Safety Part 1 – Is parkour safe?

Safety Part 1 – Is parkour safe?

We’re running a series of posts on the safety of parkour. This is Part 1 to begin the series.

Recently our Managing Director¬†Damien Puddle was on the Radio New Zealand Afternoon Show with Jim Mora talking about ACC and injury in parkour. Take a listen…

While the interview was relatively short, we thought we could expand on the issues bought up. So our upcoming series will cover the topic of safety in parkour and explore issues related to that.

There is very little research on the injury rate of parkour. A due to be published paper in a German Sports Injury journal titled ‘Parkour – “Art of Movement” and its Injury Risk’ [1] states that on average the injury rate in parkour is 5.5 per 1000 hours of training. Compare this to more thoroughly documented activities such as Gymnastics training in the US which averages 0.44, Rugby training in the UK which averages 19.2, and Soccer training which averages 62 [2]. Of note is that the “Art of Movement” paper takes into account skin abrasions (accounting for 70.3 % of the documented injuries), which would greatly inflate their reported rate. I would also argue they’re a minor injury. For an activity that is trained on urban surfaces not designed for sporting use such as rough concrete, this type of injury is very common. Other activities usually have specific playing fields and custom designed gear. The beauty of parkour is that it doesn’t require any of this gear; it’s entry barrier from needing special equipment is zero. However there are various safety issues that come from this.

So let’s explore safety in parkour further.

Let us know your thoughts, or an issue you’d like to see covered. We want to make sure your questions get answered. Is parkour safe? Or is its practice a cause for concern?

Check out the rest of our series examining the safety of parkour:

    1. Is Parkour Safe?
    2. Risk


1 – Wanke, E. M., Thiel, N., Groneberg, D. A., & Fischer, A. (2013). Parkour – “Art of Movement” and its Injury Risk. Sportverletzung Sportschaden: Organ der Gesellschaft fur Orthopadisch-Traumatologische Sportmedizin.
2 – Hamill, B.P. (1994). Relative Safety of Weightlifting and Weight Training. Journal of Strength Conditioning Research, 8(1), 53-57.


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