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Topics - Mel Martinez

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Suggestions - What can we do better???!!! / Chat function?
« on: December 01, 2010, 07:31:10 AM »
So I searched up 3 different versions of this and couldn't find it anywhere.

Have we ever thought of adding a chat function? Just a place for us to log in and talk to other traceurs who are web surfing, maybe ask a question or talk about inconsequential stuff?

I just figured it might be interesting with this community, is all.

Parkour And Freerunning / Elbow Protection
« on: March 24, 2010, 08:35:03 PM »
Okay, so, to those of you who don't know, I was recently injured. :'( I fractured both elbows (the right more so than the left). It's been a little over a month since my injury. I am very well aware that I'm not ready to practice again. Today, I go to the doctor to get another Xray and MRI. Today he will tell me whether or not I can begin conditioning and practicing again using my arms.

So, my worries consist mainly of whether or not my elbows will be able to withstand the impact of a roll, or a kong vault. I plan on starting slow, strengthening my arms little by little. So, I plan to propose to my doctor as a compromise that I wear elbow protection for the next month or so. What is everyone's take on this?

Also if you agree with the elbow protection idea, what should I use? I don't want whatever I use to impede my mobility and speed. Any ideas on some lightweight, durable elbow protection that can allow me to move like normal?

Parkour And Freerunning / Tapping into the Flow
« on: March 08, 2010, 01:30:44 PM »

This is just something I thought I'd share with you guys. I had a strange dream the other night that provided me with some insight into our art.

To preface this, I am an active Lucid Dreamer, so I'm going to explain this the best way I can. Some of it will be difficult to understand if you've never experienced it.  :-\

So it's been a little over 2 weeks since I fractured my elbows. They're slowly healing up, and physical therapy is BRUTAL. I desperately need some sleep, so I lay down and began to rest, slipping into the warm embrace of sleep.

    I am in a strange place. Around me, I see a courtyard, I see people walking about, minding their own business. They are in black and white. There is no color anywhere. I walk to the center of the courtyard. A friend of mine (Who looks suspiciously like my brother) walks behind me. He taps me on the shoulder and asks me what's wrong. I look at him strangely; There's something odd about him. I tell him that I fractured my elbows and I can't run. I suddenly notice what is wrong with the guy. He has a blue shirt.  He looks at me and asks "Why not?", and I repeat myself. "I fractured my elbows, I can't do anything right now." He looks at me and smirks, then runs up a wall to the third floor. "Follow me!" He yells.I try to run up the wall and fall. I look at my arms and realize they are in casts. I scream in frustration and close my eyes.

    I Open My eyes again. I am at a lake. The blue shimmering water gives me a cool, calm feeling. It's so beautiful. Water! Instantly I know I am dreaming! I look at my hands and concentrate on every ridge and crevice in my hand, I flex and watch the light play off my skin. Everything is so clear now! I know I am dreaming! Instantly, I want to tear off my casts and go running. I have wanted to run for so long. But I can't. I rip and tear, I even grow a new arm and try to tear the casts off, they will not come off. Defeated, I sit myself down next to the lake and begin to scream! This is my dream! Why can't I run?!

   As I lay in my self pity, I feel a presence nearby. I look up, and there, by the shimmering, beautiful water, is a little girl. I have seen her in my dreams before, I know she is one of my persistent Dream Characters. I know she knows me more than I do. Her piercing eyes, every second a different color, rest on me. She walks over and kneels next to me, dripping water on my face from her hands. It is cool water, bringing relief, calming me. I look at the sky and watch the clouds race by. Fantastic birds with many colored feathers fly by, and a large, omnipresent moon completes the alien scene.  I have been here before.

   My little friend flicks her hands dry, giggling, and asks why I am unhappy. I tell her I can't run. She looks at me and asks why that matters? I may be injured out in the waking world, but this is my world. I can do anything I want here. I tell her that I can't take my casts off, and I really want to practice Parkour. She looks at me strangely and asks what Parkour is. I explain to her that it is the Art of Movement. Getting from one point to another as quickly and efficiently as possible. She smiles, "Oh, humans came up with a name for that huh?" I look at her, startled. She is no longer a little girl, but a grown woman, in her early thirties. She smiles and stands. "But you're wrong, Parkour is more than that. Parkour isn't movement." I look at the girl.

She stands over me, once again a girl of eight or nine. I can feel the intensity of her stare. She brushes the hair from my face and told me to sit up. I did so, compelled to obey, compelled to hear more. She pointed to my surroundings. Behind me, Bright and dark green trees, leafy and thriving had appeared. In the small forest, I could see a mountain, looming large and fierce, a sentinel guarding the strange landscape of my mind. She directs me back to the water. "What do you see around you?". And I proceeded to explain my surroundings. I stick to the simple "Trees, water, a cliff." explanation. She giggles and smacks my head. "You are distraught right now, so I'll cut you a bit of slack. What do you See? What do you Feel?" I look around and proceed to think. It slowly comes to me. "Life" is my answer.

   She smiles slowly and praises me. And then she asks "What does all life have in common?" I begin to think of the milion and one smartass answers I could give, but out of respect for the girl and our relationship, I withhold my remarks. I realize there could be one answer. "Energy?" I ask. She smiles again, and points around me. She walks to the water and walks in ankle-deep. Pure joy suffuses her face as she relishes the feeling of the cool water on her feet. She turns to me and says softly, "Energy is everywhere. It moves through us and our surroundings constantly. It is in the trees, in the rocks, in the water, in the air. It is in you, and it is in me. Energy is the thread that connects us to the world. Can you not see it?"

   I look around me and shake my head. "I can't see energy." I admit. The girl looks at me, almost disappointed, but somehow with a tenderness not shared with anyone else. "I can see energy, and I am a part of you. So you should be able to see it too. This is your world. You can do anything you want.  You just need to open your eyes." She beckons me into the water and takes my hand. She then bends my head over without touching my head and pushes my face into the water. The cool water brings relief and joy to me. I pull my face out of the water and open my eyes.

   LIGHT! Light everywhere! Bright, beautiful light, yet it doesn't burn my eyes! I look around and saw the light touched everything, and ran, as if in a current. The girl smiles at me, and speaks. "Do you see it now?" I turn to her, startled by the change in her voice. She is no longer a little girl, but a girl my own age, dressed in training pants, a T-shirt, and handwraps. She smiles at me and speakes softly. "This is the Flow. This is the current of energy that binds all of us to the world, that binds all of us to each other. It travels freely between all things." I am now smiling myself, marveling at the beauty of it all. She continues to speak, "This is what you're trying to touch. This is what you're trying to be. This is the flow of energy, of Life. To practice Parkour is to realize that the only obstacle that truly matters is your mind. Once you've conquered that, nothing in this world can stop you. To practice Parkour is become one with the Flow, it is to tap into the essence of life."

   I am beaming by this point, as I look upon my world with the Sight, I see all the places I could go, all the things I could do, and realize I have already done it. At this moment, I tap into the flow, letting the energy fill me and feeling it propel me forward. The girl ran ahead of me, beckoning me to follow her. She and I run in perfect synchronization, we run as one. I jump up and grasp the branches of the trees and as I do, my casts begin to unravel. As I reach the mountain, flipping and moving through my environment seamlessly, I ran up it and grasped a rock and begin to climb. My casts shattered at that moment.

   As I flew through my environment, I look around, and notice I am back in the city. I am back in the courtyard. I am standing before the young man and the wall. Completely confident in myself, I run at the wall without fear. As I climb over the ledge, the man smiles at me, and takes off. I run after him. We blow through our environment as if we are one with the city. I look to my left, and I see the girl, running and flashing her brilliant, all-knowing smile. To my right, I see the man, and I instantly realize why he looks so familiar.  He is Derek. He is Jason. He is my brother. He is Demon, and David Belle, Sebastien Foucan, Danny I., M2; He is me. We are all the same, drawn by our connection to the Flow. We are all one. We are all Free. We are all Traceurs.

  We run as one, in perfect synchronization, and double-leg as one off the edge of the building. I am happy, and suddenly wish that I would fly forever, that this dream would never end. As if on cue, the world around me begins to fade as I land.

  I wake up in a light sweat, breathing heavily. I look down at my arms, knowing they are still injured, but that doesn't bother me. I can't go back to sleep after that. I smile, get on the ground and begin to do sit-ups. When my arms heal, I won't take another moment for granted.


So, yeah, that was my dream. My philosophy is slowly becoming more and more mature. Has anyone else ever had dreams like this? Do you guys dream Parkour?  :o

EDIT: So I went back and re-read it and realized there were a lot of errors. Half of it was in present tense, half in past, I went ahead and changed it all to present tense, cleaned up the sentences to make it easier to understand.

Injury Reports / Swollen elbows and painful wrists, also thumb pain
« on: February 21, 2010, 02:41:55 PM »

Date of Injury: Feb 21, 2010
Time of injury (0:00 to 23:59): Roughly... 12:45-1:30
Your DOB and age: Sep 30, 1990; 19
name (remember this is the internet, name is helpful but not mandatory):Mel Martinez
City, State:Miami, FL
# years practicing Parkour / Freerunning:0 years, 3 months, 2 weeks
Hours of training per week. (real, not what you'd like to do)Roughly 14-16
Other exercise / fitness experience: 3 years of Aikido, 4 years of marching band( to those who don't say this is physical, you've clearly never been in marching band)
Location where injury occurred:Left elbow (worst), Right elbow (2nd worst), Both wrists (about the same, very minor, if a bit tender), Right thumb (least painful)
Conditions of location (wet, dark, icy, etc): Bright, sunny [WTF]
What you were doing / trying to do when injury occurred?: Practicing my Kong Vaults
Where any other people involved?: My tutor/sponsor/whatever was nearby, but I am responsible for my injury.
Part of body  - description of injury, rating of severity 1-10.:Left elbow- maybe a 4-5 , very swollen, tender, can't straighten out my arm or bend it to a certain degree, ergo I can't drive. Right elbow- 3 same stats as left elbow to a lesser degree. Both wrists- 2, tender, but at least I can rotate and stretch them. Right thumb- 1, maybe 1/2? VERY minor, but still achey after several hours,so worth mentioning.
Did you see a doctor for diagnosis?: No, costs too much.
Did you get X-rays or MRI's?N/A
Picture of the injury:Nope can't figure out how to work my webcam. :-\
Could you / how could you have avoided the injury?: The injury occurred because I continued to practice while fatigued, I didn't allow myself a break. I could have avoided it by giving a break every 5 reps and stretching during each break.
Date / type / severity of your last injury?:Last injury? Uhh...can't recall. The last major injury was at age 14, I broke my leg, definitely a 9 or 10. I broke my leg in 3 places while snowboarding, needed screws.. OWWW!!
Notes on the experience?:If I learned one thing from this experience is to take FREQUENT breaks. My injury never would have occurred if I took a break and continued at the top of my game. If any new traceur out there reading this, do NOT underestimate the power of the 5-minute break. If anything good came out of this, it's that I have become even more determined to get it right. I will NOT be discouraged!!

Training Journals / DB's Fitness Journal
« on: February 04, 2010, 01:18:40 PM »
So I've decided to start a fitness journal to track my progress in the study and practice of Parkour.

To be honest, I'm not all that fit. I'm hoping that this lifestyle will whip me into shape in a fun, creative way. To that end, i have compiled some basic information as well as long term goals.

189 lbs
Roughly 15% body fat (not sure on the exact number)
Definitely a level one athlete

Long term goals:

() Lose 10 pounds of fat by April 15th
() Gain 10 pounds of muscle by April 15th
() Be able to run 2 miles without stopping by May 1st
() Conquer my phobia of heights with a 10 ft jump by the end of the year (I know this may be a bit extreme, and in truth, I don't expect to make this one, but I was always taught to dream big)

I've decided that in times where I have nothing to do, I will work out and practice Parkour. Never for more than 1 hour if I've been practicing a lot. I don't want to overwork myself.

I don't know how to alter my diet to supplement this. I eat fruits and veggies as much as possible already, but I admit my diet is a poor one. I think lowering my sugar consumption is the first step, to that end, I'm cutting soda out of my diet (with exception of my cheat days, which is either saturday or sunday). Any other tips?

Note: I've decided to also include my thoughts and feelings in my daily journal. I'm a firm believer that mental health is just as important, if not more important, than physical health.

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