Parkour is a discipline founded in France by David Belle in the 1990’s. In some places Parkour has been defined as the “fluidity and efficiency of human movement.” Others have given it a more explicative definition by saying it is, “The art of moving effectively through the environment using only the human body to overcome obstacles,” and/or “Moving from one point to another as smoothly, efficiently and quickly as possible using the abilities of the human body.”
Although these definitions are all true and accurately reflect Parkour in a performance environment, David usually explains Parkour with a much different focus. Says David about his art:
“Parkour is a method of training which allows us to overcome obstacles, both in the urban and natural environments….It’s a weapon in disguise. We train... and when one day we encounter a problem, we know that we are able to use it…It can be the art of flight, of the chase, of helping someone with a problem, or something ordinary.”
“Parkour is firstly about the useful side, to teach people how to trust themselves, to learn to be careful.”
“The philosophy [of Parkour] is always to advance, never to stop. If some time you have problems, like in life, if you have an obstacle you must always continue forward…Parkour begins when you find an obstacle in front of you and have to utilize your body to surpass it.”
Since Parkour’s foundation more than a decade ago, the discipline has spread around the world and now has communities, delegations, and committed practitioners in virtually every country.
Take Flight: The World’s First Parkour Clothing Company
At Take Flight we have always believed that Parkour was different. It is not like other sports or athletic pursuits. It is a focused discipline as defined by David Belle and characterized by practicality, preparedness, mental acuity, and closely tied into the physical condition.
In a performance environment Parkour is visually captivating and is thus innately inspiring to people of all ages and races. It is no coincidence that this is so. The physical movements that Parkour athletes do in everyday practice, such as vaults, had never been conceptualized or attempted only a decade ago. With this physical prodding at the hand of David’s inspiration, Parkour has been the prominent factor that has taken athletic performance to a previously unimaginable level.
All of these qualities mentioned, in addition to others, are what makes Parkour unique. Because of these attributes - including the physical manifestation of the practice and performance of Parkour, its philosophy, and its innate ability to encourage, inspire, and influence people - we believed that the discipline deserved a clothing company dedicated to its practice. The result was the founding of Take Flight.
There are companies out there that print t-shirts and pants with Parkour related designs and symbols. But right from the get-go we decided Traceurs deserve something better. They deserve custom Parkour apparel and custom Parkour clothing designed specifically for them to aid them in their ability to train and perform. Comfort, performability, and design have been the cornerstone of our products since day one, and we are dedicated to these principles as well as producing newer and better Parkour clothing all the time.
“For Traceurs. By Traceurs,” is a term that is use frequently in the Parkour community. Implicitly it says something about loyalty and about staying true to Parkour and its original meaning and purpose. This is another aspect that separates Take Flight as a true Parkour brand and company. Not only are we the first Parkour clothing company, our founder, Adam Dunlap, is a dedicated and experienced Parkour practitioner himself. It is his vision that brought Take Flight into existence and his dedication to Parkour that keeps the company close to our Parkour roots. The result of this focus can be read in our mission statement, worn through our clothing designs, and experienced in our community involvement.
Jump, Fly, DreamJump, Fly, Dream is the cohesive slogan that brings together Parkour and Take Flight. In addition to using Take Flight to represent Parkour and provide the highest quality custom apparel for Traceurs everywhere, it was Adam’s vision to use the company to spread the ideas of hope, inspiration, and encouragement to people around the world. Said Adam about Parkour, Take Flight, and this vision:
“Parkour is different from other disciplines and sports because it changes people. When people see Parkour and videos of David [Belle], they immediately become inspired. For the first time they see what is physically possible, and it so beyond anything they ever imagined that they start to think differently. They start to say, ‘Why have I always done things this way? Why can’t I also pursue my passions and go after my dreams?’ These are the foundational epiphanies of hope. And hope is not only a very encouraging thing, it is a necessary thing. Without hope we have nothing! Implicit in hope are also the parallel ideals of kindness, goodness, faith, courage, and love. These are the actions and feelings that humanity continually strives for and seeks, and these are the sentiments that Parkour innately transmits and perpetuates because of its nature. By creating Take Flight I saw the opportunity to use clothing to combine all these ideas and create a force for change by bringing this vision and inspiration to people around the world.”
Jump, Fly, Dream is the slogan which embodies Take Flight as a company with a purpose. It is both a call to action, and an appeal to the specific goals and aspirations everyone has to achieve. It is the central ideal in all we do and the motto by which we work to inspire and encourage you to pursue and accomplish your dreams.