“There’s no written code for Parkour, but pretty much every where you find the same principals . . . At some point, even the strongest person freezes on a jump. It teaches you humility and reminds you where you came from.” That’s why no one ever finishes a challenge alone . . . “Parkour was always about community” (pg. 154)
In his book, Natural Born Heroes, Chris McDougall is arguing that mankind can do much more than what we’ve come to believe. Heroes and acts of heroism were once normal, common, and expected. Now, they’re the exception. Largely because we’ve forgotten what our bodies can do. What they were made to do. And why they were made to do them: to live, and to serve.
Parkour, according to McDougall, is a modern day example of what we’ve lost. The real obstacle to Parkour isn’t strength, it’s trust. “I never knew what my body could do,” Shirley Darlington, a Parkour participant and leader of the movement, explains, “so it took a long time to build the confidence to throw my full weight into a movement” . . . “Once I did, it changed everything.”
Her body, her mind, and her sense of belonging.
She now runs a Parkour movement where on any given night, she will email her Parkour group telling them when and where to meet. From there, the city is their gym, their playground, their sanctuary. “You’re always on the edge of fear,” Shirley explained, “because your body senses it can do more than your mind will let it.”
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