Parkour or free-running as it is more commonly known, originated in France and is the acrobatic and athletic discipline of individuals expressing athleticism, poise and balance by running over man-made obstacles – bearing similar characteristics to military assault courses.
In 2017 the UK became the first country in the world to officially recognise free-running as a sport. Having the required recognition from all of the UK Sports Councils* means organisations such as the sport’s National Governing Body – Parkour UK – are able to apply for Government Grants and National Lottery Funding for support and to develop facilities.
*There are five UK sports councils – Sport England, Sport Scotland, Sport Wales, Sport Northern Ireland and UK Sport.
The best free runners in the world compete annually in the Red Bull Art of Motion contest. YouTube is filled with videos of free runners – posted by both amateurs and professionals alike. The wide reaching audiences that these streamed videos attract, may be contributing to newcomers wanting to try out the sport. The National Governing Body for Parkour / Free-running in the UK have a wealth of information on their website (http://parkour.uk/). Here you can connect with local community clubs, parks, facilities and training centres.
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