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Archive | October, 2011

“It Always Seems Impossible…”

It always seems impossible until it is done.

–Nelson Mandela

So true. When you start out doing parkour, even a simple kong vault seems terrifying and impossible to land. Fast forward a year of steady training and you can do kongs without a second thought, you don’t bat an eye at cat leaps, you’re starting to seriously think about flips…

Many top freerunners believe in this saying. Daniel Ilabaca invented the palm spin, kong gainer, and I think the forward roll to front flip. Ryan Doyle invented the wall gainer. Daniel Arroyo invented the cast bomb. Heck, every parkour/freerunning/tricking move had to be invented by somebody.

Because a thing seems difficult for you, do not think it impossible for anyone to accomplish.

Marcus Aurelius

The first time I saw a kong gainer, my mind was blown. Actually, the first time I saw parkour (this video), my mind was blown. And yet here I am, doing many of the things I once thought impossible.

I’ll leave you with a quote from Tony Robbins:

What we can or cannot do, what we consider possible or impossible, is rarely a function of our true capability. It is more likely a function of our beliefs about who we are.

It’s also a function of our training. Go train!

–Alan

Image via Etsy

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Question #4: Can I Do Parkour in Skate Shoes?

These things? Because that would be a pretty bad idea.

Ok, seriously:

I’ve never worn skate shoes, so I can’t really say for sure. But judging by seeing and handling them, it’s also probably not that great of an idea. They’re not flexible, they don’t have much cushioning, they’re not that grippy. Lack of cushioning is a good thing (more sensitivity to the ground) but none of the other stuff is. Especially no grip.

But again, I’m not speaking from experience here. This is what you should want in a parkour shoe:

  • Grip
  • Lightness
  • Flexibility
  • As little cushioning as your feet can safely take
  • Durability — you’re going to be scraping these all over concrete and bricks, so they better be able to handle some abuse.
  • Comfort — you’re going to be wearing these, heavily, for hours at a time. They shouldn’t pinch.
  • Price. Again, they’re going to take a lot of abuse. You don’t want to drop $120 on them and then have to buy another pair in three months.
  • A color that isn’t white. (personal preference) If you ever trick or flip on grass wearing these shoes, they will get green. It’s guaranteed. Black shoes make that a non issue. *cough*Feiyues*cough* That’s the only issue I have with my KOs.
If skate shoes provide most of that, then wear them, by all means. If not… Well, barefoot is always good. :D
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Weekly Video Showcase 7.5: Advanced Motion, Enjoyment, and Twixtor

Too many awesome videos to push this back until next Saturday!


The amount of skill demonstrated in this video is absolutely jaw-dropping.

 

This jam looks like fun.

 

Lots of big movements.

 

Barefoot, in the rain and cold… hardcore.

 

Kyle Epic Mendoza illustrating the lift and push concept… as well as the Twixtor plug-in.

 

There is no particular rhyme or reason to the Weekly Video Showcase, other than that they’re all somehow related to parkour.

See previous Weekly Video Showcases.

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Weekly Video Showcase 7: Illusionary Ninja Tanks

Very peaceful, lots of graceful movement.

 

Why are Russian woods so nice?!? If I tried that running-barefoot-and-topless-through-the-woods in Virginia, I’d be covered in blood and poison ivy before an hour. *le sigh*

 

Wow, he has really creative (but still efficient) vaulting skills.

 

Antoine is like a ninja tank. A very scary ninja tank. With a gas mask.

 

Gym time with Damien and Tim must be so much fun.

 

I stand by my previous statement, with the addition that it might get very weird.

 

WOAH. This is epic. Cool music, sick tricks, amazing editing. Watch this now.

 

I feel so weak and unaccomplished now…

 

Lots of two of my favorite techniques — precisions and lachés.

 

There is no particular rhyme or reason to the Weekly Video Showcase, other than that they’re all somehow related to parkour.

See previous Weekly Video Showcases.

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Parkour Banned at Florida State University

This is a very typical (and sad) story of parkour being banned. See how many parallels you can draw between this and your own experiences.


The nearly three year old parkour FSU group was just prohibited from training by the university. Why? Because of INSURANCE, of course.

Strong and balanced is the core of parkour, but they’re not an official club because—according to Ehrlich—the university is “afraid” of liability.

“They don’t really understand what we’re doing, and they think that we’re going to jump from something really high and hurt ourselves or do something stupid that could cause injury and sue the school.”

The university claims it’s because parkour is dangerous.

Mary Coburn, vice president of student affairs at FSU, said the high level of risk is the main reason the university cannot endorse it.

“They go on rails, and things get loosened,” said Coburn. “The potential for injury is really high, so as a university, we’re not able to sanction that activity.”

Coburn said there really are no other reasons behind that ban.

“It’s really only because of [the danger of the activity],” Coburn said.

Uh, right. Then why do you allow — even promote — football on campus? Ten percent of college football players sustain brain injuries every year. There are an average of 20,718 (!!) injuries sustained during college football each year. High school football players get about 43,000 to 67,000 concussions each year.

Safety is not the issue with parkour, or any possibly-dangerous sport for that matter. It’s money.

College football was worth $1.1 billion in 2010. Compare that with parkour’s $0. I guess frequent concussions and permanent knee injuries are okay as long as they’re bring in the cash for the universities.

Oh, even more typical:

“It’s hard to define exactly what is and isn’t parkour, because parkour is just movement,” said Ehrlich. “If I jump over a table, is that parkour? I don’t know. The bottom line is if the police are called because people see people doing things that concerns them, they come out there and they deem whatever we’re doing is dangerous, they have the authority to tell us to stop.” [emphasis mine]

Why do people do this?!? I’ve had the cops called because someone saw me and some friends training wallruns. Why is it anyone’s business what I do on public property so long as it doesn’t hurt anyone?


The frustrating part is that some schools are okay with parkour — heck, here’s one right in Florida.

 

But sadly, some schools are not.

 

I’d really love to know what other schools have banned parkour, as well as those who embrace it. Virginia Tech has a big, university-approved parkour club. Anyone out there attend a school that is anti- or pro-parkour?

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English Remake of District 13?

District 13Well well well well… what have we here?

Chicago suburbs: nobody has control over Brick Mansions. Damien, an undercover cop, is facing an extreme mission: a mass-destruction weapon was stolen by Tremaine, the most powerful drug dealer in the Ghetto and Damien needs to infiltrate the gang to defuse the bomb. To accomplish his mission, he needs help from someone who knows well Brick Mansions: Lino, an expert at getting out of trouble with his extraordinary agility. Lino has had problems with the police in the past, but needs the mission to rescue his sister abducted by Tremaine. Will he accept joining forces with Damien?…Will they succeed in bringing down Tremaine?

So basically, the plot of District 13, but in English and re-titled Brick Mansions. Luc Besson is producing again, but no other cast has been announced. I wonder who they will pick to play Leïto Lino. If they do David Belle again, it’ll be the exact same movie — but if they don’t, it won’t be District 13. Most interesting.

Via TwitchFilm.com

Update:

Paul Walker is in talks to co-star alongside David Belle (!) as a replacement for the character of Capt. Damien Tomaso, previously played by Cyril Raffaelli. Luc Besson has refused to do Brick Mansions if David Belle isn’t in it, which means… Well, hopefully we’ll see David Belle on American movie screens before too long.

Via Deadline.com

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