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So a friend of mine offered to teach me free running, and my first thought was, 'Why on earth is he asking me this?!' But instead of saying 'no thanks' like I had intended, my mouth betrayed me with the words, 'Sure, I would really like that!'
We haven't started yet, (we will in a couple days) but I'm apprehensive, to say the least.
I'm a pretty outdoorsy person, like hiking and camping, but I'm not particularly active/athletic, so I feel like this is going to hinder my abilities to do the required flips and the like.
Also, my friend asked me, 'Can you do a front flip?' In the back of my mind I was like, "Psh! What are you talking about? People don't do those in real life' and 'I can do a somersault...? sweatdrop '
Now I'm just rambling, so to get to the point, can anyone give me any helpful tips? Like:
What clothes and shoes should I wear?
How can I overcome my fear of embarrassing myself when I don't do something right?(I find it weirdly amusing that I'm more afraid of embarrassing myself then getting hurt.)
Is there anything I can do to physically prepare myself in such a short before I start learning?
Any advice would be very welcome!

In regards to clothing, depending on whether you like wearing tights or loose clothing, I'd say go with sweatpants/track pants. Remember, you want to be able to move with ease. Restrictive clothing is gonna hinder your range of motion.

Shoes are another issue since the shoes I wear for training have been considered under parkour influence. Footwear with a sole that isn't too thick is generally the way I would go, one without the plastic part in the middle between the heel and toes (mainly because it's bad for balancing on rails). Stuff like Kalenji's or Volleys should fit the bill (though volleys have a soft and thin sole) but runners are fine starting off.

I hope your friend is teaching you in a sandbox, gymnasium or somewhere with matted floors and/or foam pit - it just helps with the whole mental thing. It's hard to perform when you're worried about landing on your neck against concrete.

Just remember, if you're going to jump - commit to it. Bailing when performing somersaults is pretty dangerous especially if you're midway in the air (from experience lol). A front flip is pretty straight forward and less mentally taxing since you'll be on contact with the floor for the majority of the movement (hands to feet), but a somersault requires your whole body spinning 360 in the air for the whole movement.

When it comes to physical preparation, it always helps to test your vertical height since a fair bit of free-running requires enough height to clear a set of movements. I'm going to assume you're not gonna have a month to prepare but do a few explosive exercises. Improving power obviously takes time, but it's good to see where you're at. Don't forget to warm-up before doing anything as well.

Its all good fun though. Hope you keep at it after your lesson, and enjoy yourself. I feel like I wasn't specific enough when answering this so feel free to ask more questions.
Volant Traceur

This was all very helpful, so thank very much!!!
My first 'training session' went about as well as I expected (and it wasn't somewhere soft, just his back yard). I know absolutely zip about any of the moves I have to learn, so I'm starting out with the basics: a front hand spring.
Sadly, I'm not even anywhere near that, so I'm doing hand stands and round offs(to get into the right mental state of getting my body to do what I want and getting over my hesitation)
Even though I can't do any of the really cool stuff yet, and I know it's going to take my a good while to learn, I'm really excited and this is definitely something I'm going to stick with!!
Thanks again for your advice! It is much appreciated!!!!!

That's great! Round-offs are probably the best way to chain in a back somersault, I'm glad you're liking it. Keep up the good work! And don't worry about the time it takes to learn, people learn at different rates and I'm personally more comfortable with "power" movements than "linking" ones (my handsprings are a little unclean).
I have read this thread and thought about the risk assessments that are to be looked at "free running/parkour" shouldn't be overlooked into thinking its all about flips.

What with the combinations of flips spins and kicks thrown into movement specifies it more of an art than a show. Don't train for others just for yourself.

I have been training for a long time and highly suggest that the movements of running is to be taught first and the performance comes later.

There are so many moves that should be shown before the front summersoult eg: kong, dash, arm jumps etc. please consider the basics befor throwing into the performance skills.
soundz funn??

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