Parkour and/or Free Running

Much like the off-road unicycling, it seems there are all kinds of rouge, fringe sports developing out there in the world somewhere.  One of the more intriguing ones is Parkour/Free Running.  Although I was not really aware of it at the time, my first exposure to it was in Casino Royale.  You may remember during the opening few minutes where James Bond was chasing that dude (international bomb-maker named Mollaka) in Madagascar.  The chase showcased myriad feats of parkour awesomeness.

I didn’t think much about it again until watching a recent Ninja Warrior podcast.  (If you don’t watch Ninja Warrior yet, get on the case directly.)  For the last two years, Ninja Warrior has been holding a contest for Americans to be sent to compete in Ninja Warrior.  In this particular podcast one of the American Ninja Warrior Challenge winners, Brian Orosco, demonstrates the art of parkour.  Watch the podcast.

So it turns out there’s this whole discipline called “parkour”, developed by a Frenchman named David Belle.  Parkour (or l’art du déplacement) is the practice of efficient movements to develop one’s body and mind to be able to overcome obstacles in an emergency.  How brilliant is it that someone developed a dicipline dedicated to escape?  I’ll tell you – it’s full on, super-mega brilliant. Watch David Belle perforn awesome nuttiness.

At some point parkour becomes “free running” and I don’t really know yet what the difference is.  So for now, I will only refer to it as “parkour”, because that sounds much more awesome and mysterious than “free-running.”

I am going to have to find me some parkour lessons.


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