Luke Albretch Interview

We had a chance to sit down and talk to APK Sponsored Athlete Luke Albrecht, the most lovable guy in parkour with a flair for fluidity. He lives out in Colorado, where he spends his time playing and perfecting his moves, coaching at Path Movement, or working at his local farmers market.

How long have you been training? What would be your advice to anyone starting out?

I started training in 2005, so it’s been over thirteen years. Natural progressions are the key to undertaking the parkour journey: start slow and easy, you will get better as you continue to move. Watch videos and train with friends to get inspired, but don’t be in a hurry to learn flips: remember to build a strong foundation that can support a castle.

What’s your favorite type of movement?

I like to joke and say it’s a safety landing: it just feels so good to drop down into a safety landing and experience zero impact, I love that feeling of compression and rebound. In all honesty, though, I don’t really have a favorite move: I love anything that flows really well, that is challenging and takes some problem-solving. I love taking seemingly easy movements and applying them to certain situations and making them very challenging.

What’s something you like about APK?

I love how holistic APK’s views and goals are. APK wants people to become better humans, to improve themselves and their lives. Parkour is one way of doing that, and it’s fun and beneficial in so many ways. While some view parkour as a lifestyle, it is also a platform and stepping stone on which people can improve everything about themselves. The rest of their lives matter, their other hobbies matter, their other goals matter. Parkour isn’t the end-all-be-all, but it definitely has the potential to help you and improve your life. It can fit in well with everything else you’re doing.

What’s your favorite aspect of the parkour community?

The integrity and authenticity of the people in the community. In parkour, you are either capable of doing something or you aren’t, but you can’t fake it or be someone you’re not. That integrity and authenticity are a crucial component of a lot of people’s character. I really appreciate spending time with good people like that. And it’s always fun to go out and eat good food and drink a good beer with your friends after a good training session.

What’s something the community needs to improve?

I think there’s way too much emphasis on “style“: everyone is getting their style labeled and now there are categories of style. Movement is movement: you do what you do and you move how you move. Looking up to someone and aspiring towards a “style” is fine, but I’ve seen and raised a lot of traceurs who get down on themselves and don’t value their movement because “it’s not good enough.” Or they push for the hard stuff to try and be relevant while neglecting to build a strong foundation. Styles create filters to observe people’s movement, and filters create judgement and/or ignorance. I want everyone to have the freedom and enjoyment of just moving as they please and not being categorized. And hey, maybe it was inevitable. Who knows.

Who inspires you?

I love the Witchell Brothers and they’re WitchellTraining channel on YouTube. They were a massive inspiration for how I developed my movement and style. Back in the day it was 3Run, Daniel Ilabaca, Ryan Doyle, and Oleg Vorslav. Nowadays it’s David Nelmes, Ben Reddington, Marc Busch, Endijs Miscenko (basically everyone in Ashigaru), Philipp Holzmüller, Joe Scandrett is just insane. Honestly there’s a lot of names I could give you…

If you could train anywhere in the world, unrestricted, where would that be?

I’ve seen so little of the world so it would be impossible for me to say a specific place. I think the determining factor to make anywhere enjoyable and equally satisfying would be the ability to just train unrestricted. There are places five minutes away from my house that would be incredible if I could train there unrestricted, but I’m sure the same can be said for a random place in Colombia, Bulgaria, or Indonesia. Every little spot has massive potential. And a series of curbs can be as equally satisfying for me as say, Freeway Park in Seattle. It’s how you use your spaces that makes them worthwhile or not. And if you had the freedom to train unrestricted anywhere you wanted, the potential would be even more infinite than it already is.

How do you spend your time?

My lifestyle mostly consists of parkour: watching videos in the morning, training pretty regularly during the day, and coaching almost every evening. I also help the family business by selling cheese curds at the local farmer’s market. Beyond that, I rockclimb, I play guitar and compose music (songs and entire scores), I make paper snowflakes that take around two hours to finish, and I love cooking and baking, and I take a lot of luxury baths. When I got a compound fracture in my ankle and couldn’t move as much as I wanted to, I started playing video games (Skyrim and the like) and watching a lot of anime.

What is your dream job?

Honestly, my dream job would be to be able to travel the world riding roller coasters and writing reviews as a roller coaster critic. If I could get paid to do that, that would definitely be a dream come true.

Tell us something about you that most people wouldn’t know.

I loooove vacuuming. I am super systematic with it and proud of how perfect at vacuuming I am.

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Written by

Mark Toorock

Child at heart. Founder of American Parkour. Champion of play. Runs the APK Academy and Primal Fitness in Washington, DC.