Author Topic: How I learned to roll on concrete  (Read 3444 times)

Offline Argon

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How I learned to roll on concrete
« on: July 25, 2006, 06:04:38 PM »
Greetings, all. I don't claim to be a master of any aspect of parkour, but recently I surmounted my long-time mind f#ck of not being able to roll on concrete. I rarely see any discussion about this topic, so I thought I'd share what I've learned, and how I accomplished it. Feel free to add your insights; I'm still learning and I'm sure there are others on this forum who could use some pointers in this area.

1) Form

I wasn't about to attempt this without proper form, so after careuflly studying the tutorials here and elsewhere, I set out to perfect my rolling technique. I found practicing on grass to be sub-optimal, it gave too much and I was sloppy, and moreover, the grass was really itchy. I also noticed that I wasn't properlly turning during the roll. I was going almost straight down my back, rather than diagonally across it. To ammeliorate these problems, I found a wooden walkway with a railing, and a large doormat. I put the doormat right up next to the railing and dove at it at an angle, forcing me to roll diagonally. The hardness of the wood covered by the thin mat seemed ideal. It was hard enough to inflict minor bruises and scrapes, but it gave slightly and couldn't grind or break bones like concrete.

After only a few sessions of bruises and embarressing bails, I finally rid miyself of my old tendency to roll straight (left over from my time as a gymnast), and I had a roll that I felt would take the punch out of the concrete.

2) Function

However, I still couldn't bring myself to roll on hard surfaces. Something about diving headfirst at the solid, unforgiving stone stopped me in my tracks every time. I found that practicing by rolling from a crouched position was disingenuous. It was painful, slow, and didn't feel "right" like my nice, fast, rolls on the wooden walkway. I soon realized that most of my fear stemed from the fall towards the concrete, and that if I could remove this factor, I may be able to get over my fear.

Eventually I discovered that I could do this by rolling out of a kong performed at the base of a short set of stairs. At the height of the kong, my momentum was nearly all in the forwards direction, and I was falling very softly, being essentially at the apex of a jump. In this way, after only a few attempts, I was able to roll with less pain than I expereinced either on the wooden surface, or rolling on concrete from a stationary position. The concrete really forced me to quickly improve my technique, and soon I incorporated very easily it into other situations. I learned that the real impediment to my progression had merely been fear.


So, there you have it. My advice is topractice your form, and to try your first rolls as a follow up to a kong up onto a higher surface, so that you are moving forward quickly, but not falling very fast.
« Last Edit: July 25, 2006, 06:06:56 PM by Argon »
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Offline Strydzz

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Re: How I learned to roll on concrete
« Reply #1 on: July 25, 2006, 10:39:35 PM »
I will tell you how I learned to get over my fear of rolling on concrete. I would take off my shirt and practice my rolls on my conrete drive-way. I learned quick what to do and what not. My roll developed quite quick after doing that every day for 10 mins! That method is a little more hardcore, but it did the trick for me!
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Offline Josh Maciel

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Re: How I learned to roll on concrete
« Reply #2 on: July 26, 2006, 07:20:18 AM »
I actually never had a problem with rolling on concrete but I do for dive rolls on concrete.
There is no past, there is no future, there is only the present because that is all that matters.

A bad Traucer does a technique until he gets it right. A good Traucer does it until he can not get it wrong.-David Belle

Offline Feral Demon

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Re: How I learned to roll on concrete
« Reply #3 on: July 26, 2006, 11:06:21 AM »
yo argon.

for at ucf the best way to practice is to get to a place that has concrete into that dirt they have. I didn't have the problem with rolling on concrete because I didn't like rolling in the first place but also because of the itchy grass problem. I'm more willing to get dirty in a practice then have to come to a complete halt to take a shower to stop myself from scratching several layers of skin off of my body. Of course the best way to get better at it is to keep on practicing man. Repitition is key type of stuff.

Offline Unique

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Re: How I learned to roll on concrete
« Reply #4 on: August 03, 2006, 11:58:33 AM »
I keep tryin but My lower back hurt when I do one like a piece of my spine is out or somthing.
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Offline Josh Maciel

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Re: How I learned to roll on concrete
« Reply #5 on: August 04, 2006, 11:31:51 AM »
Its because you are rolling on it make a vid and post it so I can help with what you are doing wrong. You know rolling on concrete actually tells you what you are doing wrong its just a bit painful. I'll try to get a vid up of me doing a roll on concrete.

Edit: Crap forgot my camera isn't working. Well just try to get a vid and I'll see what you are doing wrong.
There is no past, there is no future, there is only the present because that is all that matters.

A bad Traucer does a technique until he gets it right. A good Traucer does it until he can not get it wrong.-David Belle

Offline Unique

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Re: How I learned to roll on concrete
« Reply #6 on: August 05, 2006, 09:29:56 AM »
Can't don't have a mini dv.
- “Don't wait for life to beat you. Move life to your own beat.” http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=AqXiSaVGnLI

Offline Flippusmn

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Re: How I learned to roll on concrete
« Reply #7 on: August 05, 2006, 06:46:45 PM »
I can do it just fine but I still hate rolling on concrete for some reason, maybe theres just that fear stuck and it won't go hmm. I'll try to try your methods ok.  :)
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Offline Josh Maciel

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Re: How I learned to roll on concrete
« Reply #8 on: August 07, 2006, 06:14:56 AM »
Man I want to do dive rolls on concrete just to show I can do it I probably could but lately I've just been trying to get farther on my dive roll.
There is no past, there is no future, there is only the present because that is all that matters.

A bad Traucer does a technique until he gets it right. A good Traucer does it until he can not get it wrong.-David Belle