Enlisting in the military? Here’s some parkour moves to help you prepare.
It’s no coincidence that the creator of parkour, Georges Hebert, also began the obstacle course training method for military initiates. That’s because parkour teaches many of the same skills that you’ll need to overcome obstacles during military service – plus mental toughness.
The battlefield has greatly transformed over the years, from open fields and trenches to densely-populated urban cityscapes. The concrete jungle will prove no match for you with a few parkour-related exercises under your sleeve.
If you get a chance, be sure to watch the video below with actor Taylor Lautner from the movie Tracers (2015). That film is all about Parkour and will give you an idea of what’s possible with these moves.
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Military basic training teaches a number of climbing techniques. If you want to get prepared for the armed services, but you have a limited amount of time and/or money, try some basic rope climbing drills.
You can climb up a length of rope using both your arms and your legs, pinching the rope between your thighs to relieve the strain on your muscles.
Another climbing technique popularized by the Army involves wrapping a length of rope around the leg. Your foot acts as a clamp allowing you to ratchet your way up the rope.
Parkour teaches you how to vault over barriers with speed and fluidity. The key purpose of the various parkour vaults is to maintain momentum while running. The two-handed gate vault, for example, is used by police officers to chase down suspects.
The reverse vault can be used to clear an obstacle with one hand so you can keep your weapon ready.
The lazy vault allows you to use three points of contact to get over unsteady barriers. These vaulting techniques were translated into a military form by French serviceman, Georges Hebert. His vaulting methods are the same ones that you’ll learn from military drill instructors during basic training.
Jumping is a practical exercise that you can do just about anywhere, even in a small dorm room or apartment. Precision jumping is a parkour technique in which you leap from one stationary position to another. There are plenty of opportunities in your daily routine to condition your body with precision jumping.
You can practice this drill by leaping from parking space to parking space or jumping across a guard rail to a curbside. Standing long jumps and jumping down from a higher elevation will also simulate the training situations you’ll face in the Army.
Quadrupedal movement is a way you can engage nearly every muscle of the body while being on the go. You simply mimic the locomotion of four-legged animals, particularly cats. These feline creatures have impeccable balance and fluidity of motion.
In the military, you’ll have to carry nearly fifty pounds of gear and equipment.
Strengthening the core muscles of your lower back, thighs and abdomen with quadrupedal movement will give you a head start on boot camp. The quadrupedal gallop might seem awkward at first, but once you master the technique, you’ll gain strength and coordination.
There is no shortcut or easy way around basic training. It’s designed to be challenging. However, parkour-related exercises will condition your body for many of the same obstacles you’ll face in military basic training. Don’t wait until Day One; start training today.