Once you start doing research, start implementing it right away. Don’t wait till the research makes sense ( because it still might not be affective ), you have to do it for yourself. The decades old method of trial and error is the best way, just put research in one end and see what pops out the other, and if it smells bad, don’t eat it but store it in a cupboard in till you know for sure it is useless.
Research is a tool, but we’ve all made it into a workout in and of itself.