Free Running vs. Parkour

The opening scene in the new James Bond movie, Casino Royale, reminded me of a video clip of a kid scaling buildings and doing diving flips off them then immediately getting back up to run off in search of more obstacles. It turns out there are a couple of terms describing this activity. They started out as synonymous, but have parted ways based on intent.

  • Free running uses acrobatic moves to respond with buildings and their environment in an emphasis on asthetics and athletics.
  • Parkour is more about being able to quickly escape and evade pursuers using free running techniques to access the inaccessible.

Bond is obviously interested in parkour, but jump over the first two minutes of this clip to get a taste of free running: