Learn Parkour Without Classes – The Wall Run
The parkour wall run is a basic parkour move in which a person runs up a wall without support. This parkour lesson is for beginners that are new to parkour training, and trying to teach themselves how to become a traceur (someone who does parkour) without paying for expensive parkour classes.
The simplest description of this parkour move is as follows: you jog/run towards a wall, then make contact with the wall with your strong foot at about your standing waist height, and propel yourself up the wall.
The first lesson they’ll teach at any parkour class is to make sure you hit the wall at your standing waist height. Lower than this will give you poor leverage and make you slip, but higher than this will make it difficult to push off the wall.
The second big tip they teach at parkour classes is to make contact only with the ball of your foot. Many beginners make the mistake of putting their whole foot against the wall because they think it will give them better friction, but really it limits the amount of force you can generate with that leg. Your heel should not touch the wall.
It’s actually unfortunate that this is called a wall run because the name screws a lot of people up. You are not running on the wall. You are bouncing off and shooting up. It is not the same feeling or technique as running on the ground. This is probably the biggest lesson for parkour beginners: launch off of the wall, don’t try to run up it. You want to be generating force into the wall, not downward.
Another important parkour lesson: ALWAYS keep your hands ready in the front of your body in case you slip on the wall and need to catch yourself.
Advanced parkour lesson:
Once you get good at generating force into the wall and using it to bounce outward & upward, there’s another tip that some parkour classes will teach to generate extra height beyond the initial contact. Forcefully lift your opposite knee up in the direction you want to go. This will generate momentum and raise your center of gravity. This is a small trick but it produces big results. Thrust your leg up, tight to your body (keeping your hands ready so you don’t bang the wall after initial contact). If done right this technique can generate some serious height so keep in mind the importance of learning to do a parkour landing BEFORE trying the wall run.
The last part of a successful wall run is the wall up. A wall up is the move used to go from hanging on the wall to scaling it. This technique is a parkour lesson of its own. It requires upper body strength, forearm strength, and most importantly, good parkour technique.
Remember, like any sport, parkour has some inherent risk. It’s important to stay within your current skill level.