Members of The Showroom Parkour Club are looking to the future with excitement after Parkour, the discipline of movement, has now been officially recognised as a sport by the UK’s Sports Councils.
The formal recognition of Parkour/Freerunning as a sport came on Tuesday, January 10, 2017, announced by the Minister for Sport, Tracey Crouch, at Westminster Academy’s L.E.A.P. Park – currently the UK’s largest outdoor Parkour and FreeRunning facility.
“I want people to get out there and find the sport and physical activity that appeals to them and Parkour is certainly a fun, creative and innovative option” said Tracey.
“I am pleased that it has been recognised as a sport… The sport promotes movement and using the great outdoors as a space to get active in and I encourage people to don their trainers and give it a go.”
Joe Hicks, Head Coach for The Showroom Parkour Club, explains his definition of Parkour;
“Parkour, also known as FreeRunning or by the original French name of ‘L’art Du Déplacement’, is the discipline of navigating obstacles through efficient and controlled movement relevant to an individual.”
He describes Parkour as closer to a Martial Art; “we teach all of our students as individuals, aiming to develop general physical literacy, but also self-restraint and the individuals’ ‘vision’ – their ability to confidently understand their own physical abilities and limits.”
“We run over a dozen sessions a week, coaching over one hundred and fifty young people with particular experience in SEND+, Youth Engagement and Alternative Education provision.”
“Our sessions encourage participation in non-competitive physical activity, creativity, problem solving, and self-awareness whilst continuing to build our friendly, respectful pro-social community of young, next-generation Traceurs*!” (*Parkour Practitioners)
Throughout Parkour’s massive growth over the past two decades, the media coverage of the sport has led to controversy and misinterpretation of what the sport actually is.