By Jakob Ronimous
Freerunning is an extreme sport that involves the person running around an area while showing off and using many natural obstacles to perform different maneuvers. It can be a fun exercise to train your body to adapt and run for long distances.
While it does have many similarities with parkour, freerunning is more about the quickest way to get from one place to another but with emphasis on being flashy. Parkour is more focused on being practical and serious.
A few common tricks in freerunning are as simple as front flips, but they can be as complex as the double cork. Both parkour and freerunning involve some of the same tricks, such as those flips.
A local freerunner, who wished to stay unnamed, says they usually run a mile per session, although they have been doing this for years and have a lot of training. An entry level freerunner should expect to have to train their running stamina greatly before they should expect to do the cool stunts they see on YouTube.
While having to train before you can do cool stunts can sound quite boring,the anonymous freerunner talked about her motivations.
“A single run can take me to many places, like, it’ll make you happier and healthier and can take your mind off bad things happening in your life,” the freerunner stated.
Most of the time, the best place to free run is a place where runners can just do what they want and go through natural obstacles. Despite how thrilling freerunning can be, it has some danger.
Jacob Caldwell, a freerunner from Whiteland, warns that freerunning is not what it looks like online.
“People will need to realize that there is much more to it than the parkour fails that flood the YouTube search,” Caldwell said.
A rising topic in the freerunning community is the inclusion in the olympics and how the IGF, the International Gymnastics Federation, could be trying to take over the sport. Some say they want to keep the IGF’s Olympic ambitions away from their sport. Just last year there was a meeting about separating the sport away from the Olympics. Caldwell also spoke about the IGF.
“The IGF has tired to take over the sport on multiple occasions but people have choose to fight back against it,” Caldwell explained.
Ultimately, the sport was not added to the 2020 Tokyo games, but still might get to join the ranks of swimming and gymnastics later on. Perhaps with the introduction of karate and softball, more people will push for the sport to be included. Though it could be added at a later date by the IGF, there will be many freerunners to speak out against them and defend their sport.