Athleticism and other sporting activities are often related to height by the first assumption, and people who love sports have prejudice around the requirements of specific sporting disciplines they might be interested in. One of the main reasons people often give up before even trying is because of the myth that they are not tall enough, built properly, etc.
Parkour is an activity where young people can build up stamina. Also, children can be children because they are rolling around on the grass, climbing trees, and can feel rocks and sand under their feet. This sport, or rather discipline, is great for developing motoric and psychological skills. It includes running, jumping, climbing, and balancing the body and mind.
People that are misinformed can make wrong assumptions that the sport is only a dangerous exhibition, and nothing more. Parkour is not gymnastics, athletics, or a private sports school, but it also isn’t simply jumping over buildings. In layman’s terms, parkour can be described as the most natural form of children’s play. It enables unique traits of an individual and their capabilities, and it leads to mental and physical strength.
Contrary to popular opinion, research study results have shown parkour can have a positive effect on a young person’s growth. The combination of psychical exercise and a good intake of protein can enhance your growth to its maximum potential. Parkour can help teenagers develop muscles and stamina, while grown-ups can reap plenty of health benefits, but, unfortunately, cannot grow.
Table of Contents
Parkour at its core
Think twice, and jump once. Make an assessment, be realistic, and know your own capabilities. You can jump, maneuver, crawl, cross over, walk and reach your goal in your own and unique fashion.
Parents can learn by watching their children develop their skills and push the boundaries of their capabilities. Looking at a child that runs, gets dirty, falls, and raises up while raising their immunity and independence is a process for the entire family. All of those skills that children learn can be applied later in life. The development of hands, feet, body, and the brain is nothing but pure goodness and well-being.
Parkour does not have any rushed, or sudden, unplanned movements. Through it, you will learn caution, while proper parkour trainers are educated people that tell their students to stop, assess, and then act.
This sport teaches equality
With an entire philosophy of being realistic and aware, humbleness is a consequential trait all of us need to learn. Through parkour training, people realize that there are no necessary conditions for training or any additional props. You can even do parkour if you’re wearing glasses.
A good pair of sneakers and goodwill is everything you need. Every child can create their own training field and adjust it to their mood and capabilities. Some will try to jump two stairs, then go to a post, launch, and land on a bench. Someone else with more experience will attempt more challenging acrobatics to achieve their self-paced goal, and express the skillset of their body.
Another great thing coming from parkour is that it is an individual group sport. There is no competition (other than competing with yourself), no limitations or records. Success is achieved once you manage to do something you didn’t do yesterday – simple as that.
This allows people and young individuals to learn responsibility for their actions, question their capabilities, and push boundaries further. The dedication and decision of whether or not they are able to pass through two polls, jump over or simply go around, leave the freedom of choice intact. The obstacles are there to engage and realize their place in the world (both literally and metaphorically).
It takes baby steps to begin, and once those steps are perfected, you are able to move on to more complex and challenging activities. Until you are ready to do a high parkour jump over rooftops, it takes quite a few years of practice, so it is not something to be taken too likely.
Does parkour stunt your growth?
Pay attention to gymnasts, weight lifters, and even parkours that have been in their respective fields for years. You can notice that they are quite short. In the past trainers would have told you that a lot of heavy impacts and defining sports will stunt the growth and overall development of your body. Although no research was done for parkour specifically, research on elite gymnast activity does provide significant insight into the matter. The results of these studies provided no data on a specific correlation between gymnastic activity, heavy impact, and stunt growth.
Debunking is something we have all witnessed is that shorter people are more into heavy impact sports. The reason why is simply because it is easier for them. Their physiognomy has shorter limbs, which means less leverage to do certain strength moves. It is also easier for them to do flips because their center of gravity is a little bit lower.
Taller people have ‘lower’ results
Taller people simply cannot keep up, which is why, when their results are compared, shorter people are more efficient in any of these disciplines. Finally, the only thing experts did notice is that there is a potential delay for taller people to grow due to heavy impact physical activity. Once your body is fueled, and you take a break from your physical activity, the natural process of evolution will allow the body to compensate for the growth back, almost overnight. Our bodies are well-oiled machines, and it would take much more impact to stop a growing body reach its full form (potential is something slightly different).
The only thing that can stunt growth, and overall immunity, and body development from a young age, is malnutrition and an unhealthy lifestyle. So for those looking out for a new sport their children (or themselves) can practice, parkour has great benefits, especially if it’s combined with a good diet and healthy habits.
Benefits of a parkour workout
Contrary to the general and uneducated opinion, heavy impact training results have shown that parkour helps with growth and overall development. Especially with younger bodies, where intense training builds up bone density and resilience.
Children and teens that are still developing will naturally grow in all ways. There are some things people who want to begin parkour need to consider.
Here are the ‘essentials’ or what does parkour require from your body:
- A good respiratory system
- Strong arms
- Strong legs
- Narrow stomach
Now, if you have zero stamina, it is ok, in parkour culture you learn how to build up all of these things, and so much more. Be prepared to learn how to jump, descend, overcome obstacles, etc. All of these techniques need to be perfected to ideal conditions, making them almost seem automatic.
Learning in a group, or with an educated trainer will prevent many accidents that are only waiting to happen. You need to learn how to fall, and do all of those amazing tricks (like how to roll) in an enclosed environment with a professional watching you at all times. Many experienced parkour trainers might even have gyms or are holding training in the open for different seniority levels and age groups. The boys of 12,14,18 and 22 have a different structure, mindset, and approach to exercise. It takes a lot of knowledge to coordinate everything but it is not impossible.
In reality, does parkour make you taller?
Increasing height is a genetic trait first and foremost, but boys and girls in development will increase in height. After 18, or after the body slows down, growing an inch is possible, but it’s not really growth per se. The catch is to remove the decompressions on the vertebrae that develop over time due to gravity and poor posture habits.
The height of the human body has been influenced by several factors such as environment, hormones, genes, and nutrition. The synergy of exercise and a good intake of protein can enhance your growth to its maximum potential. Learning about nutrition, and changing your daily habits to be healthier can only do you good. The potential growth will not be dramatic, but it may boost your self-confidence (just like taking up skateboarding in your teens).
Parkour demands that the tracer become extremely active. Active movement can lead to an increase in stamina, benefiting the cardiovascular system, and increasing oxygen in the body. The fitness aspect of the sport is manifested through skills like agility, balance, strength, speed, coordination, and reaction. All of these skills are used on a daily basis during a good parkour workout. They will ensure your condition and will help with bending, spinning, and transferring energy and strength through the entire body.
Like many other sports, parkour can help build up bone density. It makes movements of the upper and lower extremities more resilient, making healthy and strong bones. A word of advice: parkour is an active sport and accidents can happen. Make sure you know how to fall, and choose where to train as it can cause some serious injuries if you are not careful.