The experience of free running through an open parkor down a city street sounds both enthralling and challenging, and rightlyso. But this new style of fitness ispopping up across the country, enticing avid runners, strength trainingathletes, and other fitness enthusiasts to take to the outdoors for a new styleof workout.
Dubbed Parkour, the workout is also widely known as“free running.” It is a non-competitivestyle of movement which involves a significant fitness level but also strategicbrain power and planning capabilities. The object of the workout is to get from point A to point B in the mostefficient way possible. This often meansspringing over tables or small fences, or even scaling walls, rather thanfinding an alternate path around the obstacle.
Parkour is a challenging workout which requires thestamina of a long distance runner and the strength of a cross-trained athlete,but it also provides numerous health benefits. In addition to being a full body strengthening and cardiovascularendurance workout, the courses a person chooses requires planning skills tochallenge the mind as well as the body. This type of training also improves coordination, balance and landingskills, and increases reaction time by making the brain and the body worktogether.
While anyone can partake in a parkour styleworkout, there are some strategies one should be aware of to prevent injury andkeep safe during their course. Before settingout on a journey, make sure the body is properly warmed up with a fewexercises, and be familiar with techniques of jump squats, pull-ups andpush-ups to enable quick reaction time and proper form while running on thepath.
Parkour can be taken on as an addition to anystrength training workout, and may even enhance the effects of thoseexercises. But after the run isfinished, ensure the body is cooled down properly with a series of stretchesand plenty of hydration. If free-runningthrough a park and not letting any obstacles stand in the way soundsinteresting, research local parkour clubs or city events that can offer lessonsor get one started on their first free run experience.
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