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Parkour WOD

Parkour WOD: 09/05/12

by on Sep.04, 2012, under Parkour WOD

Parkour WOD 12

What are we training?: Cranes

According to the Parkour Wiki (which is an amazing resource for beginning practictioners, a crane is:

The Crane is a technique for progressing onto high objects which which are taller than you are. Cranes also serve as an accurate way to land onto of an obstacle from a running jump, precision technique, or vault. The landing of a crane involves the practitioner landing with his or her leg on top of the object, with the toe of the other foot perpendicularly touching the side of that object. There are some variations to the crane, though rather than personal taste, each variation is used for a different speeds and environments.

How can you practice it?:

To start practicing the crane for the first time, find an obstacle that you can comfortably jump onto with both feet. Now is not the time to impress your friends with your 36-inch standing jump (that comes later). Jump to the top of the obstacle using both feet a couple of times to familiarize yourself with the height. Once you have done that, take a couple of steps back and prepare yourself for your first crane!

You’ll want to decide which foot you’ll be using to land on the top of the obstacle. In most cases you’ll use your dominant foot. If you’re not sure which foot is dominant, you can try with both feet to see which leg feels more comfortable. You’ll want to step about 2 to 3 feet away from the obstacle prior to starting the movement.

If you’re landing with your right foot, you’ll start the movement by taking two steps, leading with your right foot and followed by your left. Instead of taking a third step with your right foot, you’re going to throw your right knee up in front of you, while also taking off with your left foot. Throwing the knee up is what gives you height in the movement. Ideally, you should be far enough away from the obstacle at your take-off point to allow you to land comfortably on top of it. As with most parkour movements, you should take your momentum UP, not horizontal to the ground.

As you land, you’re going to keep that back leg semi-straight (there should be a slight bend at the knee) while using the ball of your back foot (left in this instance) to trap against the side of the obstacle. This is super important as by trapping your foot against the side of the obstacle it will keep your back knee and shin from hitting the obstacle.

Once you have landed in this position, you then use your forward leg (the leg on top of the obstacle) to lift yourself up. It is very similar to a single leg squat.

The crane is one of the most fluid movements in parkour. If you do it right, you should almost feel as if you are floating to the top of the obstacle. You should not be landing with a lot of force when performing a crane. As always, attempt to have “ninja feet” and land as quietly as possible.

When you start learning to crane, or if you are trying to crane something that is at a challenging height, there is nothing wrong with using your hands to help you get to the top of the obstacle.

Why is this important?

The crane is an important movement because it allows you to scale taller obstacles than you could with a precision jump. It can also be more efficient than a cat leap when running towards an obstacle that is taller than you waist but less tall than your shoulders. Further, it is a very fluid movement that will help you with your “flow” when performing multiple movements in succession.

The WOD:

Warm Up:

3 rounds of 10 push ups, 10 sit ups and parkour squats

etudiant

Pick an obstacle that you are able to jump to with both legs. Step back and practice the crane.

Perform 15 repetitions with each leg.

avancee

You should be familiar with the movement and be able to perform it efficiently and correctly.

Pick an obstacle that you can NOT jump to with both legs, but that you can safely crane.

Perform 20 repetitions with each leg.

traceur

You should be VERY familiar with the movement and be able to perform it perfectly and multiple different heights.

Perform 20 repetitions each leg. The height of the obstacle should be challenging.

Note: These WODs are NOT for time. Learn the movement to the best of your ability. The crane does not count if you did not stick your landing!

etudiant
On the minute, and for 10 minutes, perform the following:

2 push ups
5 sit ups
7 squats

avancee
On the minute, and for 15 minutes, perform the following:

4 push ups
7 sit ups
9 squats

traceur
On the minute, and for 20 minutes, perform the following:

5 push ups
8 sit ups
13 squats

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Parkour WOD: 08/30/12 (Quadrupedal Movement)

by on Aug.30, 2012, under Parkour WOD

Parkor WOD 12

What are we training?: Quadrupedal Movement

Quadrupedal Movement (QM) is a functional movement that can be used to navigate over difficult terrain and/or thin and long obstacles. The purpose of QM is to maintain stability and balance in your movement. Bipedal movement, while efficient, is not necessarily the best method when navigating certain environments. For instance, if you had to walk along a thin ledge with a large drop on both sides, it would be better for you to have four points of contact (as well as a lower center of gravity) than two.

How can you practice it?:

Forward QM
Get down on your hands and knees, placing your hands directly underneath your chest as if you were going to start doing push ups. Keep your knees directly underneath your hips. If you have done yoga before, this is very similar to a table-top position. Then lift your knees off the ground. You should be fully supporting yourself on your hands and feet. The weight should be balanced. You should not be top or bottom heavy. Now that you are in the start position, you can begin your movement. Pick an arm that you are going to start with. You are going to move forward using that arm AND the opposite leg. You should move these appendages at the same time. KEY NOTE: When moving your leg, do not move your knee more than 3-5 inches past your hip. Keep your torso elongated and your head slightly up. Then move your other arm and opposite leg. Continue going forward.

If you find yourself moving the same-side arm and leg, reset the start position and begin from the top.

Backward QM
This is the EXACT same movement as the forward QM, except you are going backward. This is exponentially more difficult than forward QM, but you can make it easier by not extending your foot too far back behind you. Your knees should still only move about 3-5 inches past your hips.

Why is this important?

This is a functional movement that will improve your proprioception (your sense of your body position) and functional strength. It has real-world applications and is something that ZombieFit uses in its conditioning WODs.

The WOD:

Warm Up:

3 rounds of 10 push ups, 10 sit ups and parkour squats

etudiant
50M forward QM
50M backwards QM

avancee
100M forward QM
100M backward QM

traceur
150M forward QM
100M backward QM

Note: *Remember, this is NOT a conditioning WOD. Take your time and think about the movement. Master it and make it perfect. If it doesn’t feel right or if something hurts, you are likely doing it incorrectly.

Conditioning WOD:

For time, complete the following:

etudiant
3 rounds for time of:

25M forward or backwards QM
25 air squats
25 jumpings jacks

avancee
4 rounds for time of:

25M forward or backwards QM
25 air squats
25 push ups

traceur
5 rounds for time of:

25M forward or backwards QM
25 air squats
25 push ups

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Parkour WOD: 08/25/12 (Kong Vaults)

by on Aug.25, 2012, under Parkour WOD

Want to thank all those that came out to Thursday’s class! I had an amazing time and thought y’all kicked complete ass during that difficult conditioning! Keep up the great work guys and ladies.

Parkor WOD 11

What are we training?: Kong Vaults

A kong vault is one of the most important (and fun!) movements you will do in parkour. The reason it is so important is that this movement is used to connect to other movements in a variety of ways, such as a kong-to-precision (a vault to a precise landing) or a kong-to-cat (a vault to a cat leap). Further, because of the mechanism of the movement you are able to surmount a large variety of obstacles. You can vault long, short, tall and low objects with this movement.

Warning:

If you are brand new to vaulting, then you should attempt to practice this in a gym area or somewhere with padding. If you have to practice it for the first time outside, please be careful and make sure you have a soft landing/padding in case you fall. Be familiar with safety rolls! It is essential you have the ability to roll out of a bad vault.

^You may have seen the above in our previous lesson for safety vaults. And this is even more true for kong vaults. This movement is more challenging than a safety vault, and can result in injury. BE CAREFUL. There may be a tendency to not commit to the vault and clip your toes on the top of the object you are attempting to go over. If you do that, you may very well end up going head first into the ground. Know your safety rolls! Do NOT attempt this on any objects higher than your waist until you have mastered the movement.

How can you practice it?:

Pick an object that you can comfortably jump on from a standing position. If you cannot jump to it from a standstill, find a lower object. Further, pick an object that is relatively thin, i.e. no more than two hand-lengths wide. Walk up to the object and stand about six inches in front of it. Place your hands on the top of the object and jump. The goal is to have your feet land in-between the space where your hands were. Perform this ten times. If you can comfortably do this, then you are ready for the next step. If you cannot perform this maneuver, find a lower object.

As always, CHECK ALL OBSTACLES or OBJECTS BEFORE JUMPING OVER OR ON THEM. Make sure to check for stability and to make sure there isn’t a 20 foot drop (or zombies!) on the other side.

As you can see with the video above, you’ll want to take a short run-up to the object before the take-off. The key here is to make sure your knees and toes clear the lip of the object. It is perfectly okay for you to just jump to the top of the object the first 5 or 20 times you perform this movement. The take-off, as you can see in the video above, is a single-leg take-off. A lot of beginners will do a double-leg “stomp” to get over the obstacle. While this may feel comfortable, you are actually killing your momentum and power by driving your legs into the ground. Attempt to take-off with a single-leg.

Take-off
Stand about a pace away from the obstacle and take a step with the leg you’ll be using during the take-off (this would be the leg you lift in the crane movement), and then take another step with your opposite foot. The next step is where you will take-off. You are driving that take-off knee in the air while pushing off the ground (during your natural stride) with the back foot.

Hand placement
As you are heading toward the obstacle you are maintaining a long torso and reaching for the center of the obstacle. Your hands should land at approximately shoulder width apart (as if you were doing a push-up) and with enough room for your legs to follow through. When your hands are on the object, your chest should be directly over them. At this time, you’ll be pushing through the obstacle to create upward momentum. This will help your body clear the object (and also prepare you for kongs-to-cats) as it creates height and distance from the object. The push with your arms and chest is quick but fluid.

Knee and leg placement
When your hands have landed on the object, you knees should have been brought up to a height that easily clears it. Use your natural stride and momentum to bring your legs up behind you. Look at the video above and notice how the vault looks natural and fluid. You’re not bunching up your legs, but just letting them follow after the body. As you go over the object and are boosted by your hand movements, the legs naturally come through and you land in your stride. Try your best not to land with both feet (unless practicing kongs-to-precisions) as it may create a hard or forceful landing.

Why is this important?

As stated above, this movement is essential to any practitioner. If you want to continue to progress and learn different and more complicated movements, you must learn this vault.

The WOD:

Warm Up:

3 rounds of 10 push ups, 10 sit ups and parkour squats

etudiant

Find an obstacle that you can easily jump on and that you feel comfortable attempting a kong vault. Do not do this over concrete if you have never done it before! Find a gymnastics gym or put down a bouldering pad to make sure you are safe!

Perform 20 kong vaults.

avancee

You should be familiar with the movement and be able to perform it efficiently and correctly.

Pick an obstacle that is close to your waist in height.

Perform 30 kong vaults.

traceur

You should be VERY familiar with the movement and be able to perform it perfectly and at multiple different heights.

Find an object that is at your waist height or higher, but has a couple of feet in width. Concentrate on your take-off and landing. Make it fluid.

Perform 30 safety vaults.

Note: *Remember, this is NOT a conditioning WOD. Take your time and think about the movement. Master it and make it perfect. If it doesn’t feel right or if something hurts, you are likely doing it incorrectly. You should flow over the top of the obstacle.

Conditioning WOD:

For time, complete the following:

All levels:

On the minute, and for ten minutes, complete the following:

Sprint 100m
10 air squats

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Parkour WOD: 08/20/12 (Safety Vaults)

by on Aug.20, 2012, under Parkour WOD

Parkor WOD 10
What are we training?: Safety Vaults

A safety vault is one of the easiest and safest vaults to learn and is essential for beginners and traceurs alike. The movement, like all vaults, is used to navigate over an obstacle. The “safety” part of the vault comes from the fact that your outside foot touches the top of the obstacle on your way over it. This allows for more control and stability when performing the movement. This is great training for the novice as it is a perfect segue-way into a speed vault (which is essentially a safety vault without touching your outside foot to the obstacle). The more advanced practitioner should still practice this movement as it is perfect for obstacles that are slippery and/or unstable.

How can you practice it?:

If you are brand new to vaulting, then you should attempt to practice this in a gym area or somewhere with padding. If you have to practice it for the first time outside, please be careful and make sure you have a soft landing/padding in case you fall. Be familiar with safety rolls! It is essential you have the ability to roll out of a bad vault.

Pick an object that you can comfortably jump on, either with a crane or standing broad jump. ALWAYS check the obstacle or object for stability and safety. Make sure you know what is on the other side!

You’ll want to stand one full pace in front of the obstacle. Start toward the obstacle with your dominant foot first. You’ll take one more step with your non-dominant foot and then take-off while throwing your dominant foot up and to the side. As seen in the video, you should have two points of contact on the obstacle as you go over. Attempt to place your hand as close to the middle of the obstacle as possible. Keep your shoulders square as you go over and don’t let your hand hang behind you. At the top of the obstacle your outside/dominant foot should be placed on the object and you should slide your back/non-dominant foot underneath. Watch your knees! It is better to jump over the object completely than hit the top. As you come out the other side you’ll extend your back/non-dominant foot to the ground and land with staggered legs while still moving forward. You will not be sticking your landing!

If you’re having problems getting to the top of the obstacle, pick a smaller one or practice your crane.

As you get more comfortable with the movement, you may increase your speed and the distance on your take-off.

Why is this important?

As stated above, this movement is essential to any practitioner. It can be used to scale most objects and is one of parkour’s safer and less risky movements. This should become an essential part of your parkour toolset.

The WOD:

Warm Up:

3 rounds of 10 push ups, 10 sit ups and parkour squats

etudiant

Find an obstacle that you can easily jump on using a crane or precision.

Perform 25 safety-vaults.

avancee

You should be familiar with the movement and be able to perform it efficiently and correctly.

Pick an obstacle that is close to your waist in height.

Perform 30 safety-vaults.

traceur

You should be VERY familiar with the movement and be able to perform it perfectly and at multiple different heights.

Find an object that is at your waist height or higher, but has a couple of feet in width.

Perform 30 safety vaults.

Note: *Remember, this is NOT a conditioning WOD. Take your time and think about the movement. Master it and make it perfect. If it doesn’t feel right or if something hurts, you are likely doing it incorrectly. You should flow over the top of the obstacle.

Conditioning WOD:

For time, complete the following:

All levels:

Run 1 mile OR bike 3 miles OR row 2000m

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Parkour WOD: 08/13/12

by on Aug.13, 2012, under Parkour WOD

Parkor WOD 9

What are we training?: Balance. ((This may look familiar as we trained balance in Parkour Wod 1 and 4. Parkour requires repetition and diligence in learning certain skills. If we were to constantly go over new movements every Parkour WOD we would a) run out of movements and basic skills fairly quickly, and b) do a disservice to our students in not reinforcing certain behaviors and practice processes. As part of our programming, we will go routinely go over the same movements. However, we will change the conditioning portions of the WOD.))

One of the easiest things to train, but one of the hardest things to master is balance. If you ever watch parkour videos you’ll see traceurs walking on rails and ledges, usually with some empty space on either side of them. They make it look ridiculously easy. It’s not.

How can you practice it?:

One of the simplest ways to practice balance is to just walk in a straight line. You can walk along a curb (watch out for cars! Remember rule #1 of parkour: Don’t be stupid!), along a crack in a sidewalk or even on an imaginary line. Another easy exercise is to stand with your feet in front of one another (back foot’s toes touching your front foot’s heel) for minutes at a time. This can be made more difficult by lowering your body till your butt touches your heels. Whenever you are outside take the opportunity to work on your balance. The world is your gym, use it safely and extensively. DON’T try to balance on an overpass railing. DO walk on parking blocks in an empty parking lot. DON’T attempt a wet, metal rail as your first exposure to balance training. DO have a fantastic safety roll before you ever try balancing on anything at your height or taller.

Why is this important?

Body control. Parkour is all about how you can use your body to move through space. Having a greater awareness of your body and the ability to stabilize it in different situations is key. By training balance you will increase the effectiveness of your body in making minute corrections. You’ll understand how important this is the first time you perform a kong-to-precision.

The WOD:

Warm Up:

3 rounds of 10 push ups, 10 sit ups and 10 air squats

etudiant

Stand on the ground in your bare feet (or with flat-soled shoes) with your feet side by side. Start with your left leg and raise your knee to your waist.

Do this on a four-count, i.e. it should take four beats to raise your knee till it is perpendicular to your waist. Hold for 4 beats then lower your knee till your foot is on the ground. This should also take 4 beats. Now repeat this with the right leg.

Do this 5 times with each leg then rest for 2 minutes.

Now, do the exact same exercise, but hold the leg perpendicular to your waist for 8 beats. You will notice your foot making minute adjustments as you attempt to balance, don’t resist this. A tip is to tighten your core (squeeze your abs) and pull up, as if there was a string attached to the center of your body and being pulled up to the sky.

If you are comfortable with this, feel free to perform the avancee level parkour WOD as well. If you cannot stay on a single leg for the majority of these repetitions then repeat the exercise.

avancee

After the warm-up do the etudiant this link. Start with the first and proceed slowly through each pose. Spend 15 seconds on each pose. Repeat 3 times. Make sure to alternate poses with both legs!

traceur

After the warm-up do the etudiant WOD.

Perform the yoga poses listed on this link. Start with the first and proceed slowly through each pose. Spend 25 seconds on each pose. Repeat 5 times. Make sure to alternate poses with both legs!

Conditioning:

All Levels will be performing an air squat, however you will be performing a squat with your feet in a straight line behind one another, which we’ll call a “balance squat”. You will start with your left foot in front of your right. For each squat you will bend at the knees while keeping your chest up. The heel of your back foot may come off the ground. The goal here is to keep your shoulers square and your upper body rigid. You’re letting the stabilization muscles in your feet and legs keep you from moving side to side.

etudiant

Perform 3 rounds of the following movements:

10 balance squats (5 with left in front, 5 with right in front)
10 push ups
10 balance squats (same as above)
10 sit ups

This is NOT for time. However you should be transitioning between movements with a minimal amount of rest.

avancee

Perform 5 rounds of the following:

10 balance squats (10 with left in front, 10 with the right in front)
20 push ups
10 balance squats (same as above)
20 sit ups

traceur

Perform 5 rounds of the following:

20 balance squats (10 with the left foot in front, 10 with the right in front)
20 push ups
20 balance squats (same as above)
20 sit ups

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