It’s been an amazing Summer at PKV, and we’re going strong into the Fall with a ton of cool projects as we expand access and reach beyond the gym.
We’re running after-school programs at two middle schools in partnership with the YMCA to help bring parkour to kids who otherwise wouldn’t be able to afford instruction. Our coaches are showing kids new ways to play in the environments around their schools.
Speaking of environments, in September we partnered local builders and designers to build and install a parkour play environment at the Seattle Design Festival downtown. We built a structure that would be fun and challenging for all participants, then spent two days playing on it with kids and adults of all ages and backgrounds. Right now, we’re in talks with the City of Seattle to see about installing the structure permanently in a public place so that more people can play!
Meanwhile, back at the gym, we came up with a new obstacle event format based on challenge and progression and tested it out at the 2014 Parkour Visions Classic. Check out the video online here, and see first-hand the stuff you’ve helped us build.
We’re also expanding our reach to “non-typical” populations with parkour by expanding our Women’s class schedule and our Low Impact Parkour class schedule.
As always, we’re grateful for your current and continued generosity -- we remember it every time we walk through the gym and see what you’ve helped build. If you haven’t stopped by to visit, do it soon!
Thanks again, and keep training,
Summer's been full of action at Parkour Visions! Nearly every week since late June, we've been running parkour summer camps from 8am-3pm, reaching new groups of kids and reconnecting with kids we only see during the summer. Kids come in sore and happy on day two, and by day five, they've got a great grounding in parkour fundamentals. I've even heard reports that kids have been known to have ridiculous amounts of fun, too.
In order to get more of our adult students training outside, we launched a unique summer-long outdoor class membership and are running 3 classes per week at various parks throughout Seattle. The classes have helped people learn how to find challenges appropriate for their level, how to see their environment in a new way, and how to challenge themselves mentally and physically as they overcome obstacles out in the real world.
Speaking of the real world, we're working on some secret and not-so-secret parks projects. The one we can talk about will be an installation at the Seattle Design Festival running in early September. If you're in Seattle, come by and play with us! The ones we can't talk about now, we'll talk about later :)
Our big summer event, the Parkour Visions Classic, brought parkour practitioners from all over the US and Canada to Seattle for 3 days of parkour training. This year, instead of focusing the event on a big speed competition, we opted for a more community and games flavor. On the first night of the Classic, we ran a parkour challenge event (check out the video!) that got people testing their skills against some creative obstacles in the gym. The second day found over 100 people playing an epic game of Assault at Freeway Park, then going to Volunteer Park to train and chill and learn capoeira in the trees. We took it easy on day 3, with training and a barbecue at Gasworks Park. It was a great time!
We've got a month of summer left, and as we wrap up our parkour camps and outdoor classes, we're looking forward to the school year, when we'll relaunch our parkour after-school programs to reach a whole new set of kids with parkour, as well as a whole new set of projects.
As always, we thank all of our donors and supporters for helping us advance our world-class parkour teaching program, build equipment to help our students advance, and share good information with the public and with the parkour community. We couldn't do it without you.
The days have been getting longer and warmer here in Seattle, and we've started opening up our bay doors again so our students can soak up some sun as they sprint past.
Our programs have grown so much that we've finally had to open up on Fridays to accomadate all the kids. Some of our parents have been asking for this for years so we're excited to finally be able to say yes!
After months of waiting, the Airtrick we'd been saving for nearly half a year finally arrived. Essentially a giant, bouncy air-mattress custom made in the Netherlands, the Airtrick is enormously fun for kids and adults and is definitely our favorite new toy. If you're in Seattle, its definitely worth a trip to PKV to jump on the Airtrick.
With the Airtrick, we've been able to expand our freerunning program to reach both kids and adults at beginner and intermediate levels. We're glad to finally have the capacity to teach the more acrobatic elements of parkour in a safe and approachable way.
We've also been busy in the workshop building more obstacles and coming up with new ways to secure them. Lately we have expanded our scaffolding set up by anchoring it into the wall, created an adjustable high-bar, and built a new floor-anchored box that we call the Monolith. Using the new bar mounts from the cage, the Monolith will allow us to closely integrate scaffolding and climbing elements with the existing wooded shapes of the Freeway area.
We're so grateful to everyone who's supported us and allowed us to experiment with different programs and obstacles. Thank you, and we'll see you at the gym!