Fitness for Productivity

Getting in better shape is one of the most effective ways to improve your productivity, as it boosts your energy and focus. However, exercising can be very boring and tedious for many of us. I have recently started practicing Parkour, and it definitely fits my lifestyle better than other forms of exercise. Many of you probably haven’t heard of it either so I decided to write a beginner’s guide.

What is Parkour?

Parkour is becoming a very popular type of exercise among the general population. Many who have heard of it are curious as to what it is and will search for videos on what it looks like. But watching video’s isn’t enough to get the full meaning of what parkour is. To know what this exercise exactly is, you need to look into not only what it looks like, but also where it came from, how it is used, and how the average person can learn and train their bodies to a parkour style workout.

History

Throughout history, mankind has been looking for different ways to move faster, whether it is with their bodies or their minds. That is the thought behind parkour. Taken from the French word “parcours”, a word that means route or course, Parkour is an activity or sport in which an individual moves rapidly through an area. This area is typically an urban sprawl, and is navigated through a series of jumps while running or climbing.

Watching the videos, the exercise can remind one of old television shows depicting wild human/animal hybrids leaping from tree to tree, hanging by their finger-tips while watching the hero/heroine walk underneath them. These images are actually true in that those actors/stunt-people were performing parkour before it became popular.

Parkour’s main purpose is to train the individual’s body to propel itself through any obstacle, to get from point A to point B in the easiest way a person can, without the use of pulleys, rope, or any other outside aid. Momentum is the key to succeeding in overcoming what is preventing you from getting from one point to another. The design of the exercise is to not have it be a competitive sport, but instead a holistic exercise that allows the individual to rely on their own strength.

Some individuals state that the easiest way to do parkour is to imagine an invisible animal chasing behind you. While you run, you have to figure out ways around the buildings and other obstacles that you would normally go around, but now have to go over, through, or under in order to get away from this animal. How would you get away from this animal that will kill you and eat your body? By doing whatever you can to jump over, climb, or run in order to get as far away as possible. Performing flips is not what you want to do, you are not showing off for the animal. You are running for your life.

Want to start Parkour? Here are some great resources:

UltimateParkourGear.com
http://ultimateparkourgear.com/parkour-backpacks/
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Parkour

Be Careful

Of course, with any other type of exercise, you have to make sure you are healthy enough to participate with the type of exercise you are wanting to do, as well as understand the risks and benefits of participating in the type of exercise you are wanting to do. Parkour is a hardcore exercise that is guaranteed to get your heart pumping.