Author Topic: Non-Philosopher  (Read 33288 times)

Offline Dan Elric

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Re: Non-Philosopher
« Reply #200 on: December 17, 2010, 10:05:53 AM »
Thank you Andy =D

The result of what he said is fairly profound.  IF parkour is a mindset that mindset is going to be different for everyone.  Hell David Belle doesn't think you're doing parkour unless it is useful, and Seb referred to parkour as a freedom of movement.  And then parkour gets translated into free running into that interview and we separate parkour and free running why?  Because we think there needs to be a distinction between what Seb does and what David does.

What, we don't all follow their mindsets exactly.  I've heard people tout, "follow your own path."  And ask questions like, "What does parkour mean to you?"

Because of this discontinuity a definition of parkour can never be reached because it depends on how you think about parkour, rather than what it is.  Look at the etymology of parkour.  L'art du dèplacement means the art of movement.  This is what parkour was originally intended to mean, so should we let it evolve or let traceurs throw their two cents in about what they think it means?

I believe APK's definition accomplishes an explanation of what l'art du dèplacement means the best.  And if you disagree well...  Sorry, but this isn't about opinion, it is about an objective definition. 

Offline klaymen

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Re: Non-Philosopher
« Reply #201 on: December 17, 2010, 10:12:58 AM »
I don't agree with this idea that it has to do with your own mindset. Parkour and Free Running have very different ideals. The thing they have in common is that they are both movement arts. Kung Fu and Krav Maga are both martial arts, but that doesn't mean they should be interchangeable. I really don't understand why people wouldn't want them to have separate definitions. It solves so many disputes about flips and whatnot.

Offline Adam McC

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Re: Non-Philosopher
« Reply #202 on: December 17, 2010, 10:23:22 AM »
I don't agree with this idea that it has to do with your own mindset. Parkour and Free Running have very different ideals. The thing they have in common is that they are both movement arts. Kung Fu and Krav Maga are both martial arts, but that doesn't mean they should be interchangeable. I really don't understand why people wouldn't want them to have separate definitions. It solves so many disputes about flips and whatnot.

Why shouldn't Kung Fu and Krav Maga be interchangeable? ;) I've been doing Japanese Karate for a while, and Chinese Kung Fu for a while, and they are completely interchangeable. Because they all came from the same place, if you study your history. Same with Parkour.

As for solving disputes about flips, in my experience it only creates more arguments. Calling it all the same, Parkour is Freerunning, Freerunning is Parkour, all the movements belong in them, that's when you're no longer disputing what sideflips are doing. It's all part of the method of training that -you- select.

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Offline Andy Keller

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Re: Non-Philosopher
« Reply #203 on: December 17, 2010, 10:24:59 AM »
I don't agree with this idea that it has to do with your own mindset. Parkour and Free Running have very different ideals. The thing they have in common is that they are both movement arts. Kung Fu and Krav Maga are both martial arts, but that doesn't mean they should be interchangeable. I really don't understand why people wouldn't want them to have separate definitions. It solves so many disputes about flips and whatnot.

It answers the flip question, for the most part, yes, but a separation brings about so many more questions. To be doing "parkour," must you be traveling efficiently at all times? As fast as possible? As safe? The same can be said for "freerunning" if it becomes totally separate - must it be fun? Or aesthetic? Or playful?

Why not have a broad concept for parkour rather than specific definitions that may or may not fit individual practitioners?
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Re: Non-Philosopher
« Reply #204 on: December 17, 2010, 10:25:42 AM »
Perhaps I should rephrase that question.

If Parkour is the discipline, is Freerunning another way for that discipline to manifest itself in a practitioner, or something different?

I figure Seb was following David for some time, and he developed his own ideas of what parkour is or should be. Does he want it to be "under" Parkour, like a throw style in Judo, or separate, like Martial Arts vs Movement Arts?

Because of this discontinuity a definition of parkour can never be reached because it depends on how you think about parkour, rather than what it is.  Look at the etymology of parkour.  L'art du dèplacement means the art of movement.  This is what parkour was originally intended to mean, so should we let it evolve or let traceurs throw their two cents in about what they think it means?

I believe APK's definition accomplishes an explanation of what l'art du dèplacement means the best.  And if you disagree well...  Sorry, but this isn't about opinion, it is about an objective definition. 

Surely parkour has to be something definite?

Offline Andy Keller

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Re: Non-Philosopher
« Reply #205 on: December 17, 2010, 10:29:13 AM »
Surely parkour has to be something definite?

It can be, but only something broad and seemingly vague. There is definite purpose to parkour, but defining that purpose in a way that fits practitioners universally is difficult.
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Re: Non-Philosopher
« Reply #206 on: December 17, 2010, 10:36:06 AM »
It can be, but only something broad and seemingly vague. There is definite purpose to parkour, but defining that purpose in a way that fits practitioners universally is difficult.

If parkour has a concrete definition that doesn't fit some of the many that claim to practice it, wouldn't that make threads like these non-practitioners trying to fit the label to themselves?

Which would be weird, because then you'd have a bunch of crazy people jumping over stuff.

That's equally as probable as parkour having a definition we haven't found yet... Right?
« Last Edit: December 17, 2010, 10:37:49 AM by Evan Blanc S »

Offline Adam McC

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Re: Non-Philosopher
« Reply #207 on: December 17, 2010, 12:10:34 PM »
I think, Evan, you're specifying it to an unrealistic level. It's not about a specific definition. Language will always be ambiguous. Take baseball as an example. The only thing we have about baseball is an idea. It's a concept. If you're playing catch with a friend, that's playing some baseball. If you're in the MLB with a team, that's baseball. If you're at a batting cage swinging a bat, that's baseball. There's no definition, because there doesn't need to be one. The more you break it apart, the less sure it becomes. Like baseball, Parkour is an idea, a concept, something we are all in our heads familiar with. Words like 'learning to overcome obstacles' and 'moving efficiently' and 'training to be strong, to be useful' can describe Parkour, but they cannot encompass it. Such is the way of language. We could go through this process with every word in the English language. What is a tree, really? What is an animal? What are humans? We've never truly been able to absolutely define anything. We just operate off the concepts and ideas these words give us.

Thus, we all have a sort of inherent idea of what Parkour is, and what Freerunning is. That's our definition. and I think APK has done a very good job of describing that idea, with their definition. It's not about fitting or not fitting into the hard-marked definition of Parkour/FR. I don't think many people would argue that the original author of this topic isn't doing Parkour because he doesn't agree with the philosophical aspect.

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Offline klaymen

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Re: Non-Philosopher
« Reply #208 on: December 17, 2010, 07:11:01 PM »
It answers the flip question, for the most part, yes, but a separation brings about so many more questions. To be doing "parkour," must you be traveling efficiently at all times?

...you don't have to be doing parkour at all times...

Offline klaymen

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Re: Non-Philosopher
« Reply #209 on: December 17, 2010, 07:14:38 PM »
Take baseball as an example. The only thing we have about baseball is an idea. It's a concept. If you're playing catch with a friend, that's playing some baseball. If you're in the MLB with a team, that's baseball. If you're at a batting cage swinging a bat, that's baseball.

I disagree with this. Just because you are playing catch with a baseball does not mean that you are "playing Baseball". I don't understand why people feel that anytime they are out training they must call it Parkour.

Offline Leland

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Re: Non-Philosopher
« Reply #210 on: December 17, 2010, 08:52:27 PM »
We call it Parkour because that's the reason we're training. Seriously, without exposure to Parkour, would you be climbing walls and vaulting rails? Even if you're conditioning outdoors, who else conditions like a traceur? Most other people who care about fitness in one way or another wouldn't even consider doing QM or shimmying, but we know how incredible various forms of these exercises can be for physical gains.

Offline Adam McC

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Re: Non-Philosopher
« Reply #211 on: December 17, 2010, 10:04:44 PM »
I disagree with this. Just because you are playing catch with a baseball does not mean that you are "playing Baseball". I don't understand why people feel that anytime they are out training they must call it Parkour.

Are you honestly telling me that you think that say, you ask a 12 year old practicing pitching with his 13 year old friend at the local park what he's doing, he replies, "playin some baseball", that you'd consider him to be defining his activity wrong? I think that goes against every ounce of common sense that led us to the point of our lives that we're currently at. I clearly remember telling my parents that I'm gonna go play some baseball with my friends, and we'd just throw the ball and bat the ball and have fun. That was a very clear line of communication there.

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Offline klaymen

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Re: Non-Philosopher
« Reply #212 on: December 18, 2010, 01:35:34 AM »
We call it Parkour because that's the reason we're training. Seriously, without exposure to Parkour, would you be climbing walls and vaulting rails? Even if you're conditioning outdoors, who else conditions like a traceur? Most other people who care about fitness in one way or another wouldn't even consider doing QM or shimmying, but we know how incredible various forms of these exercises can be for physical gains.

You can be training for Parkour without doing Parkour. I really wish the old Parkour.net forums had not been purged. Other people have been through all of these discussions and it was explained so much better than I am probably doing right now.

Are you honestly telling me that you think that say, you ask a 12 year old practicing pitching with his 13 year old friend at the local park what he's doing, he replies, "playin some baseball", that you'd consider him to be defining his activity wrong?

If someone says they are going to play baseball, that means playing a game of baseball. Yea, the line can get fuzzy if you are pitching and batting, or having baseball practice, but I feel like this is straying too far into the baseball analogy. What we are really discussing is the definition of Parkour, which has been clearly defined numerous times. It really saddens me that people are still clinging to this idea of Parkour being whatever you want it to be or some form of self expression or some other nonsense. Parkour is about quick and efficient movement in order to be useful. Free Running has been established years ago as the artistic/aesthetic offshoot of Parkour. I understand that they both kind of started as the same thing as far as the beginnings of the Yamakasi goes, but I'm pretty sure David Belle had an idea of what Parkour should be from the beginning. It was based on his father's method of escape in Viet Nam and Georges Hebert's "Methode Naturelle", both of which were based on being useful. Even the name "Parkour" comes from "parcours du combattant" (obstacle course). Since when has an obstacle course been about anything other than quickly and efficiently overcoming obstacles?

If it's really not a big deal for people to stray from the idea of usefulness, then why is it such a big deal to call it Free Running instead of Parkour?


Offline Adam McC

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Re: Non-Philosopher
« Reply #213 on: December 18, 2010, 04:48:05 AM »
If it's really not a big deal for people to stray from the idea of usefulness, then why is it such a big deal to call it Free Running instead of Parkour?

It's not! I'm all for it being the same.

Yes, Klay. I'm quite aware of the generic narrative of how Parkour came about, thank you. Why do you think APK took the time to create the new, updated definition of Parkour? Because "the most quick and efficient movement" doesn't really make any sense anymore, it's outdated. Your wiki-history of Parkour is not quite accurate, I'm afraid. Freerunning was never an offshoot with a different purpose, it was a renaming for British television. Look, if "as efficiently as possible" is the true definition, it's impossible to even do Parkour. Ever. Because there's always something more efficient you can do, because we always have the capacity to better ourselves in some little way. That, and efficiency has a million facets. All we do is train. I won't get into this entire argument because its been done a thousand times already on this board, and the fact that APK took the time to adjust the definition lies as proof of that.

If you want to go back to the "roots", rather than being -pretty sure- what David had an idea of, why don't you watch some interviews of David Belle, particularly the new one, or talk to some of the Yamakasi personally as I have, and then I truly think you'll find that every single one of them want Parkour to be an individual path for people to take.

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Offline klaymen

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Re: Non-Philosopher
« Reply #214 on: December 18, 2010, 09:05:57 AM »
Freerunning was never an offshoot with a different purpose, it was a renaming for British television. Look, if "as efficiently as possible" is the true definition, it's impossible to even do Parkour. Ever. Because there's always something more efficient you can do, because we always have the capacity to better ourselves in some little way. That, and efficiency has a million facets. All we do is train. I won't get into this entire argument because its been done a thousand times already on this board, and the fact that APK took the time to adjust the definition lies as proof of that.

If you want to go back to the "roots", rather than being -pretty sure- what David had an idea of, why don't you watch some interviews of David Belle, particularly the new one, or talk to some of the Yamakasi personally as I have, and then I truly think you'll find that every single one of them want Parkour to be an individual path for people to take.

Yea, it was originally a way to try to explain what Sebastien was doing to the English crowd and he didn't mean for it to be any different. Since then the community decided to make the distinction to solve disputes about flips and other stuff. I guess things have changed since then, but there was a time when it what pretty much unanimously agreed upon that there is a clear distinction.

By your logic, speed runs of anything are not possible because you can always be faster. So you're saying you see no distinction in the mindset of practicing Parkour vs. Free Running? I just can't accept this. Parkour has the same sort of mentality as training a martial art, Free Running has the same mentality of skate boarding or gymnastics (no purpose other than improving and being able to do new "moves").

I have seen plenty of David Belle interviews, but I guess I could give the Yamakasi a call. What's their number again?

Offline Adam McC

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Re: Non-Philosopher
« Reply #215 on: December 18, 2010, 09:53:27 AM »
By your logic, speed runs of anything are not possible because you can always be faster. So you're saying you see no distinction in the mindset of practicing Parkour vs. Free Running? I just can't accept this. Parkour has the same sort of mentality as training a martial art, Free Running has the same mentality of skate boarding or gymnastics (no purpose other than improving and being able to do new "moves").

I have seen plenty of David Belle interviews, but I guess I could give the Yamakasi a call. What's their number again?

Yeah, there was a time like that, when it was agreed upon. And it was a while ago.

I see no distinction between the practice of Freerunning and Parkour. There's nothing in Parkour that's not Freerunning, and nothing in Freerunning that's not Parkour, because they are different words for the same discipline. A third party meaning was applied to Freerunning, and it was an incorrect meaning. Your concept of Freerunning, I'm sorry to say, is horrifically shallow. And I don't mean that in an offensive way towards you. I mean it in a blunt and straight forward way. You're saying that "Freerunners" train for no purpose other than to show off and improve new moves? I've met a great many people who claim the title "Freerunners" and many are very deep, and they have a lot of purpose, philosophy, and useful application to their movement. I'm one of them! I do flips right alongside kongs. You're telling me that all Freerunning is just showing off and doing "moves" for the sake of it. That's the most ignorant statement I've seen in a while. So Sebastian is someone who has no purpose to his movement except improving new moves? No philosophy at all.

Yes, your perception of my logic is correct. Perfectly efficient motion is a goal we work towards, not something we ever achieve. That process of working towards perfection is what makes us better. That process or path, I call Parkour. Or Freerunning. Because if all Parkour is, is moving perfectly efficiently, then it's never been practiced. All we can ever do is 'try', and that's called training. Hence, APK's definition. "Parkour is the physical discipline of training to overcome any obstacle within one's path by adapting one's movements to the environment." My opinion is that what you consider "freerunning" movements are a part of that training

As for the Yamakasi, hit em up on Facebook. I've got them added. They're quite willing to Facebook chat and send messages.

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Offline klaymen

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Re: Non-Philosopher
« Reply #216 on: December 18, 2010, 12:06:54 PM »
I've met a great many people who claim the title "Freerunners" and many are very deep, and they have a lot of purpose, philosophy, and useful application to their movement. I'm one of them! I do flips right alongside kongs. You're telling me that all Freerunning is just showing off and doing "moves" for the sake of it. That's the most ignorant statement I've seen in a while. So Sebastian is someone who has no purpose to his movement except improving new moves? No philosophy at all.

You're right, I apologize. I didn't really mean to say that there was no purpose or philosophy to free running I was just getting frustrated and trying to think of new ways to state the idea that I was trying to convey.

Really I am just frustrated by people flipping around and showing off for the camera then calling it Parkour. I really feel that Free Running should have a broader definition that includes flipping and palm spins and whatnots. I like the idea that Parkour is specifically designed for usefulness and hate when I mention Parkour and someone asks me about back flips and jumping off of roofs.

As for the Yamakasi, hit em up on Facebook. I've got them added. They're quite willing to Facebook chat and send messages.

Damn, times certainly have changed...

Offline Adam McC

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Re: Non-Philosopher
« Reply #217 on: December 18, 2010, 12:56:30 PM »
Really I am just frustrated by people flipping around and showing off for the camera then calling it Parkour. I really feel that Free Running should have a broader definition that includes flipping and palm spins and whatnots. I like the idea that Parkour is specifically designed for usefulness and hate when I mention Parkour and someone asks me about back flips and jumping off of roofs.


And I'm tired of people running around doing uncontrolled giant cat leaps and roof gaps and kongs that hurt their joints for a camera and a 'team video', and calling it Parkour. It's a mindset that's the problem, not 'Freerunning' or any other problem with definitions. If its flips and palm spins and flowly movements that don't necessarily transport you anywhere that are done well and controlled, I like to see it. The Yamakasi do it, David Belle does it, and it's movement with obstacles, so I call that Parkour. Flips are just as useful as double kongs and any other Parkour movement if you have a responsible mindset. So that's what we should be focusing on. Promoting responsibility and knowledge, rather than bickering over what -we- think Parkour should be. Let's focus on the foundations: motivation, purpose, responsibility, spirit. Then people can move however they see fit, with that proper foundation set. Yes?

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Offline max eisenberg

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Re: Non-Philosopher
« Reply #218 on: December 18, 2010, 01:36:56 PM »
all of it is parkour, free running and ldd...

not all of it is "the way".

go watch the iceland interview with kerbie and seb. theres one line that redefined my definitions that i thought were rock solid. to reiterate what has been said between the lines NUMEROUS times in this thread...

its not about what you call it, rather how you approach it and what mindset you have to it.


my mind is constantly moving, one day my body will be strong enough to keep up.

Offline Dan Elric

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Re: Non-Philosopher
« Reply #219 on: December 18, 2010, 03:15:53 PM »
all of it is parkour, free running and ldd...

not all of it is "the way".

go watch the iceland interview with kerbie and seb. theres one line that redefined my definitions that i thought were rock solid. to reiterate what has been said between the lines NUMEROUS times in this thread...

its not about what you call it, rather how you approach it and what mindset you have to it.

Nah, that's silly.  What a dancer isn't a dancer if they don't approach what they do with the right mindest?  Do I have to have some special intangible quality to be a musician when I play music?