PREFACE: In 2016, we partnered with the Division of Kinesiology and Health at the University of Wyoming to deconstruct various parkour landing techniques. The study was just published by the Journal of Human Kinetics—and with free/open access for all!
In this study, landing forces and techniques by 20 parkour coaches and athletes from various Apex School of Movement locations were analyzed using high-speed cameras and 3-dimensional coordinates set up at Apex Boulder (now in Louisville, CO). Special thanks to Amos Rendao, Boyi Dai, Jacob S. Layer, Taylour J. Hinshaw, Ross F. Cook, Janet S. Dufek, and all the Apex athletes and coaches who took part in the study.
When I heard the news yesterday, I asked Dr. Dai a few follow-up questions:
Q: “What do you think is the biggest takeaway from this study?”
A: “Landing from a high height does not necessarily result in injury if appropriate landing techniques are used. This finding has important implications for injury prevention for other athletes, as many injuries such as ACL and MCL injuries occur when athletes land from much less height.”
Q: “What kind of follow-up studies do you think would be most interesting/useful?
A: “We would like to perform follow-up intervention studies with athletes who are participating in sports involving jump-landing activities such volleyball, basketball, and soccer. We plan to quantify whether these athletes can safely learn parkour roll and landing techniques in a short period of time (about 1 week) and then execute these techniques to decrease lower extremity loading in landing. Our long-term goal is to implement this type of landing training program in many sports teams and to track whether it can help decrease landing related lower extremity injuries.”