Tag: parkour training

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.


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.

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


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.


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.


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: 07/16/12 (landings)

by on Jul.16, 2012, under Parkour WOD

Parkour WOD 5

What are we training?: Landings.

This will not be a WOD to practice safety rolls, but one to practice landing at the end of a jump or precision. This should be how you land from most level movements, i.e. not from a height. You should ALWAYS roll when jumping or falling from any height greater than your shoulder.

How can you practice it?:

Landings are all about progression. You cannot start running and jumping off things without proper landing mechanics and without building up your muscle and tendon strength in your legs, ankles and feet. If you cannot perform 50 body-weight squats in a row without stopping, and without perfect form, you should not be landing from anything higher than 2 feet.

A parkour landing should begin at the jumping/precisioning point. Always make sure that you are landing in a safe area. Know what type of material you are jumping from and landing on (e.g. landing on slippery materials requires you to land perpendicularly to the ground so as not to slip forward or back). Also, you will always jump from your take-off point. Don’t just fall, even if you are at a height. I almost ruined my money-maker when I fell face-first off a wall when I just kind of fell and my toes clipped a recessed stone lip. Clear your feet from any obstacle at the beginning of the movement by getting some altitude.

As you leave your feet you should bring your knees up in front of you.

The reasoning for this is several-fold: 1) You will increase the height and distance of your jump by not leaving your feet behind you; 2) you will be able to pick your landing point and place your feet with more accuracy (if you jump with your feet trailing behind you, there is an increased chance of missing your precision point); and 3) you are in perfect position to absorb your landing with your legs.

When you are at the height of your jump or fall you need to extend your legs out underneath you.

You are not locking your knees, but keeping them slightly bent. You are almost reaching for the ground with your feet. You land on the balls of your feet and absorb the impact by going into a squat. You actively resist the fall by pushing against the ground as you come to a stop.

You do NOT land on your heels. You have a very large bone in your heel (the calcaneus) and it will hurt like a mother if you land directly on it. If you are practicing landing and it hurts you are doing it wrong. Stop what you’re doing and look at the movement again. Take this slow. You do not want to blow out your knees.

You do NOT keep your legs super loose and let your momentum take you all the way to the ground. Some people are super flexible and just collapse into themselves. Don’t do this. Use your quads and hamstrings to slow down the landing as you fall.

Why is this important?

Safety. Parkour is an incredible activity that can change your mental paradigm and how you look at the world. There are few things as satisfying as hitting a parkour movement for the first time. The other side of this coin is that parkour is dangerous. You can seriously hurt yourself doing the smallest movements if you do not pay attention to your surroundings or perform the movement properly. You need to be able to land properly and without hurting yourself.

Now, why is this landing safer and better for traceurs? Let’s do some physics.

The purpose of the parkour landing is to decrease the amount of force being applied to your body. Force is bad, mmmkay? Too much force puts unneeded stress on the body and its joints and bones which can result in injury and/or discomfort. Force can be described as:

F = m * a

m = mass and a = acceleration.

Further, acceleration can be described as:

a = (delta)Velocity/time

(delta)Velocity is the change in speed.

Hopefully our m is constant (if not you should probably go to the doctor, stop accelerating at near light speed), so the parkour landing is effectively reducing the force on our bodies by decreasing our acceleration.

Acceleration is decreased primarily via the extension of the legs. This gives the body a larger distance to travel prior to the ultimate stopping point (when movement is completed), and it also allows the traceur more time to slow his or her momentum going into the ground (by resisting the fall with your legs).

Another way to think about this is to imagine you are jumping from something and you land with your legs straight and/or locked. The impact is jarring because you come to a very quick stop, i.e. acceleration is very high as your speed changed very quickly over a short period of time.

By landing with your feet extended and then continuing the fall through that initial contact with the ground, you are extending the amount of time to complete the movement while also experiencing a decreased change in velocity. With ?Velocity being smaller and time being larger, acceleration has decreased, thereby resulting in less Force being applied to your body.

One tip that really helps with landing and reducing the force of the landing is to land with “ninja feet”. If you can land without making any sound then you are distributing the force adequately and safely.

The WOD:

Warm Up:

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



On the minute, for 10 minutes, perform an increasing number of broad jumps. In your first minute, perform 1 broad jump, in the second minute perform 2 broad jumps, etc. After you have performed the required number of broad jumps rest for the remaining time in the minute.


On the minute, for 15 minutes, perform an increasing number of broad jumps. In your first minute, perform 1 broad jump, in the second minute perform 2 broad jumps, etc. After you have performed the required number of broad jumps rest for the remaining time in the minute.


On the minute, for 20 minutes, perform an increasing number of broad jumps. In your first minute, perform 1 broad jump, in the second minute perform 2 broad jumps, etc. After you have performed the required number of broad jumps rest for the remaining time in the minute.

Cool Down:

All levels:

Read this ZombieFit Post on Ankle Conditioning

Perform 100 calf raises (50 each leg) x 2
Perform 100 toe raises (50 each leg) x 2

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WOD: 10/27/09

by on Oct.26, 2009, under WOD

Warm Up: run 1/2 mile, bike 1/2 mile, row 250 m.

3 rounds of: 10 parkour squats/air squats; 20 sit ups; 10 push ups



5 rounds for time of:

10 jumping pull ups; 10 sit ups; 10 twelve inch box jumps.


5 rounds for time of:

10 pull ups; 10 sit ups; 10 twenty-four inch box jumps


5 rounds for time of:

10 L-sit pull ups; 10 sit ups; 10 thirty-six inch box jumps

Cool Down

200m quadrupedal movement.

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