If you are searching for the best places for parkour training, but don’t know how to find them, you’ve come to the right article! This is a problem that many practitioners face. Whether you’re in the Alaskan tundra, the plains of Texas, or the beach of Florida, there are places to go for parkour training and practicing!
I’ll start by listing off things to keep an eye out for. Many of the best spots for training are hidden or don’t seem useful. It’ll take some creativity to make use of the places around you, especially if you don’t live in a city, so keep your eyes and your mind open to new things.
Where to Look for Parkour Training
This may sound silly to you, but playgrounds are excellent sites for parkour training to occur. While they used to be relatively uniform, newer playgrounds continue to get stranger and stranger. These new, odd obstacles will inspire creativity and allow for unique training if you allow your mind to be set free.
When I was a beginner, my friends and I trained at a local park called Legacy Play Village, which was made entirely of wood. All the cool structures provided a fantastic place to master the basics, but the wood wasn’t always best for the movements that would be more suited for concrete training. But that’s okay. The park was excellent for many things!
Keep an eye for parks and playgrounds, but make sure to be respectful to kids and families while you’re there.
College campuses generally pride themselves in elaborate structures, entree-ways, and courtyards, making them an excellent place get a variety of training in. The local university, Texas Tech, offers numerous places, each with their own specialties and quirks. While other places for training may be spread out, college campuses are bound to have several spots relatively close to each other!
Be careful about being in the way of students and staff, and always respect the campus security and authorities. If you run into trouble, which occasionally happens, simply leave and come back another day.
There were several churches that had great areas for parkour training that we visited frequently back in my day. One had several picnic tables that we would move around for different obstacle exercises and another had a series of walls where we would practice cat grabs and wall runs.
Still, be aware that some church members would prefer not to have you jumping around on their precious property. Respect that.
Forests? Yes! Forests! Parkour training is beautiful in the midst of nature. Use boulders, trees, and even animals (just kidding) to train in a new and exciting way. Nature training can be more difficult to experience since finding specific areas that lend toward a good practice environment is difficult. However, once you discover that set of trees and rocks, whether it’s in your backyard, on top of a mountain, or in a public park, you won’t regret the search.
The bark and rock will be rough on your hands initially, but feeling those naturally occurring surfaces will trigger something in you. You’ll have to be creative to locate and really milk these natural spots.
Sand is very forgiving. Public beaches often have pretty walkways and structures to lend toward the beauty of the scene. These can be excellent areas to train in. Freerunning is more commonly found here, since flipping into sand is more gentle than concrete and dirt, but parkour is completely possible too.
Look around, look again, and just start moving! Don’t forget sunscreen.
While for the most part parkour training will occur outside, gyms present an amazing opportunity for growth. Some things are simply just too intimidating to attempt outside for the first time. Soft floors and comfy pillows make that much less daunting. Be careful to not become so comfortable in a gym that performing the same or similar movement outside becomes merely a dream.
These places may require a small subscription or per visit fee, but are well worth it if you use your time wisely. Push your boundaries hard here so you know what you can handle on concrete. Then push your boundaries on concrete. Check out the Tempest Freerunning Academy!
There are many other places that would be fun to give parkour training a try such as open fields and theme parks, but if you’re just out of luck, consider these options. Search on Google and Facebook for local parkour communities. They’ll know where the good spots are and how to get you there.
You’re now on your way to becoming an expert at locating excellent places for parkour training, but you still lack one thing. Go out and do it! Be creative, try new things, go back to places you thought were not worth visiting. The thing that makes a spot a good spot is the trainer. So go, be free.