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Jumping for joy
Student does Parkour on FHS campus
Pictured: Alex Giles by Sharafenna Williams.

Besides the normal sports that everyone knows about like football and basketball, there's also smaller sports being done right under our noses and many of us don't know it. Parkour is one of them here and many people participate in it.

The word Parkour, as well as the word Traceur, originates from Paris by a man named David Belle. Now you may be wondering what Parkour actually is or what's a Traceur. The actual definition of Parkour is a method of movement focused on moving around obstacles with speed and efficiency. Parkour focuses on perfection, agility, and speed. Another word for Parkour is free running, which was introduced to us as a way to introduce Parkour to the English speaking world. A Traceur is a Parkour practioner. The ability to perform Parkour depends on your body type, speed, angle of approach and the physical makeup of the obstacle.
Alex Giles, sophomore, started Parkour some time in the first quarter of his freshman year, it being both hobby and pastime.

"I was interested in the speed and style needed to Parkour while looking cool and being an individual," said Alex.
When asked about what inspired him he said, "I'm inspired to Parkour because I use it to meet people and just the rush alone is enough for me to get back up and try again after a bad run,"
To be a Traceur you will need some basic traits that can be taught. You need agility, endurance,

Parkour has had many benefits on Alex during his time.

"Some of the benefits I have found useful is the ability to maneuver in a crowd full of people, my balance is better than most others, and the compliments from looking so good," he said.
On the down side, there are also injuries that go along with Parkour. They range from minor injuries such as bruises, cuts, and scrapes, to more serious injuries like breaking legs, arms, wrists, ankles, fingers and any other bone in your body, becoming paralyzed from breaking your neck, and even fatal injuries. Some of his own personal injuries have included cuts on his arms from climbing, scraping his shins from missing a step in a jump and an injury called shin splits. Shin splits are very common in athletes who engage in running sports or even basic activities like biking and hiking.

Some people get Parkour mixed up with another sport called free running. Parkour and free running are not the same. Free running is mostly running with speed and not as much personality. Parkour is slower in movement and has more opportunities for learning tricks.
Speaking of tricks, Alex has his favorite.
"My favorite move is a Kong because of how high I can jump and stick a landing and wall running," he said.

Any hobby you enjoy doing will probably always be better with a friend, to share laughs with and even to challenge each other if it's something competitive.
"I can ride solo or in a group but it is always more fun with friends because you can challenge each other or just for support," Alex said.

Just like with other sports and hobbies you have to train and practice to continue to get better.
"The amount of training varies from person to person, everyone has a different style of Parkour and how they train for it," Alex said

The boundaries for practicing Parkour are endless. You need space to freely move around in order to put your best effort forward. You're not confined to a gym or a field.
"I practice anywhere and everywhere, the world is your playground," Alex said.
Parkour is gaining popularity and acceptance as more people find out about it and challenge themselves to be good. On the other hand, some people don't accept Parkour because of how disrespectful some of the paticipants are. Property gets damaged and there's a lot of trespassing on private property, both on purpose and by accident. So when you're out practicing Parkour, just make sure that you have permission to be where you are and make sure to respect all private property to avoid problems of trespassing.




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