Response to “The Split”
There is a classic old post by Stephane Vigroux that you should definitely check out here
As well as Kurt Gowan’s response here
And honestly I think they are overreacting a little bit. In our community in Minnesota where I have been teaching Parkour and Freerunning classes for over a decade, I don’t see this problem very much at all. And where I do see it, I see a very easy way we can counter it. By TEACHING…you know, like we’re supposed to.
Of course I’m going to get a lot of crap from this. People will say things like “Of course you don’t see it, your one of them that just goes out and does huge flips all day and films it all and puts it up on youtubes. And you’re one of the guys that owns a parkour gym and you host parkour competitions.” Yes, that’s somewhat accurate. But I’ve also been training parkour for 20 years. And I spent about 10 of those years without filming anything because I hated cameras and I hated the way it was all about doing big tricks and putting yourself out on youtube and I hated indoor training because it wasn’t “real”. But you know what? I got over all that.
I have also been all over the country (sadly I can’t say I’ve been all over the world, but I’ve certainly met and trained with people who came from all over the world). And I have met a ton of people who completely understand what parkour is and train it exactly as the original founders would have wanted it. Of course these people are usually the ones who have been training the longest. I think what these two articles are focusing too much on is the younger crowd and how they don’t “understand” the sport. You know why the younger crowd doesn’t understand? BECAUSE YOU’RE NOT TEACHING THEM TO UNDERSTAND! I would say if anything, the younger crowd isn’t understanding because the older crowd is neglecting them.
I encourage everyone who thinks this is a huge problem with the world (Including Stephane and Kurt) to come hang out with us and train with us in Minnesota and see how we do things up here. Train at our gym and take some of our Parkour and Freerunning classes to see how we teach. Come to our jams and meet our community. Maybe it will restore a little of your faith in the future of parkour. Just make sure you come with an open mind and don’t judge based on what you think you’ve seen on youtube and the fact that we have a gym, and yes…we hold competitions
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