Author Topic: Finding the Creativity Within/ Finding Your Own Way  (Read 1139 times)

Offline 'Knox'

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Finding the Creativity Within/ Finding Your Own Way
« on: December 19, 2008, 10:57:39 AM »
Mentally maybe but what more physical movements are there that differentieate from parkour?

Well since parkour is efficiency..... first off I have to agree with everyone on this, if people want info then give them what they want, if it has to do with free running then this is the place for it. Ok, continuing on....efficiency and free running is more of just being creative with your environment, I think that there are plenty are physical movements that maybe don't differentiate from parkour but the combination of movements together can be very inefficient but also very creative which is a free runners goal. Ok, so you say good point (or maybe you don’t, too wordy, I get it  ;) ), lets talk about that, well it is very hard to because everyone trains and moves in different environments so unless pictures are taken and videos of the area are made then we cant really help each other out. Also, if people did give others ideas on how to move through an environment then you wouldn't be using your creativity because it was somebody else's idea in the first place. If we want to talk about creativity and linking movements together that would be great. I don’t see my self as someone who only does pk because I flip but also I don’t feel I am only a freerunner because I do a lot of pk only stuff. This is my most recent sampler and I feel that I used the environment very nicely in a few spots. If you check out 1:19-1:36 and 2:13-2:32 you can see some flow and how it was inefficient but creative:

From 2:01-2:08 is one segment in my 3 month video that I liked with some creativity:

Actually I am going to make a new thread on this topic called 'Finding the Creativity from Within". Talking about becoming and being creative in your environment.

Honestly I have no idea where this thread will go but it doesn't seem to be brought up often or at all for that matter and I feel that it is very important.  I know that at first, 'seeing things' is harder than it is when you have more experience.  Creativity doesn't just go 'poof' in your head when you first start.  It’s not because you are not a creative person, it’s just that you don't have enough experience with moving.  I'm not talking about moving physically because we all walk, run, and you may not believe it, but some of us do pk/fr :).  Even practitioners that have been training for a while may have this problem...MOVING WITH YOUR MIND.

When I first started parkour and free running, I was like "Oooo I can do this, and this, OOOOOOOOOOOOO and what about this one," but the funny thing about that was, is that all of those things "I could do" (or maybe even things I couldn't do at the time but I knew were possible), were things I had seen other traceurs do in videos; they weren't my own ideas.  I thought they were for a while until my boy, Leon of the Tribe, told me something that made me look at things differently forever.  I was talking to him about how it seems like all of the best parkour spots are in the UK, London, France, etc. (pretty much everywhere not in our country), and he said to me that it wasn’t true at all.  He said that some of the best spots in the world are in the U.S.  At that point I was like "Really..., because all of these guys in other countries are so good and it seems that they have the best spots to train at."  He said to me, "We all watch their videos and try to do the same things they do.  The reason it seems to be that they have great areas and we don't, is that they have used their areas very well.  When we try to adapt their movements to our environment, we can’t, simply because we have a different environment to move in.  That is why we need to learn to move through our own environments without trying to copy others; we need to find our own way.”  The word ‘copy’ isn’t meant completely literal, it’s more like, looking at obstacles the same way they do.  He was saying that we use a vision but it is not our own vision, it is not free.  We cannot be blamed for this because pk/fr is a discipline that has gained its reputation and recognition mainly from the internet and YouTube videos.  The most popular videos and the ones people usually come across first are ones from other countries. Since pk/fr is relatively new to America, you see the most insane moves in those videos from other countries.  Being so inexperienced, when you start out, your first idea is, “I want to do that,” ‘that’ being a specific movement you saw in a video, instead of looking at what you have to use around you.

I will not sit here and tell you that I am the creativity guru because I’m not.  I have only been training for 11 months or so but I do feel that as far as creativity goes, I have really learned to ‘open my eyes’.  I know that there are plenty of traceurs out there more creative than I am, but maybe I feel that way because I don’t have their spots to train at, so creativity can only go so far.  Some, or many, may disagree with that statement but think of this.  If you have a 4 foot wall that is 20 feet long, how many things can you do there?  Let’s see, maybe every vault possible, some wall tricks, some flips off the wall, and maybe a few vault combinations.  That may seem like a lot to some, but your creativity, maybe not completely limited, is certainly bounded.  So in a sense, I do feel that creativity only goes as far as the environment.  Turn that 20 foot long wall into to an ‘L’ shape; 10 feet straight, 90 degrees then 10 feet again.  New combinations will open up and some may go away, but my point is you adapt your creativity to your environment.  Here, I’m not talking about someone who can jump 20 feet.  If that is the case, then possibilities open up even more and are less bounded but still limited none the less.

Moving with your mind is very difficult for some to do.  It’s not just looking at a spot and being like, “I could do that, that and that,” it’s more of forgetting about the things you can do and learning to see the endless possibilities that an area has to offer.  It relates to things like ‘mushin no shin’ which translates from Japanese martial arts as ‘mind of no mind’.  When you have completely freed your mind from everything and are in the present without any thoughts except for one thought that you are focusing on you will achieve ‘mushin no shin’.  Trust me; it is a state of mind that many people can’t easily get to.  Many use hours of meditation and thought control to achieve this.  Relating this idea to parkour and free running is the way you become creative.  One of the very many goals of parkour and free running is to be able to move with no restraints.  We train very hard so that we can overcome any obstacle physically.  I will not tell you that you shouldn’t have that as your goal, but I feel that there is something much more important than that.  I think that having no restraints mentally will lead us to move endlessly.  ‘Mentally’ is not to only be taken as “I have a mental block of fear holding me back from this obstacle.”  I want ‘mentally’ to be understood as no restraints on your mind and to be open to every way.

I have found one little drill that has been very helpful to me in becoming free and it takes no more than your mind just maybe a little bit of time.  When you are traveling somewhere in a car, all you do is look at your environment.  Let me clarify, you must be a passenger unless you want to pwn your life.  This will be more useful if no one is talking in the car, like if you are bored and have nothing to do, I wouldn’t shut people up for this, as they may think you are crazy... “I just want to imagine moving.” :).  As you are looking around, you need to imagine yourself running as fast as the car is moving and being able to do any possible thing.  In this case, possible things would be movements that only someone who could jump 100 feet could do, so a lot of these movements may very well be impossible for us to do in reality.  For example, picture your self running and jumping from one sign and doing a cat grab onto the next, then jumping from there and lache the street lights to a back flip dismount precision onto a stop sign and so on.  When I do this, many of the things seem so natural.  I find myself linking movements together that I would have never thought about even if I sat there and stared at it for an hour.  Once you have opened your mind, movements should be spontaneous.  It is moving without thinking about it, coming to an obstacle reacting in your own way.  At first, you may find yourself just doing basic things in your head, but over time you will find that after some of the moves you will be like, “Wow, how did I ever think of that?”  Well, that is the thing; you weren’t thinking about that move, it just happened because it was natural to you.  This is what you want to happen when you are trying to be creative or just moving through an environment; reacting spontaneously with an open mind.  Once you have reacted spontaneously with an open mind, you are on the path of ‘mushin no shin’.  You were so much into that present moment that nothing held you back, you weren’t thinking about the possibilities of movements but merely just letting them happen.  You can’t look at a spot and think, “I can do vaults here, lets see what combos can I do… kong to precision…,” if you think like that you are limiting yourself.  Imagine that you have never seen a kong to precision or even just a kong, how would you have ever thought to do that before?  You would have had to think about something that seemed impossible at the time.  Well now that you have seen specific vaults because of videos, you have a foundation of the basic movements.  We have a step up from the founders because they had to figure out the basic vaults for themselves, which then turned into the common combinations we know today.  Although we have a foot forward, we need to look at it the same way they did.  If you search for the impossible, you will find the possible.

Go out and be free.

Offline Shae Perkins

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Re: Finding the Creativity Within/ Finding Your Own Way
« Reply #1 on: December 19, 2008, 05:57:49 PM »
Creativity is very important. If you let yourself fall into a rut where you do the same things everyday, your training will become stale, and you'll one of those pesky "plateaus". I'm not saying I'm a creativity guru either, I just know from experience that challenging yourself with new obstacles everyday is the way to progression.
This post was based off of my personal gatherings. Enjoy:)