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  Finally we have found a place to safely practice some advanced techniques.  ASAP (Artistic Sports Academy Plus) www.artisticsportsacademyplus.com hosts an “open gym” every Sunday from 3:30-5:00pm.  Cost is $10, and staff is on hand to help with anything you might need.  I have to say, and I’m not alone in this, but I was very pleasantly surprised with how our group was received.  I wasn’t sure how a gymnastics gym would react to a bunch of older guys with no real gymnastics training coming in and going crazy.  Not only were we made to feel welcome, but by the end of it all, we had the owner Barry, vaulting over a 10′ high block into the foam pit.  IMO it was some of the most fun I’ve had in a long time.  We’ve decided, at least for the time being to go for open gym every other Sunday.  So our next trip there would be on July 26th.  Every member of Darkburg is highly encouraged to go.  

Aside from the members of the group Darkburg, I encourage anyone reading this to go.  If I could, I would go every Sunday.  The staff and facility are second to none, and I can guarantee that if you have kids, they will love it there.  So go, check out their website, and then go check out the gym.  And we’ll see you all on Sunday.

in my attempts to recruit more people to parkour and in particular our club i have found that the biggest obstacles are peoples fears and self imposed limits. ” i have an injury” ” i’m not that physical or athletic” ” that stuff is too dangerous”.  recognizing limits and excuses are not the same thing. realizing an injury and the restraint in activity needed to heal or prevent further damage is a skill in its self.  a balance between patience and desire must be struck. this is the basis for safety and development when practicing most any activity. if you join us for a work out and spend the time trying to impress or keep up you will not come back a second time. if you spend your time with us listening, watching and doing what you can within your limits safely, you will realize ways to work around injuries, ways to build skill, and that it’s only as dangerous as you allow it to be. since we here at darkburg have a no competition mentality we will not be judging your performance in comparison to anyone else’s. we also for the sake of safety insist that you respect your capacity. you’ll find these to be principles of “good” martial art and yoga schools.

if you are truly interested you’ll work through your limits. it’s those of you who write it off before even allowing yourself to entertain the idea of being a doer as opposed to a watcher or talker. the only thing that is really stopping you is you. give it some real thought and if you decide you’re just not into it then let it be cause you’r not and not because you “can’t”. while in life sometimes “just can’t” is why. but be honest that’s usually due to circumstances beyond your control. like serious injury or handicap or imprisonment or death.  so your choices are really only, i’m  just not interested or i’m a paraplegic prisoner of a foreign dictator or dead. and of course the final choice is joining us and begin a journey that can only improve life…… the decsion is all yours……

Quiggz shot and edited this great video featuring Gabe Streisfeld called “A Day in Philly.”  We at Darkburg feel this is an exceptional video demonstrating not only some really good flow, but also showing parkour in a more realistic light. (There are no flips or roof to roof jumps, etc.)  So here is the link for any and all to enjoy: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=5lNU2zRJBuQ

After seeing the above mentioned video, The Philadelphia Inquirer decided to do a story on Philly parkour.  They interviewed Gabe as well as Ty Soehngen, both recent high-school graduates and pillars of the Philly parkour community.  Here is the link to that article online: http://www.philly.com/inquirer/local/20090616_Parkour_gaining_popularity_in_Phila_.html

It’s only a matter of time before Harrisburg gets some exposure, so let’s keep practicing and be ready to represent.

 as we use the blog to communicate with the public we will no longer discuss outing news on the blog. that info will be reserved for our facebook site which is open only to members. on the blog we will share info we feel best reflects the club and its philosophies. this is both to limit how much work on the computer n8 and todd have to do and will allow the blog to be primarily a resource for the curious and or new comers that we hope to lure into joining the club. the club is free and only requires attendance to at least 2 outings a month. if interested in checking us out e mail us at darkburg@gmail.com.

we as a club have been doing our best to send people to places on the web were they can see parkour in action. with the use of this blog we hope to provide an easier way of doing this.

let me see if i can make some sense of it for you visitors seeking clarity. first off parkour is a slang term from french that correctly is spelled parcours. parcours means obstacle course. in the late 80’s some french fellows developed a group of techniques for a game they liked to play they called parkour. or obstacle course. this was in reflection of their environment and the influence of the natural method. the natural method is a work out philosophy designed by george hebert circa 1902 to help the french military.  this work out encompasses all facets of human movement. you can still find the natural method being practiced today. i suggest googling it or looking on you tube for it. the philosophies of the natural method and parkour are very similar. the main idea is that “to be useful one most be strong”. but not just physically also mentally. the skills developed by the practice of parkour lead to a better understanding of the body and what it’s capable of. that leads to more confidence  as well as being healthier, stronger, faster and more aware of space and the options we have in  that space should the need for options arise.

if you are  interested in yoga or martial arts as compared to going to the gym or playing a main stream sport then i would bet you prefer activities that are life style oriented as opposed to competition based. parkour is exactly that. a life style based art of movement which if practiced mindfully like yoga or martial arts can begin to open spiritual pathways. i find a combination of the three to be the way to go. using yoga as a base for physical development and maintenance, kung fu (in my case) as a way to develop my naturally acquired weapons or defense capabilities and parkour as a way for me to read and understand the best possible path for flight or escape. never mind the fact that any one of these arts develops extreme physical prowess the combination will lead one to being the most complete human animal. adding meditation which is part of yoga and martial arts and  in my opinion will find its way into parkour to ones training is what builds the spiritual bridge to the application of these arts in life. meditation is also the best way to develop control of breath, heart rate and emotional reaction to any situation or scenario. hence the idea that these are life style arts as opposed to something done over lunch break  or in the months leading up to bikini weather. if you want to loose weight, get or stay fit, find deeper purpose, fill spiritual or emotional voids or just be the best you, you can be, any one or combination of these arts will help to pave the way.

i hope this helps to clarify what parkour is for us here at darkburg. and remember anyone can do this if you don’t check it out you’ll never know you can. there is no competition there is no judgement. only personal development and communal sharing. find your inner spirit and let it out.

percision practice. bar to bar over the top bar..

precision practice. bar to bar over the top bar..

balance training

balance training

finally some pics.

welcome pierre to darkburg…. we look forward to your involvement. pierre and i (n8) started exploring the parkour world together about 2 years ago. while he’s been m.i.a. for the last year or so i’m eager for his return and his participation in the club. with travis away for the summer i was a little worried about our ranks thinning. pierre joining squelches those worries. we can only grow my friends. see y’all out there……

as the founders of “darkburg”, a tracuer club…..  todd and n8 would like to welcome those of you who have commented on the web site it is nice to see some interest. we encourage anyone to post a comment as well as joining us on our parkour quest. or at  least come see what we’re all about. working out with us is free, joining the club is free. if you feel that you have some limitation please understand that this practice has no competition. you only have to work at your own level. we will gladly coach and help in learning technique as well as one of the hardest things to do, see the path. by this i mean were to apply technique. there are all sorts of fun little things to do that once mastered will open the door to the next level. the only way to find out any of this is to do. we’ve got some good water here, you have to choose to drink it…………. so please feel free to visit, post comments, or even join us.

more pain for n8….. my shoulder is steadily getting better. however i’ve added to the list a bruised palm, and a puncture on my shin. the palm is already on its way to healing. the puncture doesn’t hurt unless i bump it but it’s ugly…… i’ll be fine sooner than later, still i’m going to concede to rational thought and back off on my zeal when we’re running.  i was rushing when i hurt myself and that is not good. moving fast and rushing are not the same. sometimes just because we feel strong enough doesn’t mean we’re ready. balance training, strength training, drills on everything, technique review, and of course patience. even with all the training when in the doing of a maneuver building upon it’s size height, width,length etc. is nesscary to achieveing success. going for it is a must, but should be tempered with a keen awareness of all points of our capacity. not knowing of even the most arbitrary weakness could lead to disaster. BALANCE IS A MUST. balance of mind, body, and ego. respect your capacity.

as always we continue our rotation. this outing will be more about flow and the actual parkour. as there is a difference between training or practice and the doing of parkour. this is also a good time to work on endurance. hope to see everyone out especially the newer guys Todd is finding via a.p.k. and other Internet sources.  it’s important for the club to grow. growth will lead to more members and the potential to meet find or even turn out some real talent. the more talented one of us is the better we all will get. motivation to train and to be as strong as we can ,can be exacerbated by a friend and partners ability and drive.

i also wanted to make mention of you tube and being friends on it.  todd and i are and share videos we find. this helps us communicate some of what we’re looking for to each other. it also helps to explain to each other what we mean about the execution of certain techniques. in other words join youtube and become friends with todd and i. (club members only please.)