This year, UK Coaching Week is from the 5th-11th of June this year, with the theme being on “Duty of Care”
We think it’s crucially important to highlight the positive work that parkour coaches are doing to support individuals within their communities, and UK Coaching Week is a brilliant way for us to do this.
We asked our community on Facebook and Instagram to highlight some of the amazing coaches and coaching organisations that embody ANY of the following:
– Duty of Care
– Physical Well-being
– Mental Health
– Participant Safety
And in today’s post, we want to highlight as many people and organisations as we can, so let’s get into it!
Spiral Freerun C.I.C.
Without a doubt, our Instagram comment section was full of comments tagging Spiral Freerun C.I.C., as well as their coaches Luke, Jesse, and Omar.
Spiral Freerun C.I.C. use their coached parkour sessions to promote the benefits that moving has on physical and mental health.
Luke and Jesse both attended a mental health first aid course with Parkour UK last year and have also helped Contendunt (A mental health-focused parkour project) in some of their suicide awareness workshops.
Spiral Freerun also have a diverse coaching team, and their “I’m Scayered” podcast discusses their experiences within parkour, including all the highs and lows of training.
Their podcast adds an extra layer of depth to the team, they detail their previous experiences with injuries, as well as a range of other topics. This is an amazing toolkit for their students, as they are able to learn more about how to be safe in parkour away from the Spiral Freerun sessions.
Spiral Freerun’s sessions run in Bedford, and if you’re looking to attend one of their sessions, you can check their website for more information here.
Follow Spiral Freerun C.I.C.
Team Reality, based out of Grimsby, was also another coaching organisation that was tagged in our Instagram comments section.
Team Reality has a real focus on the physical well-being of its students. With an in-house squat rack, their older participants can be seen lifting weights, prepping their bodies for general parkour training, or for the competition seasons over the summer.
Team Reality also takes some of their advanced students to parkour events, jams, and gatherings, helping them learn parkour training etiquette, and giving them a helping hand with integrating into the parkour community.
Team Reality have also recently launched their own podcast, “The Reality of Podcast” – in the first two episodes, they sit down with two of their students, who openly discuss competition preparation, once again adding an extra layer of depth and information available to their students away from their coached sessions.
Team Reality also host the “Grim Jam” each year, which is a two day event in their hometown. They’ve been progressing the event over the last few years, providing equal opportunities for both men and women within the sport.
You can find out more about Team Reality by visiting their website here.
Follow Team Reality
Free Your Instinct
Free Your Instinct is a young and dynamic charity that helps people with mental health support needs through the delivery of specialist Parkour classes by qualified and experienced coaches.
Their aims and objectives include:
- To use Parkour to promote mental and physical well-being to those who have recognised a mental health need
- To physically and mentally enrich the lives of users through parkour
- To offer development opportunities and coaching
- To promote the Charity within the Mental Health community
- To ensure a duty of care to all members of the club
Free Your Instinct operates in London, Somerset, and Bristol, and has been one of the leading providers of mental health parkour sessions since 2015.
Queer Parkour & Fluidity Freerun Academy
Queer Parkour is a community-focused group, fronted by 4 members of the parkour, art du deplacement, and freerunning community who identify as LGBTQIA+.
Their four leads are dotted across the UK (and the world!), and they’re working to build a community, give a voice, and improve accessibility and experience for the LGBTQIA+ community in Parkour, Art du Deplacement, and Freerunning.
The four individuals who started Queer Parkour are Jia Wei @officialjiawei (he/she/they, Cardiff and team TOFU Parkour, Malaysia), Louiseanne @louiseannewong (she/they, team Esprit Concrete, London), Amy @dallex_ (she/her, Manchester) and Kel @kelglaister (she/her, Melbourne in Motion, Australia).
They have been collaborating with Fluidity and now we have a bespoke membership with them. They have also been invited to join Sports Network Wales.
Otis, from Fluidity Freerun, then curated a membership for them that includes 8 hours of either open sessions, “Funky Fridays” which is a creative movement class, and soon – bespoke LGBT+ sessions specialised for the group.
You can choose to join any session you want, and it’s affordable for all members. It’s an inclusive way for those who might want to join Parkour, but it might be too expensive for them, so it allows them to come and experience parkour and find community there.
Follow Queer Parkour
Follow Fluidity Freerun
Contendunt is a mental health-focused community project run by Callun from our digital support team. Callun is also a parkour coach, working in Crawley. Callun fuses his knowledge and experiences with mental health to provide resources and information to the parkour community through his website, where he has listed the helplines of over 100 different countries and regions, meaning anyone in the world can access the support they need.
Parkour Generations London
Parkour Generations London is also taking a stand on mental health. They recently hosted Contendunt for a suicide awareness workshop, which a number of their coaches attended.
Parkour Generations also has a wide customer base, offering classes for all ages, from children all the way through to adults.
Parkour Generations provides parkour sessions to help all individuals get into parkour. For some adults, there is a concern about how the body will take impact. Parkour Generations London recognises this and creates and provides workshops to help adults of all ages get into parkour.
Follow Parkour Generations London
Aspire Parkour Academy
Aspire Parkour Academy runs sessions in Peterborough. On their calendar of sessions, they include multiple sensory-friendly classes a week. It only takes a glance at Aspire Parkour Academy’s reviews to see how impactful these sessions truly are.
These classes provide a calmer and quieter atmosphere with fewer distractions. They have designed the session with additional needs in mind, such as ASD, ADHD, and SPD.
The Sensory Friendly class is limited to 12 and they have 6 coaches on hand, giving a coach-to-participant ratio of 1:2.
Aspire Parkour Academy has also recently sent a handful of their coaches on one of Parkour UK’s MHFA courses, taking a stand on mental health and equipping their coaches with the tools they need to deal with those scenarios.
Aspire Parkour also offers DofE volunteering opportunities, as well as working closely with Children’s University Peterborough.
Follow Aspire Parkour
Plymouth Parkour provides parkour and freerunning classes in the Plymouth area.
Plymouth Parkour runs after-school activities at Secondary schools for age group 11-15. Among participants, they develop a youth crew team providing them guided coaching, opportunities to help around workshops and classes, and providing opportunities for them to perform at festivals and events.
They also work with primary school age groups at special educational education units, which specialise in children needing a break from the mainstream education system with behavioral challenges from various causes. They provide a once-a-week PE activity which has a massive impact on the students.
Plymouth Parkour also offers outreach sessions, involving groups of youth in parks and estates inspiring them to learn some parkour or calisthenics (bodyweight training)
Most of the community work they do is on a voluntary basis, and you can find out more by visiting their website here.
Follow Plymouth Parkour
Project Z Parkour
Project Z Parkour provides parkour coaching sessions in Manchester. Their mission is to create a safe and enjoyable environment for individuals to learn how to interact with their environment and surroundings in new exciting ways.
Project Z Parkour offers a range of services for children and adults in the North-West area, spreading from Manchester to Bury, Bolton, Stockport, and more.
Their reviews say it all! Tom and the team at Project Z Parkour are truly passionate about their work, making a positive impact for young people, and offering opportunities for them to grow and develop.
Follow Project Z Parkour
Amy Harcourt / Dallex
Amy is a leading figure in both the LGBTQIA+ community and parkour community. Amy is a Parkour UK Level 1 qualified coach, and recently assisted Parkour Generations at the Women’s International Parkour Weekend.
When it comes to safeguarding, Amy aims to work with Queer Parkour, Parkour UK, and other organisations to provide valuable knowledges, insight, information and guidance for parkour practitioners in the LGBTQIA+ community. This will include help and support for individuals within the LGBTQIA+ community to safely access support if they are being discriminated against.
Amy strongly believes that no one should be ashamed of who they are, and is always there to support events and individuals who champion her message.
Amy is also a huge advocate for being unapologetically yourself. Amy wants parkour to be a safe and inclusive space for everyone, regardless of age, background, gender, identity or religion.
Parkour UK regards the safeguarding and welfare of everyone and specifically children (under the age of 18) and adults at risk to be of paramount importance.
Safeguarding is everyone’s responsibility; please ensure that you report any concerns in order that we can all keep all participants safe from abuse or forbidden conduct. We would ask you to act on your concerns, but it is not your responsibility, or that of volunteers, coaches, or parents to investigate or decide if abuse is occurring, it is the responsibility of safeguarding experts.
Our safeguarding policy summary can be found here.
Our full safeguarding policy is available here, which includes greater detail about offenses and ‘Position of Trust’ legislation, responsibilities, Good Practice, Parkour UK processes, safe recruitment, and specific circumstances.
With parkour’s continued growth, there are so many inspiring coaches and coaching organisations who are doing amazing things for their community when it comes to duty of care. We have tried to list as many as possible in the timeframe we had to put this article together, but there is no denying that there are some names and organisations missing from this list.
UK Coaching Week is one of the many fantastic opportunities we can use to highlight the incredible work done within our sport. If a name of a coach or coaching organisation is missing from this list, please let us know by reaching out to us on our social media channels. It helps us develop and grow these highlight articles in the future!