Youve seen them bounding up walls and hurtling across rooftops in the latest action film, maybe even streaking across town. The ordinary rules of physics dont seem to apply to them, as if their hands have suction cups and their feet are shod in Go-Go Gadget sneakers but, in fact, they dont use any official equipment at all, just their agile bodies and fast-thinking minds. Theyre practitioners of parkour, the art/sport of moving up, over and through the environment as quickly and efficiently as possible.
Want to try it yourself? You dont need a love bite from a radioactive spider. Just attend the Denver classes of Colorado Parkour Academy, a ten-week program delineating the basics, from jumps and vaults to landing and rolling, that starts today at 11 a.m. at Gym Riki, 3333 South Tamarac Drive. Students are not only schooled in the fascinating philosophy of traceurs practitioners of parkour but are also guided through an intense physical fitness regimen. Its really unique, its something new and its getting more popular. It emphasizes natural types of fitness, the way our bodies are meant to be used, explains co-instructor Ryan Ford, whos also a member of Tribe, the U.S. professional parkour team. We are not meant to use treadmills. We are meant to run over stuff, climb over stuff, crawl over stuff and interact with our environments. Once you master the essentials, you can graduate to the intermediate class where they teach you how to fly. Courses are $155 for ten weeks, or $20 for a one-time drop-in; for more information, go to www.coloradoparkour.com.