Confidence and Liberation 

This is the fourth or fifth blog I’ve started.  Some have been public, some private.  They’ve all slowly died away because I never felt confident in my writing or the story I had to tell.  I have also have this quasi-narcissistic fear of having my thoughts read after I’ve died.

When Sharing ideas, I often find myself misunderstood.  It can be very frustrating because I very seldom come to conclusions on my own, but work through my ideas most effectively through conversation.  At the same time, I don’t like to cause controversy or foster division, and I’m ultimately a people pleaser.   More often than not, I find myself silent in conversations about topics I’m passionate about.

About a year ago I stumbled across parkour and freerunning via the Red Bull mini series “Free My Way”. I was blown away by what the athletes were able to do.  I’ve never been a sports fan.  The competition, arrogance, and downright bloodlust I’ve seen in major sports athletes and fans alongside of the arbitrary rivalry made me steer clear of sports for most of my life, but I’ve seen something different in parkour and freerunning.

I have watched dozens of videos, seen hundreds of social media posts, and even watched a few competitions.  All the while I have seen remarkable comraderie and humility from the community.  Sure, there are debates over the distinction between freerunning and parkour, but there seems to be a general air of respect across the spectrum.  Feerunning and parkour are ultimately individual sports that test the limits of body and mind.

One of the best examples that comes to mind is Alfred Scott’s finals run in the Red Bull Art of Motion 2015.  He tried to pull a trick he had never done in competition and missed it.  Rather than try and regroup and get more points he went back, pulled the trick, and ended his run.  It ended up winning him a best trick award, but it was the personal challenge that drove him (You can see the run here).  

I’ve had a lot of mental and emotional struggles over the last few years.  My Christian faith has kept me grounded, but it’s been an uphill battle.  Watching parkour has lit a fire in me to see what I’m capable of, and I’ve started the conditioning to practice it myself.  More than anything else in these first stages, I’ve realized the weight of the mental blocks I’ve buried myself in.  Deciding to have the confidence to do parkour has given me the confidence to be a better dad and husband.   The only word I can use to describe that is liberation.

Thank God for parkour.