The Process of Making a Stronger You with the RKC Plank

A great workout is perhaps best defined in the euphoric and sweaty aftermath of performing an RKC plank. Your muscles burn with a fiery intensity while your body cries out for you to mercifully finish the last excruciating seconds.

Yet, as the perspiration glistens off your body and you gasp for breath, you will recall with a smile why you just did this grueling exercise.

There are many variations of a traditional planking exercise that you can easily incorporate into your workout. However, the Russian Kettlebell Plank is the most formidable.

It is the creation of former Soviet special forces instructor, Pavel Tsatouline. The intent? To test the endurance of the targeted muscle groups more thoroughly than a traditional plank.

The great thing about any planking exercise is that you don't require any equipment. Thus, you can read about and create an improvised workout at home that includes the RKC plank when you aren't able to get to your local gym.

Let's take a look at the critical aspects of this challenging workout maneuver.

How to Perform the RKC Plank

The first thing to remember when performing any exercise is that it must be done correctly. Your muscles will not fully benefit from your strength training, and you can also hurt yourself by not exhibiting proper form. So, take the time to get the fundamentals of your routine down.

As you incorporate the RKC plank into your workout, make sure that you properly loosen your body up before attempting. Start your workout with some cardio, get your heart rate up, and perform the RKC plank during the strength training part of your exercise routine.

Let's get to it!

Set up in a traditional plank position. Remember always to keep your head facing the floor. By lifting it, you strain your neck, and this will also affect form. Place your hands under your shoulders, a little more than shoulder-width apart.

Stretch your legs out and press your toes against the ground. Don't lock your elbows or knees while maintaining a straight back. Now, let's transition from the traditional plank into the RKC position.

Clasp your hands together into fists. Rather than extending your arms, sit down on your forearms so that they are at a 45-degree angle. Keep your legs extended, tensing your glutes.

Pull the muscles in your upper body together, such that it feels like your elbows, shoulder blades, and forearms are contracting. Pull your midriff up, such that you are attempting the pike position. Hold, tense, and control your breathing.

There you go! That's the RKC plank!

Benefits

Deep core activation

Glutes

Quads

How to Incorporate into a Workout

You can add this planking, or method of training, into your workout by determining the most effective time perform it.

There are different schools of thought as to when you should do the RKC plank. The debate concerns whether you choose to work your abdominals at the start or towards the end of your ensuing strength routine.

As we have seen, focusing on your abs works your core, and working your core helps your abs. It is suggested that the most appropriate time to work the abs is indeed right after your cardio warmup, as you start your workout.

The reason is to ensure that your body feels energetic and robust, not drained from an hour of working out.

The intensity of the RKC plank means that you don't want to wind your workout down with this type of move. By working the core at the start, you will ensure that they benefit to the most significant degree possible.

You should always remember that when it comes to the realm of working out, there are many schools of thought. Each one with their idea's as to the when, why, what and where of the gym. Such authority includes how to end your training regimen.

Generally, though, stick to this advice and try and wind down your exercising routine with a less strenuous move.

Sets and reps

If you are doing exercises using weights, then you are used to sets and reps. For example, a bench press might involve performing three sets at 12 reps each.

However, an RKC plank is a different sort of animal. You are maintaining and holding a specific position, rather than lifting a free weight or a chest press machine.

Therefore, it is essential to use timing as part of the sets and reps equation. Start slow. Hold your RKC plank position for a 10-second rep at one set.

Depending on your level of fitness, gradually increase both sets and reps. Work yourself to three sets at 20 seconds each. Don't forget to focus on your breathing as you hold your position.

The primary goal of this exercise is to create tension in your body. Regardless of how often you are hitting the gym, try and incorporate the RKC plank into your routine regularly.

Sometimes the most effective workouts aren't the ones that use actual weights. Instead, through inventive techniques, you can build your body and increase your endurance.

Eat, drink and sleep

So, you are doing your RKC planks and staying in shape. How do you maximize the potential gains from this exercise? Well, you need to focus on various issues other than sets and reps.

Working out is a multi-dimensional effort. Sure, you can hit the gym, but you also need to ensure that you have all the aspects of your health aligned. For example, if you are not eating properly, drinking plenty of water, and getting the right amount of sleep, no amount of planking will help you grow.

Sleep helps repair your body, while healthy eating ensures that you are putting on muscle, not fat. Also, while water hydrates, a general and overall awareness of taking care of both your physical and mental realms will increase all the benefits that you seek through exercise.

Gym Time!

There are many exercises that you can perform to increase the strength of your body. Free weights and machines are great tools to develop muscle. However, an RKC plank is the move that you can use, whether you are at home or at the gym to build your body's core.

Everyone wants to look their best and feel great. However, it is reassuring also to know that this particular workout, building your core, also has a positive effect on your stabilization muscles.

Thus, your balance will improve, as will your posture and the parts of your body that are responsible for movement will benefit.

So, whether you love going to the gym or have an improvised workout routine at home or when traveling, consider using the RKC plank as part of your routine. It is challenging, but you will feel rewarded upon completion.

Please feel welcome to leave your opinions in the comment section. We would love to hear from you!

Featured Photo by bruce mars from Pexels

Learning About the Various Parkour Flips

It's a fun day when you can go out and practice your parkour flips. It can be done anywhere, in the backyard or city. Parkour is unique in that. You don't need concrete or even a wall to have fun with parkour.

Many people choose to stay on the ground but are then missing out on the exhilarating practice. Learn these parkour flips and go out into the world. Show off your skills with this practice of power, determination, and energy.

The Various Parkour Flips

There are many things that you can do when practicing parkour. Just like skateboarding, the style of the flip is based on the turns and flips involved.

The various parkour flips are endless as you can keep adding new variables to the equation. Today we'll talk about some parkour flips that you can do as a beginner to start your career off right.

The Tuck flip, Pike flip, Layout, and Wallflip will have you looking like a ninja.

The Advent of Parkour

In Western Europe, a precursor to parkour was developed by the French, who had learned the craft from indigenous tribes of Africa.

Then Georges Hërbert made efforts to save the people who were in danger from the eruption of Mount Peièe. That then reinforced the belief in parkour. Herbert created a school where he taught the craft to students.

Eventually, this belief in athletic skill and courage became the standard teachings of the French military.

What led us to today

Groups were formed over the 20th century that practiced and perfected the art. They were often semi-closed groups, requiring an existing member to invite a new disciple to the group.

There were doctrines and beliefs in these groups made to further the independent practices of the members. Today parkour groups still exist and perform regularly.

The training is considered to be a significant discipline of the body and mind. It seems that this practice is not just a casual hobby to pick up; it is a discipline formed from the warriors and athletes of our past.

Parkour Flips

Parkour is not just flipping. You can learn to vault over obstacles, make precision jumps onto small or narrow objects, vertical jump onto walls, and learn to roll out of a long fall. Still, parkour flips are an excellent practice with which to begin.

You can learn these with little possibility of excessive damage to your body. A unique way to start is to practice over foam cubes or in a pool. You will then get a feel for what it is like and understand which muscles you are using.

Tuck

Pike

Layout

Wall flip

On to the Parkour

With these four tricks, you can start your discipline into the world of parkour. Remember that this is a dangerous athletic experience and should not be done at extreme heights or dangers without a good bit of practice beforehand.

Parkour has seen a beautiful rise from its beginning in the French military. It has even found its way into cinema across the world.

There is a career with this practice and discipline to earn from doing it. Stay true to yourself and parkour on! Did we help you to understand parkour flips better? Let us know in the comments below!

Featured Photo by Liam Shaw on Unsplash

Feiyue Martial Arts Shoe Review

Feiyue-Martial-Arts-Shoes

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Intro

The brand Feiyue got its start in the 1920s in Shanghai, China. By the 1930s, Feiyue, which means “Great Leap Forward” or “Flying Forward” were producing a shoe that had gained a reputation for being flexible, comfortable and robust, perfect for athletes and martial artists. Feiyue shoes quickly became a popular choice. And they were even worn by performers during the Opening Ceremony of the 2008 Summer Olympic Games in Beijing to highlight Chinese culture. Today, they are still an immensely popular brand among martial artists, particularly wushu practitioners and Shaolin monks. And they still hold a prominent position in Chinese athletics.

Now you can add the parkour community to the list that has adopted this simple, highly flexible, low cost shoe. Although somewhat polarizing, Feiyues are absolutely adored by many traceurs. If you’ve been in the parkour community for any length of time, it is hard to not come across them or hear them being recommended by someone.

Continue on to the rest of the review to find out why they’ve become so popular.

Comfort

Feiyues are certainly far different from the average running shoe. Due to the lack of cushioning (we’ll talk more about this later) your feet may be sore from wearing them simply because they aren’t strong enough. If you aren’t used to minimalist shoes, give it some time for your feet to get stronger and adapt. Otherwise, I find them to be quite comfortable and so do most others. They do have a somewhat wider fit. If you find that they aren’t quite snug enough a trick is to lace them up with the “over and under” method rather than the typical criss cross style.  The canvas upper provides acceptable breathability. The laces end further down on the foot than most other shoes, around the top of the arch of your foot. This isn’t uncomfortable, but it does give them a different feel.

Flexibility / Sensitivity

Feiyues are incredibly flexible. This is one of their biggest strengths. You can bend, twist, and crumple the sole up in any way you want. Similarly, the thin canvas upper provides unimpeded ankle flexibility. However, this obviously comes at the cost of no ankle support. This is an advantage to most that are looking to buy this type of shoe though.

Feiyues are also incredibly sensitive compared to your run of the mill running shoes. You can feel pretty much everything underneath them. This sensitivity makes balancing on rails very fun when you combine it with the incredible flexibility they exhibit. To a small extent, the shoe is capable of bending around rails. They are also great for precision, provided you have good landing technique.

Cushioning

Feiyue-Cushioning

Zero. Okay, technically there is a little bit of cushioning provided. However, Feiyues are going to do very little in regards to absorbing shock. It’s not what they were designed for. If your parkour training includes lots of drops and heavy impacts your technique will need to be spot on to avoid injury. Because Feiyues won’t cover up any mistakes in technique, they can be very useful for practicing landings, even if don’t use them as your primary parkour shoe. This is largely what I’ve used them for in the past.

If you are just transitioning to a shoe with this minimal level of padding, please take it very slow at first. If you want a pair of shoes that will give you a little more protection but are still minimalist leaning, check out Asics’ Onitsuka Tiger Ultimate 81s.

Weight

Given the simplicity and minimalist nature of Feiyues, you would be correct in assuming that they are very light. However, they definitely aren’t the absolute lightest out there you could find. This is because of the slab of rubber they use for the sole. The balance of the shoe is actually a little more exaggerated than normal running shoes as there is really no weight above the sole of the shoe. For martial artists, balance is everything. Without it, it’s hard to achieve proper stance, which makes executing moves more complicated. In addition, the light weight of the shoes allow for faster footwork and leg speed, a must for martial arts.

Grip

Feiyue-Sole-Grip

Overall, the grip on Feiyues is pretty good to great, but don’t expect something like Five Ten rubber. They grip well on most surfaces, although they struggle a lot in wet conditions. If you have good technique the grip will be more than enough though. After all, grip is seriously important in parkour if you are making more difficult and riskier jumps. One slip could result in major bodily harm, so finding a shoe with great grip is crucial. That’s why Feiyue shoes are one of the best in the business. The real issue with the sole is the durability.

Durability

The grip wears down quickly with any sort of heavy training, especially cat leaps and wall runs. The rest of the shoe is pretty durable and includes metal eyelets. Nothing is likely to cause you any real problems before the grip is completely destroyed, which isn’t necessarily saying very much. In isolation, I would rate the durability as poor, but for the price you can’t really expect very much. Considering you could buy several pairs of Feiyues for the same price as most other parkour shoes, the durability issue disappears.

Recap

In the parkour world, Feiyues are pretty unique. It’s hard to find a comparable shoe with the same combination of flexibility, sensitivity, and grip at such a low cost. The durability is poor, but for the price it doesn’t really matter all that much. Given this, it is easy to recommend trying Feiyues out, but beginners should be very cautious or perhaps wait until they are a little more experienced. Those who have more experience should give Feiyues a try. You never know, you might like them much better than the shoes you normally wear, whether they are for martial arts or for parkour. If anything else, you can use them as a reliable practice shoe that will take the brunt of wear and tear,  all while being inexpensive to replace. For those looking for an affordable alternative to Vibrams, Feiyues are nearly unbeatable.

Note: Opt for the black version. The white ones look horrible after a very short time.

What Is Tempest Freerunning Academy

The goal of the Tempest Freerunning Academy is "Tru Freedom Thru Movement," and that sums up the idea behind the sport of freerunning as well. Freerunning, like Parkour - a similar extreme sport - consists of moving from one location to another by the shortest path possible, with movements that include running, jumping, vaulting, and swinging.

Both are derived from military training obstacle courses and ninja warrior moves, but there are some differences. Freerunning allows participants to add creative and stylistic acrobatic moves and flips while Parkour is more practical and focused on reaching the objective as quickly as possible.

Students at the Tempest Freerunning Academy learn the basic techniques of both sports at the gym's state-of-the-art facility. Classes are graded according to age and skill levels and are taught by experienced instructors. Skills are tested every ten weeks and the regular assessments give students the chance to move up to more advanced levels. Open gym sessions are a chance for students to have fun and gain practice before taking their skills to real-world environments.

What Is Free Running?

Freerunning, like its better-known cousin Parkour, is a way of covering the distance between two points by running, jumping, vaulting over obstacles, swinging, flipping, and using whatever means come to hand to reach the destination. As extreme sports that specialize in using features of urban and rural landscapes, freerunning and Parkour have attracted attention because of their spectacular and acrobatic movements.

Parkour And Freerunning: What's The Difference?

Both Parkour and freerunning are derived from military obstacle courses used for training, but there are some important differences. While Parkour is concerned with maximizing efficiency to cover the designated distance, freerunning adds all kinds of stylistic touches like flips and acrobatic moves. It allows for creative interaction with the environment. Other sources of inspiration for the sport are ninja training and movie stunts.

Freerunning and Parkour both provide complete body workouts - developing coordination, balance, and total-body strength. They require mental focus as well. Both forms of sport help the runner to overcome both mental and physical barriers. Freerunning is more of a lifestyle than a sport, and the best part is that anyone can learn. All you need is a pair of gym shoes, courage, and imagination.

About The Tempest Freerunning Academy

The Tempest Freerunning Academy is the first school for Parkour and freerunning in the state of California. The Academy now has four locations in two states:

  • Chatsworth, CA
  • Hawthorne, CA
  • Vista, CA
  • Southlake, Texas
person doing backward jump

image via: unsplash.com

The Academy offers freerunning and Parkour classes at all levels, from beginner to advanced. These give students a solid foundation on which to build as they move up in their level of skill in the sport. Coaches at the academy are all professionals with experience in TV, films, and events. Like the Parkour and freerunning community in general, they are generous with their advice and tips for learners.

The Tempest Freerunning Academy gym offers a training facility where freerunners can learn the basic skills before moving on to real-world environments and competitions. The Academy's goal is for students to reach "Tru Freedom Thru Movement." This means facing their fears and challenges and overcoming all obstacles - or better yet, using obstacles to vault to the next level.

Information About Classes And More

Classes at the Tempest Freerunning Academy are based on age and skill level, starting with beginners who have no experience at all. While most classes for children are for the 9 to 16-year-old age group, kids can begin as early as four years of age with Kinderkour.

Students move up through the different levels after mastering each class. For experienced freerunners, there are open gym hours and “jams” for training and socializing with other runners and Parkour traceurs (practitioners). The final stage in the training is a reflection of the ethics of the sport and involves sharing the knowledge gained with the community.

Freerunning Classes At The Tempest Academy

All classes are available for students ages 9 to 16 and for adults. Students build up their skills as they progress through the classes to the final level when they become Tempest Ambassadors. The final level emphasizes giving back to the community when students learn how to explain Parkour moves in order to teach them to others.

Every ten weeks, testing sessions assign students to bands which determine their skill level and the appropriate class. The sessions test students' mastery of a skill set. This is the opportunity for students to move up through the levels. Each level is associated with a color that identifies the student's skill level.

The only equipment students need is a pair of gym shoes. No special clothes or gear are needed, though clothing should be loose enough to allow freedom of movement. A T-shirt and sweatpants will be just fine. Jewelry should be removed to avoid any distractions or hazards.

man exercising

image via: maxpixel.net

Beginners

Parkour All Day

Train Hard, Kong Harder

Hardcore Parkour

Flip N Flow

I Am A Freerunner

Tru Freedom

Goldfish Gangsta

Classes For Very Young Children

Open Gym

Monitored Kids' Open Gym

Mixed Open Gym

Open Gym

Can Minors Take Freerunning Classes?

Safety Concerns

Conclusion

Freerunning is a spectacular sport that can become addictive. In fact, for most enthusiasts, it is more of a lifestyle and a frame of mind than a sport. The Tempest Freerunning Academy teaches students of all ages the basic movements as well as advanced skills for a real-world environment. The gym has classes for all ages and skill levels, as well as open gym sessions when students can play and practice moves.

Everyone has dreamt at some point in their lives of being a ninja warrior, leaping catlike between barriers and obstacles to reach that seemingly impossible goal. At the Tempest Freerunning Academy, students can learn the technical skills and mental focus to help them reach their objectives.

Best Parkour Gloves – A Comprehensive Guide

Much attention and discussion is paid to finding the best shoes for parkour, but relatively little attention is paid to finding the best gloves for parkour. Parkour is a high impact sport and stressful for the entire body. And the hands are certainly no exception. After all, rough concrete, pavement, metal pipes, and splintering wooden beams aren’t exactly known for being easy on hands. After enduring the wear and tear that one’s hands inevitably undergo during training, many beginners and experienced practitioners alike think of using gloves.

But is it a good idea to use parkour gloves? And if so, what are the best gloves for parkour? These aren’t necessarily easy questions to answer, but let’s start with the first one.

Should I Use Gloves For Parkour?

Whether to wear gloves or not when training parkour is a pretty controversial topic in the parkour community. It is a question that inevitably comes up in every forum. In many other sports and disciplines, if gloves are needed for grip, protection, or to enhance performance, there is no debate about whether to use them or not. In contrast, it is generally argued that gloves should not be used for parkour. There are three important reasons why.

Grip
In many cases, your bare hands will actually have better overall grip. You don’t have to worry about your hands moving around inside the gloves or worse the gloves failing in some way.

Sensitivity
Even the thinnest and most sensitive gloves are far worse than bare hands for feeling everything around you. Gloves reduce the feedback you get from different surfaces. This can reduce control and make it harder to adapt mid technique since you might not be able to feel a surface change subtly.

Sweat

It’s certainly not essential to wear gloves during the activity, but with excessive movement and grip, your hands can soon become sweaty. Fortunately, the three pairs of gloves we’ve discovered are all sweatproof. They’re also breathable to reduce your chances of slipping and help improve your comfort every time you wear them.

Conditioning
Over time your hands will toughen up and become conditioned for parkour.

Advantages of Using Gloves

While gloves certainly have disadvantages, they also undoubtedly have some advantages. And unlike some who think that gloves should never be used for parkour, I think they have their uses in certain circumstances.

Injuries
Cuts, blisters, and bruises can easily end training and force practitioners to wait until they are healed. Gloves can let you get back to training sooner or prevent injuries from occurring in the first place.

Technique Drills
Some techniques and certain environments are simply brutal on your hands and even experienced traceurs will only be able to endure so much. If you are practicing the same move over and over and it is punishing your hands, gloves can be a very useful training tool.

Winter Training
Everyone who has trained in a cold environment knows how quickly your hands can start to feel numb and how much this limits your training. Gloves can make the difference between being able to train during harsh weather or not.

Extenuating Circumstances
Some people are not willing to condition their hands or simply unable to because of things like their profession.

Parkour Glove Recommendations

If you are shopping for a pair of gloves, there are several important features to look for. Gloves should provide a high degree of sensitivity for the fingertips, have a high grip material throughout the palm, be durable, and have a secure fit.

Full Finger Fitness Gloves
parkour gloves

These full-finger fitness gloves provide an excellent grip and design that adapts to your hand’s shape and size. Developed with a curving motion, these fitness gloves offer exceptional flexibility and comfort, so you are always protected. Thanks to the relief pads present throughout the entire gloves, you won’t feel any impact or soreness on your hands throughout any of your moves. If you’re prone to sweating, you’ll appreciate the terrycloth pads within the gloves to keep your hands dry and odor-free.

RDX Competition Exercise Gloves
Parkour gloves

These are another pair of gloves suitable for parkour. They’re designed with a breathable material to ensure cool air remains trapped in the gloves, and moisture and warmth can escape. RDX designed these exercise gloves with a supreme grip at its core. That’s why these gloves feature suede leather along the palm to provide an exceptional grip, no matter the surface you come into contact with. However, don’t fear that the leather features limits your flexibility as the handstitched elements offer exceptional resilience all the time you wear these gloves.

Broner Wool Acrylic Glove Mitts
parkourconvetiblemittens

For colder weather, you will need warmer gloves. While they have their limitations and you will need to modify your training, it is simply part of the deal if you want to train during certain conditions. At the very least, they are useful for putting on and warming or rewarming your hands up during breaks in training.

Alternatives to Using Gloves

If you want to avoid using gloves or whatever reason, there are several things you can do to deal with the demands of parkour on your hands.

Calluses
Calluses can protect the hand but they also have a tendency to tear off. This is both annoying and painful if you want to continue training. The best advice is to be proactive. You can reduce calluses in a number of ways and lessen the chances of them tearing. The simplest way is to use a cheap and widely available pumice stone to sand them down.

Injuries
Small cuts can be protected with band aids. Generic athletic tape is highly useful for very minor scrapes and injuries. It can also be used for preventative measures. Here is a simple tutorial depicting how to tape a hand if a callous has or is about to tear.

After Training Sessions johuatreeclimbingsalve
There are a variety of salves, balms, and oils that can be useful for taking care of your hands. Joshua Tree’s Climbing Salve and Climb On! Bar are both highly regarded in the climbing and CrossFit communities.

In Conclusion

Unfortunately, there is no real answer as to whether or not you should wear parkour gloves when training. The topic is likely to remain a hotly debated issue though I do think they can be incredibly useful in some instances. Really, it is a question you should answer for yourself. If you haven’t tried using gloves before, pick up a pair and see if you get any value out of them. If you practice in gloves all the time, try taking a break from using them. See what impact it has and if they are really needed.

Do you use gloves for parkour? What is your hand care routine like? Leave a message in the comments.

Aerial Acrobatics Vs. Parkour: What’s the Difference?

In the last 50 years, there has been significant growth in the amount and scope of fitness programs in the US. Rather than simply lifting some weights or hopping on a treadmill, we have a plethora of options when deciding how to burn some calories. Things like spin classes, yoga, Pilates, and martial arts-based fitness have become extremely popular. Another trend in fitness is to use skills or apparatus typically seen in the circus or other performing arts in fitness programs. Because of this trend, things like aerial acrobatics, also called aerial arts, are now accessible to the average person.

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About Aerial Acrobatics


Another part of the trend to leave the standard home treadmill behind is the popularity of less-organized exercise programs. The rise of freerunning and parkour has inspired lots of people to go outside and use their environment to get fit. Competitions like Ninja Warrior are based on the idea of using natural terrain and obstacles to build strength, endurance, and flexibility.

There is a seemingly endless list of fitness programs available right now, all based on different disciplines or creative mediums. Your local gym or community center may offer ballet-based classes, martial arts-based programs, and even pole dancing as fitness. There are schools for children that teach freerunning and parkour, and there are aerial acrobatics classes that train children and adults in the circus arts of silks, trapeze, lyra, and rope. For this article, we’ll focus on 2 of these new programs to hit gyms across the US—aerial acrobatics and parkour.

What Is Aerial Acrobatics?

The term “aerial” in the circus refers to the use of any apparatus that hangs from the ceiling. The disciple of aerial arts includes trapeze (flying and stationary), silks, rope, lyra, cube, straps, and other apparatus designed for special performances. Each apparatus has a set of moves or skills that have been designed just for that apparatus. Acrobatics is just a word for tumbling and flipping. Therefore aerial acrobatics is flipping and tumbling in the air.


The trapeze and the rope have been around for almost 200 years. Using other apparatus like the lyra are also part of circus tradition. The silks are a new apparatus that came to popularity along with Cirque du Soleil in the 1990s. The skills for them are the result of years of trial and error by circus performers who spend hours working out new ways to use their apparatus. Audiences love to see performers “fly,” so the performers are constantly coming up with newer and better skills. Because aerial arts originated as a performance art, all of the moves are intended to be strung together in sequence to create a routine. However, when broken down, they can be used for fitness as well. Here is a breakdown of the main apparatus and how they are used.

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The silks, or tissue, is a long span of fabric that is doubled over and hung from an anchor point. This results in 2 lengths of fabric that can be climbed, twisted around the body, or used to spin or swing.

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A trapeze is a bar fixed between two ropes and hung from the ceiling. It can be used stationary or it can swing. The swinging or “flying” trapeze is used by 2 or more aerialists. They swing in broad arcs high above the ground and make “passes,” which means transferring from one trapeze to another in the air. Passes can include flips and twists. The stationary trapeze can be used to hang multiple aerialists, to perform complicated poses, or to swing and flip.

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The lyra is a metal hoop that can spin. One or more aerialists can use it to pose, climb, and swing. It can be raised or lowered on its anchor point.

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The rope is mostly self-explanatory. It’s made of material designed not to rub the skin on the aerialist’s hands too badly. They also usually feature a looped hand-hold and can spin. Aerialists can climb, spin, or pose in it.

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The straps are similar to the silks but can be wrapped tighter. Typically, you see more male aerialists using the straps and more female aerialists using the silks.

Cube and Other

Basically, any shape that can be fabricated out of metal and hung from the ceiling can be used as a performance apparatus. Special apparatus have been made to look like chairs, stars, cubes, and many other shapes.

How Can I Train as an Aerialist?

Performers begin their training as an aerialist in the same way an athlete trains—by building strength and agility. If you are planning to be a performer, you need to start by building up a lot of strength while maintaining a lean body that is very flexible. You may want to employ a personal trainer to help you develop an exercise regimen that works for you. Once you are fit enough, you can enroll in an aerial arts class. Your class may focus on one apparatus or several and will start with the basics for that apparatus and work toward more advanced skills.

Aerial Performance vs. Aerial Fitness


As with most sports or fitness programs, you can choose to pursue aerial acrobatics as a career or it can just be part of your fitness regimen. Many communities have dance school or sports centers that offer aerial classes just for exercise. You can take a silks class that teaches strength and flexibility. Some have started offering lyra and even trapeze. There are circus schools that allow the general population to take a flying trapeze class for fun. The use of these apparatus can help you build strength and endurance. They are a great addition to any fitness program. If you love it enough, you may decide to pursue the aerial arts as a career. If you do, there are several circus schools across the country where you can train to be a professional aerialist. It takes years and a lot of discipline to be a successful aerial acrobat, but it can be an exciting career.

About Parkour

man doing a parkour exhibition

Image via Pexels

Parkour is the practice of moving through the environment and seeing the objects in that environment as obstacles. The goal is to find a creative way to move through the space. Parkour was born in France by a father and son who trained on obstacle courses in the military. They brought that concept, including the idea of focus and discipline while moving, to the art of Parkour. Some people think parkour and freerunning are the same things, but they have very different philosophies. Parkour is based on focus, discipline, and mastering your environment, while freerunning is more about performance and fun. Parkour now has thousands of participants, now called traceurs, around the world.


Like aerial acrobatics, parkour has a list of skills, or moves, that were developed over time by those who created the discipline. Most of the moves in parkour are named after how they are performed and what they look like. There is no apparatus for parkour because it relies on the environment. To practice parkour, you usually join a group and find locations with a lot of interesting obstacles. Parkour groups tend to know about locations in their community that have great obstacles to work around.


The creator of Parkour, David Belle, has been insistent that parkour not turn into a competitive sport. He believes this goes against the philosophy of parkour, which is to challenge yourself to be the best you be, to focus on the environment and find creative ways through it, and to grow in mental and physical strength. He believes everyone in any parkour group is equal and no one should be seen as better. Everyone advances together. This philosophy doesn’t work in a competitive environment. However, in spite of his objections, England recognized parkour as an official sport in 2017.

What Are Some Parkour Moves?


Here are some basic moves for those starting parkour:

Jumping

Jumping Over

Vaulting

Aerial Acrobatics Vs. Parkour: What's the Difference?


Woman doing aerial hoop acrobatics

Image by kerttu from Pixabay 

The difference between aerial acrobatics and parkour is very obvious once you do a little research on each of them. Parkour is a mental philosophy and much as it is a physical activity. It’s also performed mostly on the ground. Although it does involve vaulting into flips and occasionally swinging from things, you don’t stay off the ground for very long. Parkour has no dedicated apparatus. You can do parkour in any environment on whatever is in that area. Aerial acrobatics involves apparatus and skills that keep you off the ground for the entire time. Sometimes aerial acrobatics routines include floor work, but most of their skills are done in the air. You also must have a specific apparatus to do aerial acrobatics. In performance, even if aerialists are performing on what looks like everyday objects such as ladders or scaffolding, they are actually specially designed apparatus.

The philosophies of aerial acrobatics and parkour are also very different. Parkour is supposed to be about growing your mind through physical activity. It’s a very solitary activity when you’re in motion. There’s no audience, just your group and you are not competing. However, aerial acrobatics is mostly a performance art. There are aerial classes just for fitness, but most training in aerial acrobatics is for performance. There are also aerial acrobatics competitions.

The one thing parkour and aerial acrobatics have in common is that, in their inception, they required their founders to look at an obstacle or apparatus and figure out an interesting way to use it and move around and in it. The first aerialists had to look at a rope or a length of fabric and figure out how to climb it in a way no one had ever climbed it before. They had to figure out how to hang from or pass someone up a metal hoop in a nontraditional way. In this way, when aerialists invent new ways to use their apparatus, they are taking a page from parkour.

Conclusion


For the most part, aerial acrobatics and parkour are very different disciplines. Parkour is very mental, in its truest form, and is non-competitive. Aerial acrobatics is very much for show. Parkour is done on the ground, where aerial acrobatics takes place high above the ground. On the surface, they seem very different. However, like any creative activity, they share roots. They are both rooted in the fact that humans love to push themselves, to see if our bodies can do what seems impossible. They are both about creative movement. This is the one similarity between 2 otherwise very different disciplines.

Featured Image: Image by Jills from Pixabay

Top 10 Best Parkour Training Tips That Every Parkour Athlete Should Use

man leaping on brown wooden platform

Image via unsplash

Are you ready for some hardcore parkour? Parkour is an exciting and unique sport nearly anyone can practice. Whether you are looking to find an easy and engaging way to exercise more, trying to get in shape, or are already an avid parkour enthusiast in need of new parkour training strategies, this article is here to help. We have compiled a list of the ten best parkour training practices and strategies, perfect for people of all parkour skill levels.

What are you waiting for? Let’sparkour!

Parkour FAQ

1. What Is Parkour?

2. Where did Parkour Come From?

3. Who Can Practice Parkour?

4. Why Should You Devote Time to Parkour Training?

5. Does It Cost Anything to Practice Training?

How We Reviewed

The following products were reviewed based on the following parameters: overall benefits, expected takeaways, and potential hazards to watch out for. We scoured the internet to come up with the best information for each parkour training method just for you.

Overall Price Range of This Product (and Similar Products)

Parkour is an incredibly affordable sport. You can even do it without shoes! You don't need to spend any money at all on training.

What We Reviewed

  • Body Weight Training
  • Running
  • Weight Lifting
  • Stretching
  • Healthy Diet
  • Good Shoes
  • Perfect Your Jump
  • Master Your Landing
  • Learn the Shoulder Roll
  • Run Up Walls

Body Weight Training

Benefits

Strength training with weights is an excellent parkour training element. Building strength in arm, leg, and core muscles will enable you to do all sorts of additional moves and tricks. The amount of weight you lift is not as important as the number of reps you do; make sure that in coordination with bodyweight training, you include other types of cardio and stretching.

Expected Takeaways

  • Stronger specific muscles          
  • Focus on specific areas of the body
  • Better lifting and climbing ability

Potential Hazards to Watch Out For

  • Cost of free weights or gym membership
  • Using too much weight and straining muscles
  • Focusing more on weight lifting and neglecting cardio

Running

Benefits

Running is a fantastic part of parkour training. While you may not run for long distances at a time during parkour, you can use running to build your endurance, cardio, and stamina. Try to run for 7-10 miles each week whether or not you decide to use a significant amount of running in your parkour practice. If you cannot bring yourself to run long distances, try joining a sport that includes running, like lacrosse or soccer.

Expected Takeaways

  • Better stamina 
  • Cardio workouts are good for overall health
  • Better able to include sprints or running in your parkour practice

Potential Hazards to Watch Out For

  • Over-training your muscles and lungs
  • You may hate running 

Weight Lifting

Benefits

Weightlifting focuses on building muscles in your arms. Use whatever style or weight of free weights or machines to build your weight stamina. Do multiple reps of each weight lift on both sides, but don’t overdo it, or you’ll be too sore to continue with your parkour training.

Expected Takeaways

  • Stronger arms    
  • Ability to focus on specific elements of your arms
  • Better ability to lift yourself over objects or lift objects out of your way

Potential Hazards to Watch Out For

  • An expense of free weights, gym membership, or machines
  • Easy to overdo it without noticing
  • May injure yourself if you lift weights incorrectly

Stretching

Benefits

Stretching is an essential element of training. Whatever else your parkour training workout includes, stretching is a must. It warms your muscles up before weights, cardio, or other workouts. You also might lose muscle strength if you don’t stretch before beginning your workout.


Even if you feel like you are mostly running and jumping in your parkour practice, make sure you stretch every element of your body. If you don’t know how to stretch, read a manual, hire a trainer, or watch videos to make sure you’re getting your movements right.

Expected Takeaways

  • Stronger muscles that maintain strength better 
  • Warmed muscles ready to work
  • All muscles get warmed up even if you only use some muscle groups in your actual parkour training and practice

Potential Hazards to Watch Out For

  • If you don’t know the correct stretches or methods, you can hurt yourself
  • Stretching may be boring

Healthy Diet

Benefits

Although it is not parkour-specific, eating a healthy diet is a key and an often overlooked component of training. This can be one of the most difficult aspects of parkour training to truly embrace because it is not centered around physical training, and it involves changing your entire lifestyle.


A diet high in carbs and following vegan regulations is the very best for parkour practice and training. Fruits, vegetables, and cooked carbs are great meal options, but make sure you are also drinking plenty of water. This will keep your energy up as you practice all your moves.

Expected Takeaways

  • Opportunity to experiment with new foods and recipes
  • Will feel better overall
  • Higher energy levels

Potential Hazards to Watch Out For

  • Your body may react poorly to unfamiliar foods
  • Easy to miss essential nutrients in a vegan diet
  • May take time to learn new foods and recipes you like

Good Shoes

Benefits

Although it is possible to do parkour training and practice without shoes, good shoes provide support and grip for your feet. Good shoes make it easier for your feet to grip all sorts of surfaces while doing parkour, and some brands even make shoes specific for parkour training.

Expected Takeaways

  • Better foot support          
  • Easier to safely jump on and off different types of surfaces

Potential Hazards to Watch Out For

  • Soles might not be flexible enough
  • May spend more money than necessary
  • Might be heavy and throw off your balance

Perfect Your Jump

Benefits

Jumping is a major component of parkour and should be a big part of your parkour training. You can perfect your jumps almost anywhere! Steps are perfect for jumping but start by jumping up the stairs instead of jumping down.
 
Stand upright with your back straight and jump just a step or two first, landing on your toes. As you get more confident with your jumps, add stairs and practice jumping in other locations.

Expected Takeaways

  • Better at jumping      
  • Jump stamina will increase and you will be able to do multiple jumps in a row

Potential Hazards to Watch Out For

  • Could fall if you jump too high
  • Easy to overshoot your jump destination
  • Could be difficult to find safe places to jump

Master Your Landing

Benefits

If you are jumping during your training, you will need to know how to land effectively and safely. To land successfully, remember to tuck, extend, and absorb. Just in case you find yourself falling in the midst of your landing, extend your arms just in case to catch yourself.

Expected Takeaways

  • Safer landings          
  • More confidence in jumping

Potential Hazards to Watch Out For

  • Could  fall
  • Need to fall to completely practice landings

Learn the Shoulder Roll

Benefits

A shoulder roll is another element to parkour training and safe landings after jumps or unexpected hazards. Parkour is a fast-moving sport, so you always need to be prepared in case you lose your balance or encounter an unexpected obstacle.


To do a shoulder roll, you’ll need to tuck your hands and head in and roll diagonally from your shoulder to your hip. This will protect your head and face from getting hurt in case you fall or stumble.

Expected Takeaways

  • Safer landings      
  • Added protection
  • You’ll be prepared for every possibility in parkour

Potential Hazards to Watch Out For

  • May hurt your shoulder
  • Takes practice to get right

Run Up Wall

Benefits

Running up walls is one of the most impressive parkour moves and including some tricks into your parkour training will make you an excellent parkour practitioner. When you start your practice running up walls, start with an easy and short wall. Begin by getting a good running start towards the wall, kick up with your foot, reach up and grab the top of the wall to pull yourself over.

Expected Takeaways

  • Ability to do slick tricks for friends and family
  • A great way to use your weight training and running practice
  • A fun way to build arm strength and running stamina

Potential Hazards to Watch Out For

  • Could be dangerous if you start with a wall that is too high
  • Need to be confident to get a good approach
  • May become too famous if your wall jumps get online!

The Verdict

All the previous elements can be effectively used in your training. Vary your workouts by including cardio, weight elements, and parkour specific moves to make sure you are getting the most out of your parkour training. Whether you practice parkour for fun or are the next parkour YouTube star, these parkour training tips will help and inspire you.

Best Backpack For Parkour In The Market

Parkour (and its fancier cousin, Freerunning) is fast becoming one of the most accessible sports. Unlike most sports, you don't need a ball, protective equipment, a team, or any specialized field. Just put a pair of shoes on and you're ready to take part in quickly traversing the terrain you're in. Whether you are making your way downtown, running through the wilderness, or running through hallways, Parkour is all about speed and efficiency. When a Parkour practitioner, or traceur, wants to bring supplies, the best backpack won't be the same one they use for class. The process for choosing a Parkour backpack has to have mobility in mind.

What To Consider While Choosing A Parkour Backpack

man with his backpack

Image Source: Pexels

Size and Shape - When choosing the best Parkour backpack, the first thing to keep an eye for are bags that have the right size and shape. Seeing as Parkour involves a lot of running, jumping, climbing, and twisting around, a lightweight bag is necessary. Larger bags can throw a traceur (Parkour practitioner) off balance.

 

Durability - After choosing the right size backpack, you will want to ensure that that the bag is durable. Parkour, especially when performed in urban environments, can involve a lot of rolling or sliding past different surfaces. These surfaces range from concrete, metal, stone, brick, or wood, and this takes a toll on the backpack itself.

 

The best Parkour backpack will be made of thicker material, such as Kevlar or any scratch resistant material that can take a beating. Good Parkour backpacks are also waterproof to stand up to rain and puddles.

 

Style - The best Parkour backpacks also reflect the personality of the person wearing it. Choosing the right color, shape, and style is important. A unique bag will set you apart from every other traceur; especially in cities with a thriving Parkour scene. The best packs will also contain whatever it is that an individual needs and values for their run, such as water bladders or cellphone holders.

 

Fit - The ideal Parkour bag has an ergonomic fit, meaning that it fits snugly to the body. Just like a bag that's too big, a bag that swings around on your back can throw you off balance when running and jumping. Also a loose strap or bag can catch onto a rail, branch, or any protruding object. That leads to falling, or worse- choking injuries.

Other Criteria For The Best Parkour Backpack

someone holding a back pack

Image Source: Pexels

Versatility - Ability to be useful in a variety of different settings and uses.

 

Price - Depending on how serious you are about Parkour, will determine whether you need a budget friendly bag or need to focus on functionality. A cheap bag may be flimsy or have limited space. A bag that is more suitable may be too expensive. Every runner has to choose the bag that suits their needs.

 

Comfort - An uncomfortable bag can wear on you and cut your run short.

 

Storage Capability - The more a bag can store, the more useful the bag is. Seeing as the best Parkour Backpacks are smaller, this often creates a unique challenge.

Parkour Backpacks Vs. Regular Backpacks

While a good Parkour Backpack can also be useful for students, daytrippers, or public commuters, a regular backpack won't be of much use to traceurs. The best Parkour Backpacks are small and sleek whereas most backpacks are too large to be comfortably used during Parkour or Freerunning. They can easily get caught on something. A regular backpack is more useful to travelers, students with a heavy workload, or anyone that needs sheer storage capability over anything else. The best Parkour Backpack is for someone focused on mobility.

Why Do People Use A Backpack For Parkour?

When running at the brisk pace used for Parkour and Freerunning, storing things in your pockets isn't always the best idea. The pockets may be thin and small, which could lead to the contents uncomfortably scraping against your legs or falling out altogether. Depending on the type of shorts or pants you're wearing, you may not even have a lot of pocket space. A good backpack gives you storage space for essentials without inhibiting your run.

Parkour Essentials For The Best Backpack

man with orange backpack

Image Source: Pexels

While all you need for a good Parkour session are comfortable running shoes, there are some items that can serve a traceur or freerunner well. These items are:

  • First Aid Kits-For scrapes and bruises that can happen from the occasional slip and trip
  • Water Bottle- To stay hydrated on the go
  • Camera- To document your run if you're so inclined
  • Mp3 Player and Headphones-To play the tunes that keep you motivated
  • Cellphone and Charger- To ensure you can stay connected, even on the run
  • Wallet and Keys-In case you can't or won't put them in your pocket
  • Rope-To help get around certain obstacles

Who Else Would Benefit From The Best Parkour Backpack

Besides a traceur or freerunner, many people would enjoy a small lightweight backpack. Someone who uses public transportation to go to school or work also often use packs to carry items that won't fit in their pockets such as their lunch, extra pairs of socks, paperwork, notebooks, or small tools. A large backpack would complicate their commute on crowded buses and trains. Day trip travelers who do a lot of walking fall in the same category. A Parkour pack can keep anyone light on their feet and ready to maneuver.

The Best Backpack For Parkour

The best backpack for Parkour may come in a multitude of sizes and shapes but below are some of the top backpacks available for Parkour, Freerunning, or Hiking purposes. We will evaluate the best backpacks by price, durability, size, and overall quality on a 5 point scale.

  • Fastbreak's Parkour Aerial Pack
  • Camelbak Hydration
  • Osprey Packs Daylite Backpack

Fastbreak's Parkour Aerial Pack

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Durability: 2 out of 5 Stars

The Aerial Pack won't crumble at the slightest pressure, but nothing really sets it apart as far as durability goes. One point of caution: the internal contents of the bag aren't as protected as they can be, so even if the bag holds up, the contents may not. Roll with caution.

Size: 4 out of 5 Stars

The medium size of this bag can fit 10 liters of content inside, making it a fairly roomy bag. Combined with all of the Aerial Pack's compartments, it can hold a fair amount of content in an organized fashion.

Overall: 3.5 out of 5 Stars

Fastbreak's Parkour Aerial Pack is a solid investment for more serious practitioners, and may very well be one of the best backpacks out, but it may not hold up to extensive rolling and collisions.

Camelbak Classic Hydration Pack

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Durability: 2 out of 5 Stars

Unlike Fastbreak's bag, Camelbak's backpacks were created with hikers in mind, not traceurs. The major selling point of their bags are portable water for long hikes in the wilderness, and not high impact running in downtown areas or college campuses. You can easily damage the accessories on the bag by “going too hard.”

Size: 4 out of 5 Stars

The Hydration Pack is lightweight and stays in place on your back. Great for freerunners who pull off flips after a dead sprint and need not to have to compensate for weight swinging around on the back. The water bladder on the bag is removable, which can make the bag even smaller.

Overall: 3 out of 5 Stars

The bag is fairly low priced with all of its functionality considered, it's lightweight, and it's stable.

Osprey Packs Daylite Backpack

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Durability: 3 out of 5 Stars

Made with padding and mesh, Osprey's bag is both durable and comfortable. It doesn't have a rigid frame, so it still has limits, but should suit the purposes of most people that use it.

Size: 4 out of 5 Stars

They clearly made the bag with the run in mind. It's compact, with several compartments. If this bag is too small for your needs, it can be attached to larger Osprey bags to further increase the storage capacity and compartmentalization.

Overall: 4 out of 5 Stars

More than the Camelbak or Fastbreak packs, this bag is a traceur's backpack. Versatile, compact, affordable, and comfortable.

Conclusion

Criteria that helps anybody choose their personal best backpack will differ as needs do. If you are into Parkour or Freerunning, your needs will include a backpack that doesn't hinder you from the running, sliding, flipping, jumping, and rolling that comes with your territory. Choose the best backpack with your lifestyle in mind.

Obstacle Course Ideas for Parkour Training

If you have watched American Ninja or World Chase Tag championship, then you must have realized that obstacle courses are cool. Not only are they good as competitive events but also as a training methods for parkour. There are many obstacle course ideas for your parkour training, so we compiled the 10 best and most creative ones for you.

Parkour and Obstacle Courses


man jumping on high wall bricks

Image Via Pexels

Before we go to our list of obstacle course ideas for parkour, let's define a few terms first.

First, what is parkour? Parkour is an art form, movement, workout, exercise, and philosophy rolled into one. In basic terms, parkour is the art of displacement, or moving from point A to point B in the smoothest, fastest, and most efficient way possible. Parkour involves traversing obstacles by going through, under, over, or around them. As a physical workout, parkour involves running, jumping, leaping, climbing, and swinging. As a philosophy, parkour encourages overcoming life's obstacles, and self-improvement through incremental progression via training.

Next, what is an obstacle course? An obstacle course is a series of physical hurdles that an individual must overcome while being timed. These obstacles can include rope ladders, elevated ramps, crawlspaces, etc. An obstacle course may include climbing, running, crawling, jumping, swinging, and sometimes even swimming.

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Overcoming Obstacles Together


Parkour and obstacle courses are perfect for each other because they share the same goals.

Overcoming Obstacles

Focus

Physical Conditioning

Mental Sharpness

Fairness and Sportsmanship

Progression and Self-improvement

Tips for Your Own Parkour Training


Here are some ways to build your own parkour training grounds:

  • Start training in basic parkour spots like parks or gym.
  • Gauge your skill level before moving on to more challenging courses.
  • Plan a course and time it. Then try to beat your own time.
  • Always start small then level up when you have enough confidence.
  • Always do conditioning exercises.
  • Learn one move first and master it before moving to the next one.
  • Join parkour communities because training alone defeats the purpose of improvement.
  • Remember: training is the goal, winning is just a bonus.
  • Join jam sessions with other parkour groups to develop bonds and exchange training ideas.
  • Alway have fun!

10 Obstacle Course Ideas for Parkour Training


Here are then 10 obstacle course ideas that you can incorporate into your parkour routines. Just remember to have fun and be safe!

1. Zombie Run

Zombies as obstacle course ideas? Sign us up! In this event, everyone's favorite undead will serve as the obstacles. It means it will require participation from a lot of people (as "zombies"), but the more the merrier, right?


Like any obstacle course, the winning condition is to reach the finish line in the fastest time possible. The participants will wear a colored bandana. Along the course, they must avoid the roaming "zombies" and prevent them from snatching their bandana; otherwise they are tagged as "caught". You can set this event in a big space like a parking lot or a warehouse.

2. Zombie Tag

This is Zombie Run but simplified! This person can be played by 6 to 10 people anywhere, but we recommend a setting with a lot of obstacles like tables, cars, etc.


One person will start as the zombie (scream "Brainsss" for more drama). He will chase anyone and tag him. After getting tagged, that person will be "infected" and become part of the growing zombie horde. The tagging will continue up to the last "survivor". That survivor will then become the first zombie in the next round. One variation of this is "Aliens and Astronauts".

3. Lava Chase Tag

This is a classic chase-tag game and the perfect obstacle course ideas for parkour. It can be played in any playground, park, or any open spot.


Set up the course and decide which the "lava" areas are. One person will be the "it" who will chase and tag anyone. No one except the "it" can step on the lava or else they become the new "it". Another variation of this is called "Crocodile Swamp".

4. Monkey Tree Tag

This is the classic chase-tag with a few twists.


One, a person will be the "monkey" or "it" who will tag the other players. Two, the players cannot stay on the ground for over 3 seconds; otherwise they will become the new monkey. Three, the monkey CANNOT tag anyone up on a "tree" or any object above the ground.


Four, the players cannot stay on a tree for more than 10 seconds and must transfer to another tree. To prevent the monkey from "camping", he must not wait near a tree for over 3 seconds. In other words, this event is a non-stop chase-and-tag game that will test everyone's running, climbing and parkour skills.

5. Ultimate Chase Tag Course

If you want the ultimate test of your parkour skills, then we suggest this event.


This is basically a chase-tag game set up in a enclosed space full of bars, planks, and other obstacles. Two players - one is the "it" - will chase each other across and around this giant obstacle course. The tagged player will be the new "it".


For winning conditions, the person who stays as "it" for more than a minute loses. Or the player with the least number of it turns wins.

6. Alice and Rabbit Chase

Obstacle Course

Image Via Unsplash

There are many obstacle course ideas, but this one takes the beloved "Alice in Wonderland" story and turns it into an obstacle course game.


One person will serve as the "rabbit" whose goal is to reach the "rabbit hole" at the end of the course. He will be given a 5-second head-start to traverse the obstacles.


Another player, Alice, will chase the rabbit by following him through the same obstacle course. The player who can catch the rabbit, or reach the rabbit hole in the shortest time possible wins the event. One variation of this is called "Roadrunner and Coyote".

7. Parkour Drone Hunt

Of all obstacle course ideas on this list, this is the most competitive one. You need to set up a big obstacle course room with "player stations". We recommend 4 to 8 stations (4 corners + 4 sides of the room). Each station will have unique design of obstacles for the players to traverse.


The goal is for the players to catch a flying drone, which will pop out randomly in the middle area. After the drone has been caught, the players will switch stations so they will traverse a different course, which will add to the challenge.

8. Parkour Musical Chairs

Parkour

Image Via Pexels

This is the classic musical chairs with a parkour twist.


Set up a circular set of obstacles. Put precision landings in the middle. Play a music (ask them to dance to it for more fun) and when you press pause, the players must rush to the middle and do precise landings towards it. Like the musical chair, the last person will be "out".

9. Progression Obstacle Course

These obstacle course ideas stay true to the progression and self-improvement principles of parkour.


All you need is an obstacle course setup (in a gym or warehouse).I f you don't have any, use the usual parkour "spots" like parks, streets, or any public space with lots of obstacles. The goal is for the trainee to follow a certain route and finish it. This first lap will be timed and the goal of the next lap is to beat his own time. Let him do this for 4 to 5 laps.


One variation is to set up "X" marks in specific spots along the course and time how long it takes for the trainee to reach each spot.

10. Classic Obstacle Course

Of course, nothing beats the time-tested classic. Just set up a challenging obstacle course (American Ninja-style) full of rope ladders, ramps, etc. and the players with the shortest finish time wins!

Conclusion


There you have it, 10 creative obstacle course ideas for using and training your parkour moves. These are just key ideas and you might develop a variation on your own as you play in each one.

Remember, the main goal of training is to improve, not to win. Some competitiveness is always welcome, but keep it fair and respectful.

And don't forget: be safe and always have fun!

Osprey Daylight Backpack Review

The Osprey Daylight Backpack is in a class of backpacks hikers refer to as "day packs" for using on short trips. Some of these backpacks include hydration (an interior bladder) while others focus on roominess or organization. The best day packs are durable, provide several pockets, are lightweight, and have adjustable features for comfort. The term backpack originally evolved from huge, external frame packs used for overnight trips, able to stuff in every conceivable gadget. But the rise of superstore outlets like REI has changed the outdoor gear market, so "backpack" covers an incredible array of options.

What is the Osprey Daylight Backpack

Image Source: Pexels

The Osprey Daylight Backpack is a lightweight pack large enough for most moderate day trips, but not recommended for overnights unless you are an experienced ultralight backpacker. It is a daypack that meets the needs of most hikers, but is especially suitable for those who want to grab and go, and who do hikes ranging from one to five hours. It comes in a class of day packs that are designed to be used only on day hikes, but compared to its competition is smaller with less capacity. It has a sleek design and if you are a seasoned traveler and pack well, is versatile enough for most single day outings.

Product Specs

Image Source: Pexels

The Osprey Daylight Backpack implies it's meant for daytime, but sunrise to sunset may be too many hours on the trail. This compact unit has a 13 liter capacity, but only weighs one pound! The pack comes with a bladder, standard in these types of day packs, so carrying a water bottle is unnecessary. It has two pockets and an easily removable hip belt. The Osprey Daylight Backpack has an internal frame that fits torso sizes 15 to 22 inches. The nylon Double Diamond Ripstop fabric is durable, and there are two main compartments for easy access.

Pricing

The Osprey Daylight Backpack can be purchased at Amazon or most outdoor gear shops for a very affordable price.

How It Compares

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If you are searching for a  similar Osprey product, there is an Osprey Daylight Plus Backpack. The manufacturer recommends that you try these packs out and compare fit.

We will review the Osprey Daylight Backpack to three close competitors:

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Carrying Capacity

Carries plenty, depending on needs for day hikes. Somewhat larger day packs will provide more space, but 13L or 793 cubic inches is sufficient for most hikers in most conditions. We retain one star because some individuals, particularly larger hikers, might prefer more space for a light jacket or extra base layer.

Special Features

The features on the Osprey Daylight Backpack include padded straps, removable belt, bladder capacity (optional), two large main compartments, excellent trouble-free zipper style, side mesh pockets, and slotted foam to improve cooling on the hiker's back.

Design Quality

Highly rated in design, as are nearly all Osprey products, this back includes maximum space for minimum weight. The design does not involve extraneous pockets that never get used or mesh that gets in the way of stashing and removing gear. The hydration reservoir can be used to stash a tablet if the hiker is taking along tech gear, and attaches to Osprey Add On-series packs if a roomier system is desired.

Warranty

Osprey stands behind its products fully. If purchased at REI through membership, the Osprey Daylight Backpack can be returned for any reason for a full refund. If purchased at other retailers (including Amazon), the warranty covers tears, defects or other problems.

Pros

  • Perfect storage to weight ratio
  • Plenty of pack for most needs
  • Sleek and evolved design system
  • Affordable
  • Durable materials used
  • Easy access to storage

Cons

  • May not be big enough for long day hikes
  • Not recommended for overnight

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The Gonex is an honest product that pretty much says it all in its name. The Gonex is lightweight, easy to grab and go, made for a variety of travel situations, and is technically a backpack. The Gonex ultralight includes 20L of space and three zip up compartments. It comes in eight colors, is foldable, and comes with large mesh pockets for extras. This pack has the handy feature of folding itself inside out into a much smaller case for tossing into luggage while traveling. This pack weighs 185 grams, or 7.2 ounces, so is lightweight.

Carrying Capacity

The Gonex will carry a lot of items and is about the size of a standard backpack used for school books. It can handle larger objects, but does not have an option for a bladder, so water bottles will need to be stored in its side mesh pockets.

Special Features

The best feature of the Gonex is its ability to curl up into a little version and be contained in a much smaller pack for storage. This feature makes the Gonex an excellent sidekick for traveling. The Gonex is waterproof, which puts it above some competition that is only water resistant.

Design Quality

The design is uncomplicated; the pack looks more like standard backpack used by high school and elementary school students. It comes in a variety of colors which is a plus, but lacks the ability to carry a hydration bladder, which is a big minus. It is nice looking but seems somewhat dated in design. For travel, however, it is a solid design. It lacks the right design for day hiking, but can be used if a travel and hiking pack need to be combined in one pack. The pack lacks a chest or waist strap for hiking. The design is great for an all-purpose travel back, but not ideal as a day hiking pack.

Warranty

Gonex can be purchased on Amazon where the warranty covers tears or problems in the shipping process. Otherwise, returning the pack if it is not suitable is up for negotiation with Amazon.

Pros

  • Waterproof
  • Folds into small storage size
  • Under a pound
  • Comes in several colors
  • Great capacity for its weight

Cons

  • Old-fashioned design
  • Lacks chest or waist strap
  • Looks like a school backpack
  • Lacks a hydration bladder

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This handy backpack compares favorably with the Osprey Daylight Backpack at considerable cost savings. It also compares nicely with Gonex, because of the many extra features. What it lacks in sleekness is makes up for in the array of design features, including a waterproof shell, adjustable straps, breathable back, and padded arm straps. This Camel Crown pack has more features than the others on this list because it is a larger pack that can be used for overnight trips. Its key feature is versatility as day pack, travel pack or overnighter.

Carrying Capacity

Thirty liters of carrying capacity puts it above some other packs on this list, and it can be used for overnight for some hikers, if they pack parsimoniously and skimp on a few luxuries. This is an internal frame pack and smaller than most full backpacks, functioning more readily as a day or travel pack. While the pack has excellent carrying capacity, its storage to weight ratio doesn't lift it into five star territory.

Special Features

Camel Crown doesn't skimp on features. Along with standard exterior pockets (mesh), the pack has several interior pockets for specialized storage. Adjustable shoulder, chest and side straps make for a comfy fit. It is water resistant (not waterproof) and comes with an extra carrying case to compress the pack for storage.

Design Quality

Solid design with all the basic features plus a few nice extras (like the storage case). High quality, durable straps and buckles, two-way zippers and bar tacks all combine for excellent design of moving systems. The look isn't spectacular, so the Camel Crown loses one star in that area.

Warranty

The company stands behind a one-year warranty, whether purchased directly, via Amazon or at other outdoor supply retailers.

Pros

  • Large capacity
  • Nice array of useful features
  • Packs down into small case
  • Inexpensive

Cons

  • Water resistant, not waterproof
  • Bigger than necessary for day trips
  • Multiple straps and buckles can get in the way

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At only half a pound, the Outlander is half the weight of the Osprey Daylight Backpack. This is one of the lightest packs on our list, but compares nicely in terms of storage space and features. Like the Gonex and Camel Crown, this is a day pack and travel pack in one, and provides the feature of putting the whole pack into its own tiny bag for storage. The Outlander is water-resistant, made from durable nylon fabric, uses metal zippers, and includes durable dual-pocketed exterior mesh system. A single outer pocket is designed for smaller items stored in front, for easy access.

Carrying Capacity

Carries enough gear for day trips and long travel days or sight seeing outings. At 33 liters of space it is one of the largest day packs we review, and it makes an excellent option as a carry-on when traveling. The space is well used, with a large interior pocket than can handle a laptop, jacket, or bulky sweater. The internal, zippered pocket is made for securing valuables, and the side mesh pockets are large enough to handle big water bottles, an umbrella, or a stuffed extra layer of clothing.

Special Features

This pack has no stand out features, but comes with what is necessary and expected in small packs. The mesh pockets on the side, water resistance, its own pack for storage. The pack is built to be abrasion resistant, and can be tossed about without losing its color or look. its multiple pockets are a strong feature if you like several interior pockets rather than just two compartments. For hiking, too many pockets can be a downside. Overall, this handy little pack has all the features you will need in a day or travel pack.

Design Quality

The Outlander is well designed, and the manufacturer considered where to put extra pockets (like a secure interior one). There is more than enough space in the mesh side pockets. The design quality almost rates five stars, but this pack isn't as nice looking as the Osprey Daylight Backpack or the Gonex. It comes in 13 color options, which is a plus if buying as a gift or accessorizing with luggage. The ability to store this pack is an extra benefit, and it folds easily inside its smaller storage bag. The company boasts it can store 26 backpacks in just one small travel bag.

Warranty

The Outlander Ultra Lightweight comes with a lifetime warranty.

Pros

  • Lightweight
  • Durable, quality components
  • Roomy main compartment
  • Excellent for storing in a smaller bag

Cons

  • Multi-use rather than just a hiking pack
  • Outer zipper can be hard to access if pack is full
  • Side pockets are large and can get caught

Conclusion

Today's day packs have amazing features. Almost all high quality packs come standard with extra storage pockets, are lightweight, and many are easily folded into their own bag for space saving. Among the four we've reviewed, all come with superior value, but we like the Osprey Daylight Backpack best for hiking. It has a simple, sleek design that is light enough and roomy enough for most trips. The other three packs are great for an all-around travel pack, and the Gonex would even make an upscale school backpack, but the Osprey Daylight Backpack outshines them all with its nearly perfect design, hydration option and great look.

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