- About us
- History of Parkour & Freerunning
In 2007 UNTAMED started as an ambitious juvenile arts project.
We wanted to proove to ourselves that one can accomplish anything able to imagine.
Young. Aggressive & Playful we aimed to emerge into a socially engaged project
even though we were unsure how that format would look like. At that point of time PK &
Freerunning was not considered to be an urban art form.
Dr. John C. Lilly points out in three sentences that is totally obvious once stated, and yet will totally revolutionize your world once you begin to really understand it:
“In the province of the mind, what is believed true or is true or becomes true, within limits to be found, experimentally and experientially. These limits are further beliefs to be transcended. In the province of the mind there are no limits.”
Timothy Leary used to say it even more simply, back in the 1960s:
„You can be anything you want to be, this time around“.
Maybe we cannot change the world or make it better and maybe it is not even necessary.
But we can take care of our people, learn from each other and pass on knowledge to be able
to learn how we can utilize our resources to the fullest.
UNTAMED Parkour & Freerunning Association intends to support sports, youth and their
education aswell as to nourish our culture. We are working on promoting the UNTAMED Parkour & Freerunning Arena to the point where it becomes of public interest to realize that project.
Our work is beneficent by supporting people in difficult financial situations.
At UNTAMED® Parkour & Freerunning Arena you can train with us even if you have not the financial liquidity to pay us.
Together with our City Council we will find a way and leave doors open for everyone, especially Kids and Teenagers to have a place where they can get themselves together and going.
We will contribute our share to prevent delinquency by focusing on underprivileged urban districts.
Why Parkour & Freerunning or Urban Arts?
Many people talk about the global movement and the financial advantages, or the
fun that it offers to the spectators aswell as to the practitioner. We agree.
I would like to add the physical and psychological value to our athletes.
With every step you take, with every obstacle that you have overcome, the perspective
towards obstacles is changing into: I see options.
The habitual movement changes the practitioners point of view and bridges the gap
from physical action to challenges of everyday life.
By overcoming fear in many situations where our bodies are confronted with unusual,
non-habitual movements or simply because we jump from higher positions we learn
to get in control or even better to get ourselves together.
Another reason would be architecture to us.
Since architecture is part of our culture and has great influence on the people,
one could say that there is some kind of an energetic exchange from men to building as it is used swell When running thru the city a traceur energizes or rejuvenates his surroundings.
There are different kind of men.
Some like sports cause they can train among others and enjoy the company,
they make friendships, some may find a family or takeover social responsibilities.
Others want to physically feel themselves or they are looking for their personal limits,
or they are simply anxious for competition.
And some would be looking for spiritual development, philosophy and scientific findings
that training opens to them.
Parkour & Freerunning can offer all of the above and is a form of expression for the youth of our generation. According to the different styles you can draw conclusions to cultural backgrounds
Our body is becoming instrument of expression.
Parkour & Freerunning is the worlds largest phenomenon at the time. A new discipline which combines elements from military obstacle running, Martial Arts and gymnastics with is its own code of conduct.
Rigorous practice and applied wisdom allows the practitioners to develop their apparently Super-human abilities to the point where physical and psychological transcendence kicks in.
A new sport and lifestyle is out there, fueled by social media connectivity, the fundamental
joy of movement, blockbuster movies, games and the rapid formation of PK associations.
How you can take part or support that development?
Why don’t you come by for training?
We would be happy to welcome you.
Of course we are happy about new contacts, personnel and you can help with a donation.
Just let us know if we can help in any way and we are happy to be there for you.
Thank you for being there.
What is Parkour?
Originated in France “parcours” literally could be translatet as path or course.
In Equitation a Parcours would be a course of obstacles horse and rider want to overcome.
What we now know as “Parkour” with a “k” has its origins in a training program for French Special Forces known as “Parcours du combattant”.
It was David Belle, a French dude, son of the “inventor” of Parkour if you will, who changed the “c” to a “k” and, along with his comrades, the Yamakazi, began the worldwide movement you are now officially a part of and which also includes the phenomenon known as Freerunning.
Parkour is defined as the act of moving from point “a” to point “b” using the obstacles in your path to increase your efficiency. Doesn´t that sound like fun?
A basic repertoire of moves developed over the years, like the “gap jump”, the “kong vault” and the “wall flip” that make Parkour immediately recognizable to most people who see it, even if they don’t know what it’s called!
Then a funny thing happened on the way to Point B.
The cool & creative moves of Yamakazi and its members started to morph and develop, and since there was less chasing going for them- the efficiency part got less and less important to some of the Yamakazi,.
They wanted to start throwing flips and other airtime tricks and concentrated on more acrobatic moves, just generally expressing themselves through movement.
The leader of that splinter group was Sebastian Foucan, the guy from the beginning of CASINO ROYALE. David Belle decided to stick with the efficiency program, so he and Sebastian went their separate ways.
Two sports started developing along separate but parallel paths.
For a long time, people argued about which was which or what was better or first.
While they were busy doing that a whole bunch of new athletes came along and just started training.
The started to rehearse the moves they found on youtube and began to develop their own personal tricks and moves that played to their own strengths and interests. Some liked to time themselves, some were just out to express. Some did it in urban environments, some in the forest.
Some thought it should never be competitive or commercialized in any way. Some were anxious to compete, cause that was more in their nature. And what do all these busy people call what they do?
In the end, most of them decided it was all just movement,
and more importantly, it was all just play.
History of Parkour & Freerunning
In 1902, a volcano blew its top on the Caribbean island of Martinique.
A French naval officer, Lt. George Hébert valiantly coordinated the rescue and escape of over 700 people from the scene, both indigenous and European.
The experience had a profound effect on him as he watched people move, well or badly, around the obstacles in their path. The heroism and tragedy he witnessed on that day reinforced his belief that, to be of real value, athletic skill must be combined with courage and altruism, “Etre fort pour être utile” – “Be strong to be useful”.
Having traveled extensively, Hébert was impressed by the physical development and movement skills of indigenous peoples in Africa and elsewhere, and so created a physical training discipline that he called “the natural method” using climbing, running and man-made obstacle courses to recreate the natural environment.
His method soon became the basis for all French military training. Inspired by his work, French soldiers in the jungles of Vietnam developed what came to be known as, “parcours du combatant.”.
Years later, Raymond Belle, a former soldier in the French Special Forces, returned to his hometown of Lisses a suburban area of Paris, where he introduced his son David to the discipline of le parcours du combattant and the teachings of Hebert.
It was David Belle who set out to combine what he had learned from his father with his knowledge of gymnastics and martial arts, and voilà…PARKOUR was born.
Belle and then best friend, Sebastian Foucan established a group of traceurs (originally, people who practice Parkour) called the Yamikazi.
As the first organized group of traceurs the Yamikazi began to develop a following in France that came to include filmmaker Luc Besson. Besson’s film “The Yamakazi” accelerated the growth of Parkour.
It was also around that time that Sebastian began to go his own way starting what he called “Freerunning” which differed from strict Parkour in that it wasn’t just about the fastest way from point A to point B but also about how creative the movement could be.
From the late 90s onward, the underground movement continued to spread worldwide with Belle and Foucan at the helm of their respective followers, giving interviews, booking TV and film appearances, and guiding fans with their thoughts on competition and the philosophies of the sport.
In 2003, British filmmaker Mike Christie’s JUMP LONDON, followed by JUMP BRITAIN in 2005, depicted the growth of the sport on the streets of the UK’s largest city, where teams like URBAN FREEFLOW further developed their style of Freerunning, and began to dominate the London scene.
In 2004, David Belle re-appeared in French film Banlieu 13,
which gained something of a cult following outside of France.
But it wasn’t until Sebastian Foucan’s appearance in the awesome opening chase scene of the James Bond film CASINO ROYALE in 2006 that audiences around the world started to realize that something new and really exciting was a foot!
In that same year, the Madonna CONFESSIONS Tour and video further established Parkour in the public consciousness, with Sebastian, Levi Meeuwenberg and Victor Lopez and Oleg Vorslav as featured performers.
Finally, it was with the sudden game-changing arrival of YouTube in 2005, allowing freerunners
all over the world to post their videos and share their latest discoveries, that the movement truly went global.
What took the skateboarding Z-Boys 20 years to accomplish in bringing their sport to the mainstream, the young practitioners of Parkour did almost overnight.
In the years since, new leaders and pioneers have emerged who do not necessarily identify with Belle or Foucan and do not define themselves as following either Parkour or Freerunning. They simply call themselves Traceurs or more often Freerunners or just simply athletes who have studied the disciplines of Parkour and Freerunning to hone their apparently super-human skills.
Daniel Ilabaca and Ryan Doyle along with teams like 3Run in the UK and APK and Team Tempest in the US have further spread the sport and the message of Parkour, through their websites, classes, and appearances, on-screen and off.
In October of 2007, The RED BULL ART OF MOTION in Vienna was the first major competion around Parkour and Freerunning held anywhere in the world.
First place was taken by Airborn athlete Ryan Doyle, with Tempest athletes, Victor Lopez and Gabe Nunez tying for second, and Air Wipp athlete Marcus Gustavsson taking third.
Doyle experienced a bad leg break on his third and final round, reminding everyone that this was indeed a sport that entails considerable risk, and giving some justification to those who did and do believe that competition could have a negative impact on the sport and movement.
In September 2008 Urban Freeflow team, in partnership with Barclaycard, staged the first World Freerun Championship in London which was won by Tempest athlete Gabe Nunez. Second and third place were taken by Tim “Livewire” Shieff and Ben “Jenx” Jenkin, respectively.