The Efficiency Principle is a new training principle created by MisterParkour.com. It seeks to correct and replace the erroneous ideas put forward by the efficiency paradox in an effort to aid Tracers across the world in implementing proper training methods in their own progressions.
Parkour is a utility art based on overcoming obstacles quickly and efficiently. Much of the Parkour community has found it amusing that to become better at this you have to train “inefficient movements.” (a misconception in and of itself which we will address shortly.) This enthusiasm has recently led to the coining of the phrase the “efficiency paradox” defined as training inefficient movements to promote efficiency. Unfortunately the “efficiency paradox” is a physiologically misguiding principle, and it should be permanently discarded from Parkour terminology in favor of the physiological accurate training concept known as the Efficiency Principle.
To say that Tracers train inefficient movements to promote efficiency is physiologically inaccurate (we will explain this momentarily). However, because of the linguistic novelty of the purpose of Parkour (namely, efficiently overcoming obstacles) and many common methods of training which do not encompass this type of movement, it is logical to see how some could erroneously and inadvertently support the Efficiency Paradox. Nevertheless, this concept has no credence once one understands two basic, foundational training principles that blatantly contradict the Efficiency Paradox. These concepts are What is Training? and Training vs. Performance. Analyzing these two training concepts proves the Efficiency Paradox inaccurate and also simultaneously provides the basis to found the Efficiency Principle.
The concept of true and proper training discredits the Efficiency Paradox because it contradicts the definition of the Efficiency Paradox. Contrary to the definition, correct training always reinforces efficiency of movement to the point that saying one is training “inefficient movement” is kind of like saying the color blue smells like roses. Neither statement makes any sense. Of course the rebuttal is that one could “move faster” or “move more efficiently”, but one must realize that efficiency in movement has absolutely nothing to do with speed, and efficiency in training has nothing to do with performance value. Efficiency has to do with optimizing output and minimizing waste given a certain input. Suffice to say that just because someone is not running as fast as he/she can does not mean that he/she is not moving efficiently or training efficiency.
The definition of the Efficiency Paradox not only puts forth physiological misguiding training principles by erroneously telling people to train inefficient movement (something that can not be done in proper training), the term also erroneously unites the two independent concepts ideas of Training and Performance. In opposition to the Efficiency Paradox the concepts of Training and Performance are two distinctly different actions. We do not perform so that we can perform better, and training is not a part of performance. Rather we train (concept 1) so that we can improve our performance (concept 2). The Efficiency Paradox however, erroneously assimilates and unites these two ideas. By explaining that we train inefficiency, the concept directly correlates Training and Performance by implicitly defining training as a lesser level of performance (the inefficient performance to be exact). Some may see this as a linguistic formality but it is not. The Efficiency Paradox is therefore in contradiction to the Training vs. Performance principle, and in this it is further misguiding and flawed.
The efficiency paradox puts forth erroneous physiological principles that are exposed when analyzing the What is Training? and the Training vs. Performance concepts. When combined, these two concepts not only defeat the Efficiency Paradox, they also create the new Efficiency Principle:
The Efficiency Principle is the act of training efficiency so that one can perform efficiently.
In the first person perspective one can explain the Efficiency Principle by saying, “We train efficiency so that we can perform efficiently.”
It is the linguistic novelty of the term Efficiency Paradox that has made it so widely publicized in the Parkour community. Unfortunately in spite of its originality, the Efficiency Paradox is an physiologically erroneous term, and its perpetuation is the direct result of a misunderstanding of the two principles What is Training? and Training vs. Performance. On the other hand, the Efficiency Principle is an accurate training guideline that succinctly explains the purpose and goal of training from a Parkour perspective through physiologically sound doctrine. Consider the Efficiency Paradox not only dead, but in the sentiment of Parkour, inefficient.