We teach Parkour classes almost every day. In addition to trying it, we have to tell you a short story for you to really understand what we mean when we say we teach Parkour.
Think about this like any other teacher/student lineage. Parkour and Freerunning come from somewhere. They have a source version that has since been replicated and marketed into the more popular versions you see today. Originating from France in the mid-80's, that source is called L'Art Du Deplacement. Collectively, they make up the fastest growing movement-lifestyle sub-culture on the planet. ADD was founded by the first generation practitioners known as the Yamakasi. The "Yamak" spirit is the true essence of what we do at Urban Movement.
Yamakasi: strong mind, strong spirit, strong person
The Yamakasi were a group of friends and family that mostly grew up together. They moved and practiced daily for years in the suburbs of Paris. One guy eventually left the group and started calling his style, Parkour. Another one split and started calling what he was doing, Freerunning. Four others stuck together to do everything in their power to keep the original purpose behind their training. They identify their personal movement practice as, L'Art Du Deplacement.
They usually look similar on the outside, and it's inevitable for some of the original philosophy and values of each style to crossover, but it's always what's inside that matters most.
Urban Movement is an official Ambassador for the ADD Academy in Paris, France. "ADD" stands for Art Du Deplacement. In English you would say, "Art of Displacement" or "Art of Movement". Our signature classes are heavily influenced by Art Du Deplacement, Parkour and Freerunning. The UMove team has a longstanding relationship with the Yamakasi - the founders of the discipline. Most of us have trained with them since the beginning of our practice, and they continue to inspire us today.
It's cool that someone can do a big jump, but we believe it's the personal intention and critical thinking process behind why and how we do the jump that's more important.
Browse through these videos to see more of what we're talking about: