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Messages - Jan-Su

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Movement / Re: Kongs easier than monkeys?
« on: November 11, 2015, 09:55:47 PM »
Interesting, Redbeard. I think what you call the monkey vault, I personally like to call the kong vault. And what you describe as the kong vault, I actually call it the dive kong, or the long kong.

I'm the opposite, though. I can only do shorter kongs for now. And I'm still trying to see if I can relearn the split takeoff first before adding speed and/or distance, as I detailed in one of my earlier threads. (Honestly, can spring get here any sooner? Can't wait to get to build my own vault box! ^.^)

Parkour And Freerunning / Re: Join gymnastic class to help parkour?
« on: October 24, 2015, 06:46:55 PM »
If you're brand new to parkour, I might save those big, flashy, stunt like moves for when you are more advanced. Make sure you've got the basics down first, such as knowing how to land and roll. Learn them, learn them, learn them.

I never thought I might say this, but I might agree with a certain individual on these forums regarding first-time gym visits, albeit for slightly different reasons. I probably would not go straight to a gym right away if you're so new. I'd go outside to one's locales first and see if there's any potential obstacle you can do something on, no matter how bad your outdoor spots seem. At least this promotes exploration, as well as body awareness, and awareness of your surroundings. Then I guess you can go to a gym for more variety or instruction if your outdoor spots are really insufficient (like mine).

I'm not saying that you should never go to a facility for parkour, but rather, that it does not always have to be your only option for training.

Parkour / Re: How to kong vault a picnic table longways?
« on: September 13, 2015, 09:41:27 AM »
Another useful thread from the past! (I wonder how many other hidden gems the APK forums might still have. Thank you, Google search results.)

Interesting. Seems like the debate between combined and split take offs were still the rage even years ago. steve dahlin, that video you shared with that really high kong was pretty impressive. And Akayokaki, thank you for sharing your video. That's actually how I look like when I've been doing some of my kongs on a certain picnic table near my high school track. Although when trying it long ways, I of course don't do it with the intention of actually clearing the entire table. I just do it to see how far I can get on it, since at this point, it's really way too long to consider vaulting that far. The table I use is just under 8 ft. long from non-bench side to non-bench side, and I can only get about a third to a little less than half way on it.

I'm still trying to kong over said table on its bench sides, which isn't nearly as long, but I'm wondering if I should try other progressions first before finally attempting the whole thing (and I'm wondering if there are even any progressions for something like this at all). Maybe I should really practice diving and getting my butt up first; I've been rather lacking in those. And I should do it on a softer surface like our couch or my mom's bed just in case.

Man, I can still see a list of things that can go wrong with me trying to attempt to kong that far and fast. With the outer tips of bench to bench about 5 ft., one would have to be able to clear at least 6.5-7.5 ft. in less than a second. I did some conversion calculations, and that's at least a brisk jogging pace by now, not your strolling-through-the-park kind of jog.

Might was well do what I can while the weather's still nice. There's no guarantee I'll ever have the money to buy the materials for my own vault box, and next spring is a long time to wait.

Damn you, limited training spots...

Parkour / Re: Climb up muscle and technique?
« on: September 12, 2015, 08:08:07 AM »
For pull ups specifically, I can suggest trying what are called negative pull ups.

Stand on something (or jump) so that you're already propped up to the highest position of a pull up. From there, slowly lower yourself for like four or five counts. These should eventually help build the strength to do pull ups.

Because if you think about it, the pulling yourself up part is actually only half the story. There's also lowering yourself back down. You can actually lower much more weight than you can lift. Just because you might not yet have the strength to pull yourself up, doesn't mean you shouldn't have the strength to slowly lower yourself in a controlled manner.

I used negative pull ups when I first started lifting weights this time of year six years ago. They helped me a lot with getting my first few pull ups down. Today, I usually do weighted pull ups as regular pull ups with just my body weight are too easy for me.

Wait, this looks like the exact pdf vault box diagram I found recently. I never knew there was once a thread about it. Wow.

Okay, I know this thread is more than 3-6+ years old, but out of curiosity, has anyone else in these forums managed to build this particular model?

Also, I've got a few questions for this thread's original author(s). Why can't the #6 and #7 pieces all be 27" instead? That would place the two #1 pieces exactly in the middle of the box. And should the top plywood sheet always be 1" thick? I've looked, but neither Home Depot or Lowe's seem to have 1" sheets, only 3/4".

I've also begun trying to estimate the possible construction costs of this whole rig, and including all the 2x4s, the 2x6, the plywood sheets, and the paint and primer, I'm getting at least between $100 and $150. This is assuming you also already have nails/screws and a saw/drill. But costs for each of these materials might vary depending on where you live.

Movement / Re: Kong Vault takeoff: split or combined?
« on: August 19, 2015, 05:44:19 PM »
Nice to meet you, Scott. Always good to hear from someone in my area.

I wasn't sure what you meant at first actually, but thanks for explaining. Unfortunately, I don't think my town has handicapped picnic tables. Even if there are a few, they're likely used for indoor purposes only in certain businesses, and they surely won't allow someone to be jumping around on them.

But yeah, having a bench on both sides of the table makes it that much harder to clear. That's a lot of horizontal distance to cover, and you'd already have to be moving quite fast. My fears are that my feet would clip either the bench on the other side, or the edge of the table. Then my knees would hit either the ground, or the top of the other bench, both of which would hurt A LOT.

I can definitely attest to your other point, though. Bergen county is just not very obstacle dense. I think even my club's former president might agree. According to him, there are a few good spots in Bergen county, but they're far between. It's not like you could just walk/bike a few minutes from one spot to the next. You'd have to drive quite a few miles in between these spots. Chances are, maybe one lives closer to one of these spots, but too far to practically train at any of the others.

Everyone's scattered about, too. I've noticed there are a handful of individuals in Bergen county interested in parkour, but we all live way out in different towns. And with everyone having such different crazy and busy schedules, trying to organize a steady group that dedicatedly meets and trains regularly would be a near impossibility. Tragic. Maybe parkour is really only a pipe dream for an area like this.

I'm still considering building my own vault box in the future. I'm basing it from that PDF diagram of a vault box example from I'll have to wait until next spring to buy the materials, however, since I'm trying to save most of my money for school. It's high time I have something more proper to vault over. These picnic tables just won't do it for me anymore.

Parkour And Freerunning / Re: Summer training
« on: August 08, 2015, 08:50:55 AM »
How's it going, Tim? Always refreshing to hear from you.

Me? Eh, not terrible, but could and should be much better. To say that I've been bored out of my mind from my same, old, crappy training spots doesn't begin to describe it anymore. Not to mention that I may have even been kicked out of two of my former spots. This past Monday morning, 8/3, I was approached by an official from my high school saying that I can't be jumping around those picnic tables and bike racks. The track/oval and football field were fine, but not there. They used the cliched "no insurance" reason. So just like that I'm two spots less. Didn't know my town could actually be "anti-parkour".

This is bad. My situation(s) could be worse than I ever first realized. If I ever have the money for it, I'm now even considering the possibility of one day actually buying the materials so I can try building my own vault box at home. It's sad that it would have to come down to that, but so be it. At least if I had my own obstacle specifically dedicated to parkour right in my very own yard, I wouldn't have to worry about driving 20 mins. to my college campus, wasting gas, or even using up a bit of my energy biking to my high school, which has even worse spots.

I wonder if there's a correlation between how obstacle dense/good of outdoor spots an area has, and if that area has a strong, tight-knit parkour group. While I have noticed there are at least a few/handful of traceurs scattered all about in my area, parkour is still pretty much unheard of in my county. And yet, right across the river in the city, there's the Movement Creative, who train/hold classes pretty much every/most days of every/most weeks. I think it's just a sad fact that my area is just not very conducive to parkour at all.

Those of you who do have good outdoor spots right nearby, a dedicated PK group who can meet and train regularly, a schedule that can still allow ample training time, and a town that supports parkour, I envy you. So badly. Just consider yourselves very, very, very lucky, because not everyone is nearly as fortunate as you.

Well, let's see what little I can still squeeze out of what I do have, if it can even still be considered parkour training at all. I know it'll get too busy again once the fall semester starts. And especially if we'll end up with another polar disruption for the winter of 2015-2016, we're out of luck.

Movement / Re: Kong Vault takeoff: split or combined?
« on: August 03, 2015, 09:02:58 AM »
Okay, so I found a few more videos that appear closer to what I've been meaning. Andy Taylor from Zoic Nation (, "Flip" Rodriguez from Jump City and American Ninja Warrior (, and Sam Parham from 3runTube (

So what I've been calling the combined takeoff, some are calling the punch take off. My kongs look much closer to Andy's and Flip's demonstrations, as well as perhaps Sam's first demonstration.

The comments section on all of these have been a little mixed, though. Some say the combined/punch takeoff is better for higher, vertically-oriented kongs and the split takeoff is better for more speed and distance. I think they're right and I've noticed that myself. And others go so far as to say that the punch should be avoided completely, for reasons that still escape me.

My main concern is getting over the vault box/obstacle in the first place. Just about all the kongs I've ever done were always more vertically-oriented anyway. I'm not so worried about speed or distance (yet) as I don't think would consider attempting any kind of vault while moving faster than a jogging pace. I've tried konging on some picnic tables from the bench side, but as expected, could only get to the back edge of the table. I can't completely vault over the entire table and its benches (at least not with this kind of kong and with only a moderate speed).

I mean, I can touch the ceiling of my room if I jump with both of my legs, but cannot if I jump with only one leg.

Anyone else's thoughts? I'm wondering if it's too little, too late/dangerous to reorient my kong takeoffs.

Interesting selections. I know a few of these, but never imagined they could be parkour sounding. I'll have to look into the others.

I don't really listen to music while actually training, but occasionally might listen to something before I head out to train to try to set the mood. Here are some of the songs I have overall used the most in the past as part of my own parkour playlist(s).


The Rafters, by Moby (can be heard as the ending theme to the documentary, Sharkwater, by biologist and underwater filmmaker Rob Stewart. Sounds like a good song for the summer time in general, as well.)

Pompeii, by Bastille

Extreme Ways, also by Moby (can be heard as the ending theme of the Jason Bourne films. These sound good to flow to, in my opinion. The Identity/Supremacy version sounds lighter, while the Ultimatum version seems a little more explosive.)

I'mma Shine, from the dance movie, Step Up (I recommend the instrumental version; the vocals just drown out much of the music)

300 Violin Orchestra, by Jorge Quintero

Journey through the Victory, by Instrumental Core

this orchestral remix of the Eight Melodies from Mother/Earthbound Zero:


The following songs may not exactly be directly parkour sounding, but I felt they sort of spoke to me and my early history in my training, and in some ways, I can still relate to them today. I hope songs like these might also touch those of you traceurs out there who might be going through tough times, be it parkour-related or not.

When Your Feet Don't Touch the Ground, from the new Broadway musical, Finding Neverland (I suggest the version sung by cast members Matthew Morrison and Aidan Gemme)

You'll Be In My Heart, by Phil Collins (heard in the Disney animated film, Tarzan)

All You Need is Love, by The Beatles (I recommend the Blackberry cover.)

Movement / Re: Kong Vault takeoff: split or combined?
« on: July 25, 2015, 08:10:26 AM »
Gosh darn it!! Darn it to heck and back! No matter how many times I've attempted it, I just can't quite pull it off. It may have looked like from the beginning trajectory of my legs that they would sail right over, but at the very last instant, I abort the move and just come back down. Or if I do go over, I end up doing a different kind of vault than a split takeoff, fully forward facing kong.

It feels as if I might hit some part of my leg(s) on the edge of the low wall, or I would come down face/head first on to the ground on the other side. Maybe if I had someone spotting me, I might feel safer committing to the whole movement.

I think I may have found ways to minimize my speed/momentum loss when I use the combined takeoff, though. I figured if that's the main way I'll do it, I might as well get good/better at it.

I definitely know one thing I'll be working on if I ever revisit an indoor facility of some kind, should I ever decide to repursue the split takeoff. I just hope I won't get reprimanded by those in these forums who prefer/have mastered the split over the combined.

New Jersey / Re: North Jersey (Bergen County)
« on: July 23, 2015, 01:23:49 PM »
(Just realized I forgot to say this in my earlier posts here.)

Besides my high school, I also occasionally train in the main campus of Bergen Community College in Paramus, which surprisingly still has some decent spots to do stuff on.

Socialize / Re: Parkour super powers
« on: July 23, 2015, 01:07:34 PM »
I might benefit quite a bit from that, actually. Or if not unlimited, then at least enhanced/heightened stamina/endurance. Whenever I've been through a full day of training/jamming, it's like I need at least a few days of rest before I can optimally trace again.

New Jersey / Re: North Jersey (Bergen County)
« on: July 21, 2015, 01:50:55 PM »
Calling all parkour hopefuls near the New Jersey-New York border, especially Bergen and Rockland counties: you have to come check this place out as soon as you can. High Exposure is Bergen county’s new premier rock climbing/parkour/ninja warrior facility. I was there the other day for a one-day pass, and I was pretty impressed. If you’re looking for something new, fresh, and unique, I highly suggest visiting if you ever have the chance, especially as our counties are not very obstacle dense.

Also, for any and all Bergen County traceurs who didn’t know, there is a group on titled Bergen County Parkour and Freerunning: Come join! After a two year hiatus following a motorcycle injury and dealing with personal matters, our original host/organizer will be returning soon. Let’s make some meetup times and locations, get together, and see what we can do. The more we have, the more we can learn from each other! Plus, I'm curious as to what spots in our county you're currently using/have used to train!

Movement / Re: Kong Vault takeoff: split or combined?
« on: July 21, 2015, 01:43:01 PM »
So I think I may be starting to remember how I did my first ever kongs last fall when I went to that gymnastics facility. It was coming back to me in pieces when I visited that new parkour/rock climbing facility that recently opened near me, and when I reread my thread describing my first successful kongs. I probably did push off with one leg, but I quickly tucked in both legs close in front of me. I recall I looked similar to this image I found on Google as I was in midair, sailing right over the block mat.

I found a number of kong vault  tutorials on YouTube, with perhaps the Tapp Brothers’ video ( on it being the most comprehensive on how to progress with the split takeoff, although I couldn’t figure out at first why this version of the split takeoff still felt so awkward (the one where you swing your non-push off leg way backwards and up in an attempt to also help get your hips up). I’ve instead been trying to replicate how I did them last October now that I possibly remember it, but it still hasn’t been going that swimmingly.

If only I hadn’t gone so long between then and this mid/late spring without doing proper kongs, I wouldn’t have had to relearn the move almost altogether. I did at least retain a little bit, though, according to my club’s president (now instructor at our new facility); I didn’t have to start completely from square 1 as if I’d never done a kong before that. But my busy schedule, financial situation, the brutal winter, and still lack of that good outdoor spots near me certainly didn’t help either.

If all else fails, I might default back to using the combined takeoff for now for many of my kongs for a good portion of the foreseeable future. At least both legs can do what one leg alone sometimes cannot.

Movement / Kong Vault takeoff: split or combined?
« on: July 09, 2015, 08:13:43 AM »
So I've recently noticed some possible differences on whether one uses a single leg or both legs for the kong. Split takeoffs seem to flow into/from your run more, but combined takeoffs at least have more power behind them. However, with combined, when you bring both legs together to that one point just before you leap, it's like your momentum almost completely stops and you lose a bit of your forward motion.

I can't quite remember which way I was able to do my first ever kongs when I went to a gymnastics facility in October 2014, but I've preferred and have been doing the combined takeoff for the past few months, as they seem much safer. I just wanted to know what others have to chime in on these and which is the way one should probably be doing it.

Wait a minute. I thought my friend and parkour club president said something to me on our way to my second jam on 4/19 that he was helping out at building some kind of parkour-related facility up in my county. Could this be the one?

If this is truly it, it’s so great we finally have a facility dedicated to these elusive disciplines in our area! This is like a dream come true! I wouldn’t have to go so far now if I ever want to revisit such a gym! And yeah, I just browsed through their preliminary website; this place looks sweet!

Right now, though, I still prefer to train on one of my college campuses. I still got some unfinished business on some of my training spots there, and money is still tight as always. But if their opening date that you said here holds, that’s just a little more than a week after my birthday, and I might consider visiting them at least once this summer, either as a belated birthday present and/or to celebrate my first year so far doing parkour.

Speaking from my experiences, I sort of wished my first school had a student parkour organization of some kind as well, but all other things considered, I’m now thinking it might just be added unnecessary work, and that which might not be possible to get done. I’d have to look for a faculty advisor, and some people to be the executive board (president, vice president, etc.). But since parkour is almost completely unheard of in my area, such individuals for this kind of club would be difficult to come by. In fact, I’m probably the only traceur in my entire campus, at least, that I know of at this time. (And no, I don’t think I would qualify to be the head of even a small parkour group of any kind at the moment.)

Now I can tell you that in my school, our Student Activities Board (SAB) allots $500 per main semester, fall and spring, to the budgets of all official clubs. So that’s $1000 per academic year (although any leftovers from the fall cannot carry over to the spring, for some strange reason I’ve yet to discover). I’ve also heard of certain rewards some clubs could earn from having been able to hold a number of their own successful events throughout the semester.

So I’d ask a similar question that Alvendam and Inari gave; are there certain perks to having an official club in your school? In addition, would you need people to fill in the executive positions? And if so, can you find individuals who can meet the expectations of those roles adequately?

I’ve just not too long ago found a few spots at my school that I can use to train, and my sessions have been going decently even without a student parkour group in my school. At least I might not be bound to possibly too many rules otherwise. Almost anything goes and I can train how I want to. I’m trying to take advantage of it right now during the summer where there’s not as many students and faculty as in the fall and spring, so not as many people might question me what I’m doing. I also try to do it where our Public Safety does not patrol nearly as much so that I won’t get in trouble with them.

National Jams / Re: BEAST COAST 2015
« on: May 27, 2015, 11:31:27 AM »
Tim, welcome back! (Or if you're not back yet, hope you have a safe return trip.) So how was Beast 2015? I'm sure it was nothing short of incredible, wasn't it? I'm curious; which workshop did you choose to attend?

Movement / Re: Basic Techniques
« on: May 27, 2015, 11:28:13 AM »
Well, I'm not a dietitian or nutritionist, but I guess you can start with replacing sodas and sugary drinks with just water. It re-hydrates you much better, too. And instead of potato chips, candy, or other junk food, you can go for nuts and fruits.

One of my parkour club’s members, who used to be a gymnast, theorizes that front flips are easier to start, but back flips are easier to land on. It could be a little easier to roll forward than to bring your legs and knees up and all the way around, but with a back flip, your eyes would catch sight of the ground sooner than a front flip would, and so, you’d know where to reposition your body upright again, react quickly, and land on your two feet.

So to me, I guess they sort of balance each other out. Whichever you decide to learn first is once again ultimately up to you, and good luck.

Ah, I vaguely remember briefly being interested in flips at one point, even a few years before I ever got into anything parkour, when I was still a student at my second school. I think it was when I used to go to some of our group exercise classes at our university recreation center. But that was my younger, less-mature self. I’m no longer interested in flips myself anymore right at this time, probably because they seem to be mostly entertainment and have less practicality compared to learning one’s vaults, jumps, climb-ups, etc., but who knows, like Dick said, it might be another challenge I’ll reconsider in the future after I felt I've gotten decent enough on my other goals.

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