I love doing what I do. Constantly learning and researching survival and preparedness opens a fascinating world of possibilities. From training, meeting people, to studying, I just love it. There’s hardly any skill or field of knowledge that can’t be associated to survival and preparedness in one way or another.
If I’m talking with a machinist or blacksmith I’ll ask about metal types, if it’s a doctor there’s lots to learn from him, from first aid to human anatomy info that can be used in fights, if it’s a pilot I’d ask about emergency procedures, types of accidents and so on. If its an economist I’d like to know what he thinks about the current situation. If its just an average Joe driving me somewhere I may learn about his life experiences as well, like I did today.
In many ways, at least in my opinion, survival is about exploiting your potentiality of what you can be as a person to its maximum. I’ve heard people telling me “You can’t own a gun. Isn’t it illegal in Argentina?” Yes, you can, and no, its not illegal. (but notice how the person creates a limit to what he can and can’t do before even knowing if that limit even exists) “It’s not safe to own guns! You’re not a cop!” An Argentine cops fires 25 rounds during his entire training, I fire 500-800 rounds per training course. These are just examples of things we’re supposedly not capable of doing but we really are if we make the effort. You can train, you can learn, you can masters skills, and you can mold your life to be anything you want, the limit is mostly mentally.
Looking for information on how to properly perform a roll I came across Parkour. I’ve heard about it before of course, but never really looked into it. One of my life maxims is from “The Little Prince” and that’s to never let a question go unanswered, never let pass the opportunity to learn something new. In this case I didn’t know the first thing about Parkour (PK), only what I saw on a TV report once, mostly some kids jumping buildings. My first thought was “yes, pretty silly to risk your life that way”. Turns out there’s a lot more to PK than just Hollywood stunts.
Parkour is the art of moving from one point to the other overcoming obstacles, most often urban obstacles, in the most efficient way possible. In a more advanced stage it leads to pretty impressive acrobatics, often seen in movies where there’s chase scenes. Casino Royale, Bourne, Die Hard 4, the last Hulk movie, there’s hardly a big box action movie these days without Parkour scenes. But this is only the most advanced, most acrobatic part of it, there’s a lot more that while not as flashy is still pretty useful, useful enough that the US Marine Corps are incorporating t to their training.
Jumping from one building to another may not be your idea of fun, but there’s still a lot you can do without risking your life and even a little PK may come in handy.
From what little I have seen, climbing walls, jumping and learning how to fall from high places, dissipating the energy so as to not injure yourself are among the most useful techniques.
Of course its an outstanding physical activity from the fitness point of view, involving flexibility, strength, cardio and balance. PK and its origins, including the méthode naturell, have a philosophical side to it that I find strongly linked to survival and preparedness. If “adapt and overcome” isn’t about survival I don’t know what it is. (read more here http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Parkour )
Here’s some PK clips. Of course a good fitness level is needed, but some of the basic moves aren’t that demanding.
Advanced PK by one of its founders David Belle
OK, now that everyone saw that and though “I’ll never do that”, here’s some basic stuff everyone can start with and is still pretty useful. I’d be happy with some basic precision jumping, lazy vault, jump and roll, learning how to fall and climb a wall.
A little Parkour may go a long way when being chased, avoiding obstacles after a disaster, and of course its great fitness workout.
Interested? Find people to PK with near you.
Take care folks,