Author Topic: My 12 year old son interested in parkour...any advice on where to start?  (Read 8486 times)

Offline cshusta

  • Oryctolagus Cuniculus
  • *
  • Posts: 2
  • Karma: +0/-0
    • View Profile
Hey,

My son is 12 and he is interested in parkour. Im not so familiar with it and I was wondering if anyone could give me some advice on where to start. Also, is 12 years old too young?

Thanks!

C

Offline John George 'JG'

  • Mangabey
  • ****
  • Posts: 369
  • Karma: +8/-1
    • View Profile
    • Bloomsburg Parkour (Columbia County)
Re: My 12 year old son interested in parkour...any advice on where to start?
« Reply #1 on: October 26, 2010, 08:05:57 PM »
There is a vast difference in conditioning between younger traceurs and older traceurs. At 12, your son's muscles are still developing. Younger kids practice gymnastics, so that right there shows that plyometrics (eg. pushups, situps, planks, and squats) are healthy for him. Try to stay away from weights and anything high-intensity, because his tendons are also still developing and splints may develop (the tendon begins to separate from the bone).

Since he is so young, I'd suggest just getting him moving. Introduce basic vaults and rolls. Show him what is possible. Get him climbing over things and crawling under things. Technique is not the most important thing at this stage (unless he is the athletic type, then get into technique right away). As his interest develops, then introduce proper technique.
« Last Edit: October 26, 2010, 08:30:18 PM by John George "JG" »
Parkour Endure founder - parkourendure.com
Lehigh Valley Parkour (member)
Level 1 ADAPT qualified instructor

Offline Jordan Strybos

  • Man of Skochy
  • Global Moderator
  • Hirundo Rustica
  • *****
  • Posts: 1337
  • Karma: +1337/-0
  • Lancaster, PA
    • View Profile
    • PKGA
Re: My 12 year old son interested in parkour...any advice on where to start?
« Reply #2 on: October 26, 2010, 09:12:00 PM »
Any age is never too young!! :D

Try looking at the APK Frequently Asked Questions Page for advice and answers to most of your questions. In addition, as JG said, the overall best thing you could do is just get him moving and familiar with movements. You can look up tutorials if you yourself don't feel educated enough to teach (I found UrbanCurrent's tutorials especially helpful, you can link to their YouTube page here.

Good luck, and if you feel so inclined, by all means, start learning with your son! It's never too late to learn :)

Offline Ninjatic Silver

  • Mangabey
  • ****
  • Posts: 324
  • Karma: +3/-0
  • It's just my...BASS CANNON!!!
    • View Profile
    • My facebook
Re: My 12 year old son interested in parkour...any advice on where to start?
« Reply #3 on: October 26, 2010, 09:30:48 PM »
Any age is never too young!! :D

Try looking at the APK Frequently Asked Questions Page for advice and answers to most of your questions. In addition, as JG said, the overall best thing you could do is just get him moving and familiar with movements. You can look up tutorials if you yourself don't feel educated enough to teach (I found UrbanCurrent's tutorials especially helpful, you can link to their YouTube page here.

Good luck, and if you feel so inclined, by all means, start learning with your son! It's never too late to learn :)
I second that. Especially the first part. I want my child to gain in parkour/freerunning as soon as possible. =D

Offline Dylan Antonsen

  • Mangabey
  • ****
  • Posts: 356
  • Karma: +4/-1
  • Have efficiency, will travel.
    • View Profile
Re: My 12 year old son interested in parkour...any advice on where to start?
« Reply #4 on: October 27, 2010, 04:21:20 AM »
I've met a 13 year old traceur who was like WAAAAYYYY better than me, so it IS possible, and healthy.
I would start him off pretty slow with the roll tutorial here http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=y6I1J0zmE7U
and make sure he has it 100% down before he does too much. Maybe start jogging with him in the mornings too?
Take him to the park and let him have fun jumping around things, getting used to vaulting over stuff.
Ten pushups, twenty crunches, twenty squats.
^My version of the ten pushups club.

Offline Matt_C

  • Guenons
  • **
  • Posts: 58
  • Karma: +0/-0
    • View Profile
Re: My 12 year old son interested in parkour...any advice on where to start?
« Reply #5 on: October 27, 2010, 05:30:31 AM »
I started swim classes since i was 5 so when I was all set for upper body strength when i started parkour

Offline Happy Fries

  • Mangabey
  • ****
  • Posts: 300
  • Karma: +0/-0
    • View Profile
Re: My 12 year old son interested in parkour...any advice on where to start?
« Reply #6 on: October 27, 2010, 07:09:28 AM »
There is a vast difference in conditioning between younger traceurs and older traceurs. At 12, your son's muscles are still developing. Younger kids practice gymnastics, so that right there shows that plyometrics (eg. pushups, situps, planks, and squats) are healthy for him. Try to stay away from weights and anything high-intensity, because his tendons are also still developing and splints may develop (the tendon begins to separate from the bone).

Since he is so young, I'd suggest just getting him moving. Introduce basic vaults and rolls. Show him what is possible. Get him climbing over things and crawling under things. Technique is not the most important thing at this stage (unless he is the athletic type, then get into technique right away). As his interest develops, then introduce proper technique.

.... Pushups, situps, planks, and squats are not pylometrics, they are simply body weight exercises... which isn't bad, of course, body weight is great, but real pylometrics shouldn't be done until an athlete has sent some time lifting heavy. And, there is nothing wrong with, say a 12 year old, lifting weights safely. I'm not sure where the idea that lifting separates tendons from bone came from... Maybe if the kid was lifting enough weight to give him a hernia. There's nothing wrong with high-intensity work either, playing "tag" is high intensity. A 12 year old will simply have a different level from an adult of what separates high- from -low.

Besides that, moving around is great.

C, if you haven't already, check out the banner on the APK homepage that says "Your journey starts here." It's not an ad, but a series of small articles about parkour and getting started.

Take your child to the park and let him climb on the playground toys. I'm sure he has an idea of what he wants to do.

That said, I wouldn't let him jump off the top of the playground.... Or anything high for that matter; since that is not what parkour is all about. If he really wants to jump off high things, explain that there's a lot of work that the people in videos do to build up strength before taking drops safely.

Kudos to you for taking the time to learn about what your son wants to do, and wanting to help him! :)
I stepped into a new world. I watched you fly, saw you as a friend, the spirit of dreams. I imagined a new world, lands far away and imagined those faces as you hung in their sky. I'm leaving ground, stepping into a new world.
- Airships

Offline cshusta

  • Oryctolagus Cuniculus
  • *
  • Posts: 2
  • Karma: +0/-0
    • View Profile
Re: My 12 year old son interested in parkour...any advice on where to start?
« Reply #7 on: October 27, 2010, 08:02:55 AM »
Thanks so much for all of the feedback! My trainer at the gym is doing crossfit with me, so maybe my son and I will get into this together eventually!

I'm excited to research all of your suggestions! Thanks again!

C

Offline Macgyver 0.

  • Mangabey
  • ****
  • Posts: 433
  • Karma: +0/-0
  • "Best way out...is through" Courage Wolf
    • View Profile
Re: My 12 year old son interested in parkour...any advice on where to start?
« Reply #8 on: October 27, 2010, 01:23:42 PM »
It is a great discipline and an Art. If you have any questions feel free to ask us.  Steven Low has some great fitness and nutrition articles in the "general fitness" seciton. specific help on certain moves can be in the "movement" section. Great resources are all around this website. But how I started is I just went out and tried some of the moves. I started conditioning a few times a week. Then continue to train different moves. Sometimes I drill and improve on movements, sometimes I pracice flow. Atleast that is how I started training.  ;) Alot of valuable information has already been said so...

if we want a point in our lives we have to make it, if we want happiness then we have to do our best to get happy. you can be a mindless drone, or you can go out and do something great. -Texas Steve-/b]
working on Dive kong

Offline Dylan Antonsen

  • Mangabey
  • ****
  • Posts: 356
  • Karma: +4/-1
  • Have efficiency, will travel.
    • View Profile
Re: My 12 year old son interested in parkour...any advice on where to start?
« Reply #9 on: October 27, 2010, 08:40:33 PM »
OH, by the way, as said by second post up from me - KUDOS! Big time!
It's very rare to find open minded parents on ANYTHING, let alone something people usually see as dangerous even though it's not... like parkour...
Ten pushups, twenty crunches, twenty squats.
^My version of the ten pushups club.

Offline precisionrunner

  • Guenons
  • **
  • Posts: 77
  • Karma: +0/-0
    • View Profile
Re: My 12 year old son interested in parkour...any advice on where to start?
« Reply #10 on: October 27, 2010, 09:15:35 PM »
I would have to say start him at the playground. Sand or tanbark I find is really great for making mistakes on (maybe not so much tanbark). Start with just practicing getting over obstacles safely and have him get comfortable with getting over things quickly and efficiently. I wouldn't really recommend too much conditioning at his age. A healthy, consistent balance between arm core and leg work outs should be sufficient. But nothing too heavy because his muscles are still developing.

Also: baparkour.com has Basic Training every Sunday from 12 to 3. Giorgio, the basic training teacher taught my brother. He is absolutely great and really helpful. If your son is really into it, go try that out and get a little more technique and feedback.

Hope that helps!
 :)
Train Hard, Stay Humble.

Offline Ninjatic Silver

  • Mangabey
  • ****
  • Posts: 324
  • Karma: +3/-0
  • It's just my...BASS CANNON!!!
    • View Profile
    • My facebook
Re: My 12 year old son interested in parkour...any advice on where to start?
« Reply #11 on: October 27, 2010, 09:39:54 PM »
OH, by the way, as said by second post up from me - KUDOS! Big time!
It's very rare to find open minded parents on ANYTHING, let alone something people usually see as dangerous even though it's not... like parkour...
I'm open minded to everything except for closed minded people.

Offline Chantelle

  • Patas
  • ***
  • Posts: 111
  • Karma: +0/-0
    • View Profile
Re: My 12 year old son interested in parkour...any advice on where to start?
« Reply #12 on: October 27, 2010, 10:12:38 PM »
Put him in gymnastics.

Offline precisionrunner

  • Guenons
  • **
  • Posts: 77
  • Karma: +0/-0
    • View Profile
Re: My 12 year old son interested in parkour...any advice on where to start?
« Reply #13 on: October 27, 2010, 10:22:29 PM »
Put him in gymnastics.

mmmm its good but not necessary. If he's really serious about getting flexible and maybe even beginning tricking and stuff yes gymnastics but when your starting out, I wouldn't say it is necessary. 
Train Hard, Stay Humble.

Pyrobyte

  • Guest
Re: My 12 year old son interested in parkour...any advice on where to start?
« Reply #14 on: October 28, 2010, 04:07:20 AM »
Don't bother with conditioning at that age, in my opinion. The basics don't require much strength.

Just teach him/have someone teach him the basic techniques. (or let him figure it out on his own in a gym, vaulting onto a mattress, or vaulting your couch)

If you throw him into the military training program some traceurs make for themselves, he's sure to lose interest.

Offline Austin"Yoshi"

  • Mangabey
  • ****
  • Posts: 366
  • Karma: +0/-0
    • View Profile
Re: My 12 year old son interested in parkour...any advice on where to start?
« Reply #15 on: October 28, 2010, 04:51:47 AM »
mmmm its good but not necessary. If he's really serious about getting flexible and maybe even beginning tricking and stuff yes gymnastics but when your starting out, I wouldn't say it is necessary. 

maybe so but it has great benefits.

Offline Lil' K

  • Oryctolagus Cuniculus
  • *
  • Posts: 33
  • Karma: +0/-0
  • Do what you like, like what you do.
    • View Profile
Re: My 12 year old son interested in parkour...any advice on where to start?
« Reply #16 on: October 28, 2010, 07:50:12 AM »
Awesome a supportive parent!! start with going over the safety stuff landing and rolls.  from there i would take it slow as he learns. don't rush him and dont let him rush himself. best of luck =] have fun and be safe.
I'm not great at performing the movements of parkour, but I'm awesome at enjoying myself whilst I perform them to the best of my ability.

Offline Alec Furtado

  • kicks butt.
  • Hirundo Rustica
  • *****
  • Posts: 1992
  • Karma: +27/-6
  • Balance.
    • View Profile
Re: My 12 year old son interested in parkour...any advice on where to start?
« Reply #17 on: October 28, 2010, 09:21:44 AM »
Put him in gymnastics.
mmmm its good but not necessary. If he's really serious about getting flexible and maybe even beginning tricking and stuff yes gymnastics but when your starting out, I wouldn't say it is necessary. 
Not necessarily put him in gymnastics but I would recommend finding a local gymnastics gym with a good setup and reasonable open gym for his age. No doubt, it would be fun for you as well, assuming you could go out with him (in my experience gyms may have different open gyms for different age-groups... 8-17, 18+ at my gym. Sometimes parents just watch, sometimes, they have mild involvement, sometimes they have full involvement).
Water conforms to the shape of it's surroundings. Do not be water. Shape your own life.

Offline superdude88

  • is 13!!
  • Mangabey
  • ****
  • Posts: 324
  • Karma: +6976/-6987
  • kris vachet
    • View Profile
Re: My 12 year old son interested in parkour...any advice on where to start?
« Reply #18 on: January 21, 2011, 10:05:22 AM »
dude im only 11 and almost 12 april 25th will be 2 year annaversery of parkour
i started when i was 10 so hes not 2 young but even though hes old enuogh just start him slow

safty first
I'm Legend, 13, I'm Superdude

"No matter what you see in life see it as an obstacle see it as it can be over come."
-Me

Can't have a rainbow without rain

Offline Dan Elric

  • Ambassador
  • Hirundo Rustica
  • *****
  • Posts: 1586
  • Karma: +92/-53
    • View Profile
Re: My 12 year old son interested in parkour...any advice on where to start?
« Reply #19 on: January 21, 2011, 10:52:20 AM »
Ignore the rest of the fitness advice in this thread: http://www.eatmoveimprove.com

Also, this:

.... Pushups, situps, planks, and squats are not pylometrics, they are simply body weight exercises... which isn't bad, of course, body weight is great, but real pylometrics shouldn't be done until an athlete has sent some time lifting heavy. And, there is nothing wrong with, say a 12 year old, lifting weights safely. I'm not sure where the idea that lifting separates tendons from bone came from... Maybe if the kid was lifting enough weight to give him a hernia. There's nothing wrong with high-intensity work either, playing "tag" is high intensity. A 12 year old will simply have a different level from an adult of what separates high- from -low.

Besides that, moving around is great.

C, if you haven't already, check out the banner on the APK homepage that says "Your journey starts here." It's not an ad, but a series of small articles about parkour and getting started.

Take your child to the park and let him climb on the playground toys. I'm sure he has an idea of what he wants to do.

That said, I wouldn't let him jump off the top of the playground.... Or anything high for that matter; since that is not what parkour is all about. If he really wants to jump off high things, explain that there's a lot of work that the people in videos do to build up strength before taking drops safely.

Kudos to you for taking the time to learn about what your son wants to do, and wanting to help him! :)