Parkour Clothing – My favourite things to wear

Parkour clothing is an important topic as I have a lot of students come along to classes with footwear and trousers that don’t give them the best results. This is due to their shoes having a large heel, not being flexible enough or any other factor including them being boots! So below is what I personally recommend, but the other members of Team Traceur will have their own favourites (we are all very different) so they will be posting what they love in the near future. However, here we go!

Shoes

Shoes are a very important part of Parkour clothing if not the most. Find something that is thin so that you can feel what’s underneath you, and find something that is flat because if you use heeled shoes for too long your hamstring tendon will shorten making it much more likely for you to pull, tear or even snap it. If this happens it is said to be one of the worst pains and people rumour to have mistaken the sound for a gun shot! Wear flat shoes!!

K-Swiss SI-18 Rannell 2

Parkour clothing

K-Swiss SI-18 Rannell 2

 

 

 

 

 

 

This is my “go-to” shoe at the moment. They are lightweight (255g), they are a great fit for my feet (slightly wider than usual) but may be a bit loose for some People’s feet, the design is great whether you are wearing joggers, harems or shorts. They are made from mesh, suede and leather making them very durable but breathable. I have had mine for around 8 months now and I wear them everyday, that’s around 240 days of wearing!! I have been climbing and jumping around the jagged rocks of Cornwall, training the streets of London, Chelmsford, Braintree and many other urban spaces, in woods, general runs, Parkour parks – the lot and these things are still going strong.

I will always say that you should choose a flat, thin sole so that your feet are in a natural position and that you don’t rely on your shoes taking the impact instead of feeling what hurts and changing your technique. These shoes look like they have a large, padded heel, but inside they are actually very flat and thin.

They have rubber grip the whole way along the flat sole which makes it great for balancing and landing on rails. You do not want those shoes that have a dip in the arch, you’ll find that the rail will jolt towards the centre of your foot and compromise your control.

I rate these:

  • 9/10 for being suited to a beginner.
  • 9/10 for an advanced practitioner.
  • 8/10 for grip.
  • 9/10 for style.
  • 8/10 for overall comfort.
  • 10/10 for durability.

Find them here: http://www.amazon.co.uk/K-Swiss-Charcoal-SI-18-Rannell-Trainers/dp/B00OIHSBSY/ref=sr_1_9?ie=UTF8&qid=1422626324&sr=8-9&keywords=kswiss+si-18

Feiyue

Parkour clothing

Feiyue Lo

Parkour clothing

Feiyue Hi

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

I LOVE Feiyue shoes and there are many different types. The original are the Feiyue Lo as seen at the top. These are cheap and popular whereas the Feiyue Hi are also popular but a little less so and more expensive. The great thing about Feiyue shoes is that they are cheap, flexible, flat-soled and lightweight.

I use these inside and outside, but they do have a shorter life than the K-Swiss above. The end of their life usually happens when popping up and wall or doing a catleap, and shows itself in the form of a split at the ball of the foot due to the soles being worn down and flexed a lot, causing the classic Feiyue mouth. They look great as normal shoes as well as being great for Parkour. When they were first being used by Parkour practitioners there wasn’t a lot of choice, but now there are many different styles, shapes and some amazing designs from artists who have created limited edition shoes.

They are not so great for a beginner as their feet may not be toughened up yet, but inside training will be fine. They haven’t got a huge amount of grip either, but that’s more technique anyway. Let’s be honest here, they are just a lovely looking foot wrap. They will get your feet tough because they will have to be, they will get your ankles strong because they have to be, they will get your technique good because otherwise you’ll lose grip and they probably won’t last too long. However, you will love them and you won’t know quite why. If you are advanced and haven’t tried them – do! If you are a beginner and you want to throw yourself in the deep end then be my guest, but expect to have to foam roll and bath your feet for a while.

I rate these:

  • 6/10 for being suited to a beginner.
  • 9/10 for an advanced practitioner.
  • 7/10 for grip.
  • 9/10 for style.
  • 9/10 for overall comfort.
  • 5/10 for durability.

Find them here: http://www.amazon.co.uk/s/ref=nb_sb_noss_1?url=search-alias%3Daps&field-keywords=feiyue&sprefix=feiyue%2Caps

Bottoms

When looking for bottoms it is important to find something feels right both on your body, but in your mind. I often say that when I look down and see that my joggers and shoes look stable and flowy it changes the way I think and therefore the way I move. I end up actually moving more flowy because of the Parkour clothing I am wearing. This is just me and it may not matter to you, but I think I may be a bit OCD with these things.

Joggers

Parkour clothing

Slazenger Joggers

So joggers are the Parkour clothing bottoms of choice for most traceurs and freerunners, but these really are amazing. They have a closed hem so they won’t get caught under your shoes, they look nice and there is basically nothing wrong with them. You really can’t fault them! They are a nice thickness so are good in the colder months (most of our months are cold) and not too bad in summer, they have a couple of decent sized pockets for when you are walking around, but no zips so take your phone out before you jump.

The best thing about these? 2 pairs for £15 or, if you are quick, Sports Direct are selling them for £4.99 each! I am around 5″6′ (167cm) and I use 3XL. This may seem really big, but it’s a good baggyness for the flowy look.

I rate these:

  • 9/10 for being suited to a beginner.
  • 10/10 for an advanced practitioner.
  • 8/10 for style.
  • 8/10 for overall comfort.
  • 9/10 for durability.

Find them here: http://www.sportsdirect.com/slazenger-closed-hem-sweatpants-mens-482001?colcode=48200190&src=google&gclid=CjwKEAiA9KymBRD6g6iOvv2joU0SJAB0vRQyvRDxLeYOee2wOrqc0FgbY6cUo-QAkQl7Mcn8rZ-rbBoCQZHw_wcB&gclsrc=aw.ds

Harem Pants

Parkour clothing

Harem Pants

Harem pants have become ever more popular in Freerunning and Parkour clothing and have really boomed in the last year or so. I started wearing the pair on the left after finding them on Amazon.co.uk and soon started seeing others wearing similar, I then got a “loud” pair like the pair on the right and I have seen a lot of others with the same idea. They are nice and breezy and amazing for the summer, they are colourful and fun so you look like your having a good time. You just have to have the carelessness or confidence to wear them in public! They make your style look nice and adds a “floating” aspect to everything that you do.

They are not terribly durable due to them being made from quite thin, lightweight material so you may need to buy a couple of pairs at a time. In terms of fit, this is where it gets tricky. The thinner style (left) are hit and miss between getting ones that long enough and that actually fit over your Par-calfs. If you want to pull them up mid-calf for a 3/4 length look (which is awesome) you have to get just the right fit. The baggy ones (right) are also hit and miss but in the sense that sometimes they are too baggy and look like a dress and get caught under your feet when climbing and striding, or they have ridiculous pockets.

I would say if you want to look cool then, great, buy a pair but also get some normal joggers in case you need to change to something more reliable. They are also a bit more expensive costing around £20 – £50.

I rate these:

  • 3/10 for being suited to a beginner.
  • 8/10 for an advanced practitioner.
  • 9/10 for style.
  • 9/10 for overall comfort.
  • 5/10 for durability.

Find them here: http://www.amazon.co.uk/The-Hippy-Clothing-Co-Hippie/dp/B00JDH7XNS/ref=sr_1_8?s=clothing&ie=UTF8&qid=1422627278&sr=1-8&keywords=harem+pants

http://www.amazon.co.uk/Allegra-Casual-Pocket-Front-Tapered/dp/B00EZHVXWS/ref=sr_1_4?s=clothing&ie=UTF8&qid=1422627278&sr=1-4&keywords=harem+pants

Tops & Jumpers

The upper body Parkour clothing is a hard one to tackle because I wear literally anything from tighter design tops to baggy casual tops. It really depends on the person and what mood you are in. I make sure that I don’t wear any material that itches or rubs and I take the labels out of most tops because it really annoys me how big some of them are!

Jumpers are pretty much the same, but I like a baggy jumper usually and no hoods as they get in the way when you jump or flip and can be a distraction. I prefer sweaters (no zips) so that I can just pull it over my head and go (after checking that my quiff is in check and slanted at exactly 50 degrees to my right).

We are going to be offering Team Traceur branded tops and hopefully other Parkour clothing soon as many of our students have been asking. The main problem we are having is getting them made to a standard that we are happy with. They always end up peeling, fading or are just poorly printed. If you know anywhere that you think does a good job please let us know by replying to this thread.

I hope this has given you an insight in to what I like to wear, what I think is good/bad and what Parkour clothing is available, but now go and find out what you like and tell us on Facebook, email, Twitter or in person and we can try it out!

Thank you for reading.

Barry Haggis

 

 

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