Work out like a Hollywood body double

When is the last time you did a cartwheel or back-rolled over a barrier or leaped across blocks?

Get in shape by working out like a Hollywood stunt double. Parkour, a new workout phenomenon takes you out of the gym and into a playground of your creation, teaching you the skills to keep moving forward in spite of obstacles.

A combination of gymnastics, free running, jumping and climbing, combined with critical thinking skills get the body going – strengthening your core as well as your mind. took on the challenge.

"What I love about Parkour is that it's really a freedom of expression. You can really express your own type of style, through movement and creativity," said Basilio Montilla, a Parkour instructor at Chelsea Piers Fitness Center in New York City.

The class begins with a warm-up, conditioning and core strength work, followed by learning the fundamental movements of Parkour (vaults, precisions, strides, rolls and more). The stealth workout ends with a complete Parkour obstacle course.

Ting, a Parkour class participant described the class as giving him the feeling of a super star. "[Parkour] is better than the typical day at the gym just jogging on a treadmill. I'd rather be jumping over things, living like a rock star," he said. 

Parkour first become popular as an outdoor activity— running around buildings, leaping from walls, and rolling across streets. The mentality is why run laps around a track when you can race through your town acting like a super hero?

Montilla said that most people apply what they've learned in the class and take it to the streets.

"It's a whole different mentality, it's a whole different challenge," he added.

The more advances traceurs, the name given to Parkour practitioners, make flips and tricks look easy.

But don't let this scare you away from giving it a shot.
"It's a sport where you can grow to many levels, unlimited," Ting said.

"You are perfectly fine if you are not a gymnast. Anybody can pick up Parkour," Montilla added.

There are dozens of videos on the web demonstrating this phenomenon. Ting and Montilla said that is where they first found their inspiration to get involved.

"I saw this stuff on YouTube, of people outside jumping over bars, and I thought it was awesome," Ting says.  

He said he was originally into break dancing and Mixed Martial Arts (MMA) so, "it was natural for me to get into something new and crazy."

Basilio said he got into it a couple of years ago after seeing a commercial with Parkour influences. "I did my research, and I taught myself."

So will you take the challenge?

Check to see if your gym or community has a Parkour group or click here to learn more about Chelsea Piers Fitness Center Parkour classes