A sport originating from French special military force training has arrived in Provo and is becoming more popular throughout Utah.
Parkour, also known by its alias “street running,” is all about getting from point A to point B the fastest way possible. As the fastest route sometimes involves jumping from one building to another, and other crazy stunts, Parkour has become a Youtube sensation.
Tricks are a big part of Parkour. There are now professional free running teams and competitions.
Parkour has found its way into movies and other parts of pop culture. For example, the 007 movie “Casino Royale” opens with a Parkour chase scene through a construction site. A well-known French film has an impressive scene as well.
Robert Bennett, a UVU student from San Jose, Calif., now teaches Parkour classes in Provo. He said he has taught about a hundred people the art of Parkour.
“Parkour is about fluid motion,” Bennett taught his class. “It’s about momentum.”
Classes meet from Monday to Thursday at The Center in Provo.
Bennett said that Parkour is booming in Utah, with a number of different organizations meeting to practice and train together or have competitions. Bennett recently competed in a competition in Salt Lake City.
Parkour is different than other sports in that it isn’t meant to be competitive. Some won’t take part in competitions, Bennett said, because they feel that would compromise the integrity of the sport.
“Its a personal thing,” he said. “It pushes me personally.”
Watch Bennett perform some more advanced moves after his class: