Winter is approaching as many of you know. The air has become brisker and the temperature slowly begins to decline. While we are still a fair ways away from it, it might be good to think in advance about how you will work on your parkour progression in the upcoming months.

Winter is a tough time for training; for most people, training outside is not much of an option if you live in an area prone to ice or snow. There are persistent few who wish to continue their training outside during winter, and I applaud them. To train in winter shows some great determination and requires more mental effort and alertness than regular summer or spring training.

If you choose to train outside, there are a couple things to keep in mind. Mental alertness and determination as previously stated is essential. With more difficult terrain and more dangerous circumstances, a traceur must be constantly on the lookout; area checks (which you always do anyhow, right?) and precaution are required to keep from careless injury from ice and other obstacles that come with the wrath of winter. Determination is required because of the increased strain, both physically and mentally. The way you dress will affect your movement (look HERE for some more information) and the rate of exhaustion during your training; burdensome boots and restricting jackets make it difficult to maneuver and cause easy exhaustion. This increased rate of tiring makes it hard for you to want to continue, but you must do so in order to progress; that is why winter is hard on you, but it is worth it.

For those of you who are more careful or unsure of their ability and choose not to train outside for any number of valid reasons, also need to keep a few things in the forefront of their mind. It is easy to forget about training, and it is easy to slowly seep away from regular activity in winter, and it is hard to keep a regular training and conditioning schedule; I know it just as well as you. While you will not be able to work on your technique as much due to the restrictions of winter, you will work more on conditioning and toning your body. Physical fitness is one of the three keys to aid progression in parkour; without it you will not advance beyond smoothing out a technique. During these dreary months, work on some calisthenics and plyometrics but don’t just do them for the sake of doing them, do them until you know you have accomplished something. You may stay in shape and that is fine and well, but in order to move forwards you have to push yourself. It will hurt and be hard, I will not butter it up for you but if what you want is to progress and have better ability come parkour season that is what I suggest.

Regardless of your choice, remember to train safely. Do not train until it hurts, I meant merely that it may hurt (mentally and physically); training should not cause injury if done right. Be wary of your surroundings and what you are doing, train safe, and try to have fun.

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