parkour practitioner jumping high near office building

Gain a New Superpower in Real Life – Learn How to Wall Run

Has one of your friends ever asked you what superpower you’d like to have? If your answer is running up walls, then this article is for you. Learning how to wall run is actually a skill, not really a superpower. Nonetheless, it’s still very impressive and can come in handy if you’re being chased or need to grab something off the ceiling.

Learning how to wall run can also help you be able to switch directions abruptly and stride over tall obstacles in your path.

Tere’s actually a fancy name for wall running. It’s called Parkour or freerunning.

man in jump pants with long hair wall running

History of Parkour

Parkour was first created in France by Raymond Belle. It was his son, David, who made this hobby popular during the late 1980s and 1990s. Though it’s really considered a type of gymnastics, it has been seen in many martial arts movies. It is often used in military training.

Parkour involves making a series of highly disciplined moves, including running, climbing, swinging, vaulting, jumping, and rolling. Taken together, they enable the practitioner to climb walls.

Parkour is both an individual and a team sport; it’s usually done in open urban areas. The best practitioners, such as David Belle, Sebastien Foucan, Romain Moutault, and Stephane Vigroux, say that one must get into a different mindset and see their environment in a different way, and then navigate accordingly.

4 Steps to Understand How to Wall Run

man in running suit looking at a wall preparing to wall run

To learn how to wall run involves a number of moves which need to be repeatedly practiced. Like skateboarding or really any sport, having no fear of falling and having the persistence to try again and again and perfect one’s style are the most important aspects of learning how to wall run. Here are the main steps in the process:

1. Accelerate your speed as you run parallel to the wall

It may seem counterproductive, but the first step in learning how to wall run is to gain enough speed by running alongside the wall. You will want to take a wide angle, bringing your body horizontal to the wall. You want to enter the plane as optimally as possible so that you can grip the wall surface in the perfect manner. This way, you will be able to hang onto the wall as you make your next movement.

Practicing sprinting will help you as you learn how to wall run. You have to rapidly gain enough speed so that you can keep your feet on the wall.

2. Make sure your first leg on the wall is behind the rest of your body

In order to maintain your forward momentum, place your foot in line with your body and keep your chest out. Many newbies make the mistake of placing their first leg on the wall in front of them. This will impede your progress. Much of learning to wall run is unlearning. You’ll need to break through any and all mental blocks that stand in your way, both literally and figuratively.

3. Keep your body as horizontal as possible

Envision the wall as the ground. See yourself walking sideways. Though unnatural at first, this posture will enable you to be in a position to push yourself off the wall and move into a vertical position before you land again. It’s important to stay on your toes and the balls of your feet rather than trying to use your whole foot to make this move.

4. Push off hard with your leg against the wall surface

When learning how to wall run, in order to transition back to the ground, you will need to push off hard against the wall. The trick is to use the power of the inside of your leg when you push. Envision pushing your body at a 45-degree angle, and then do so. You don’t want to push sideways,f or you will likely lose your balance.

There’s a move in Parkour called the tic-tac. Use it here to begin breaking from your jump. The tic tac involves pushing off of a wall but moving horizontally across the wall rather than up the wall.

This is where your hands and hips come into play. Use both of them to position yourself in the best angle in order to exit the wall. There’s no way around it. You’ll need to practice repeatedly to find your own style. This way you will discover the best location to place your foot based on your your height and your athletic ability.

This move must be perfect. If you end up too high on the wall, you won’t have enough lift to complete the move. But, if you come up too low on the wall, you won’t traverse far enough along the wall to get anywhere.

Additional Tips and Tricks

parkour practitioner jumping high near office building

Here are some additional pointers when first learning to wall run:

– In your initial attempts, start off with small steps. As you gain confidence, you can increase the distance between your steps on the wall. This, of course, will increase your speed.

– Balance is crucial to learning how to wall run. Many people make the mistake of assuming that the key to balance is in their legs. However, it’s really in their upper body and hips. You actually want to keep your body as static as possible.

– Beginning a strength training and conditioning program when you learn how to wall run is a smart move. The following exercises are especially beneficial in making your upper body and feet stronger: press-ups, clap press-ups, feet up press-ups, the V-Sit, standard sit-ups and leg lift sit-ups. You can also check out the best plyometric exercises out there for perfecting your technique.

The Parkour stretch (or Cobra) also strengthens your arms and back. In conditioning your body for Parkour, remember that you are aiming for excellence in form and stance over the number of repetitions you can muster.

Final Word

Just as with any sport, as they say: “if you’re not having fun, you’re not doing it right.” As you progress, be sure to share your moves with your family and friends. You’ll smile as you witness the amazement on their faces.

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