At our heart, we are a coaching organisation with a range of classes in Edinburgh. Our classes focus on non-competitive, enjoyable physical training based on parkour, for all levels.
We have classes designed for everyone! If you are an unfit fifty something determined to look after your body, you have come to the right place! But also, if you are a young athlete looking for a new outlet for your energy and drive we have a fantastic community of driven people you can meet and learn from.
Parkour is a physical training methodology rather than a set of movements. It teaches you to challenge yourself and succeed in the challenges you face. As a result, Access Parkour aims to embody this concept above everything. And our highly experienced coaches look forward to helping you begin.
So what does that look like?
Our range of Kids parkour classes teach students the physical movements of parkour through demanding physical and technical challenges.
We teach safe technique and risk assessment skills and then challenge the students to complete a huge range of different challenges. The students become self aware, independent and physically competent. It’s also incredibly fun and rewarding.
Our Adult classes recognise how diverse people are and we offer all sorts of classes.
Along with regular parkour training, we offer Accessible Movement classes. These indoor classes focus on developing basic movement patterns, based on the conditioning and mobility work developed by parkour coaches to strengthen the body. These classes are aimed at those who are brand new to exercise or those who need help developing their full range of motion and mobility.
Our regular Outdoor classes run in all weather and are demanding, physical and technical. Outdoors, you will learn to use the environment to challenge yourself, overcome obstacles, get stronger, fitter and more confident in your own abilities.
We also have an extensive presence in schools across Edinburgh teaching as part of the Active Schools Programs and as part of the PE curriculum.
Access Parkour started as a solution to a problem.
Somewhere in the last few decades, we stopped moving and started sitting. Children stopped playing and started gaming. The majority of employment moved from physically demanding activities to nine-to-five office jobs. Many would argue that this is good. Life is not as hard as it used to be, and most people live more comfortable lives.
But through living comfortably we forgot how to live any other way. Any action you do not perform regularly is an action that you forget. If your day involves nothing but sitting, and occasionally moving from one seat to another, eventually, all you will be able to do is sit.
We are not talking about putting on a pair of trainers and going for a run every other week. Access Parkour believes in the fundamental tenants of parkour; To be strong to be useful. We strive to live in a world where we are constantly challenged, constantly adapting and constantly achieving.
To achieve this, Access Parkour introduces people to movement and challenge through parkour training. But we also strive to convert others to our cause. The more people who live with the same ethos as us, the better off we will all be. Whether that is simply attending an Access class once a week so you can reach the bottom shelf in the kitchen, or dedicating your life to parkour, we are here to help you every step of the way.
While our focus has always been on coaching, we regularly find our services in demand for all sorts of reasons. So, in 2017, we formed Access Performance. The performance section of our company contains a wide cross section of skills and backgrounds. From martial arts and stunts, high level Parkour performance as well as partnered acrobatic and circus disciplines (even unicycling!)
Access Performance is unique in that many of our performers are also some of the top coaches in the country and we are able to provide bespoke mixtures of performance and outreach. We have provided performances for small charity events, adverts, photo shoots and Edinburgh's Hogmanay Celebrations. Members of our team have traveled all over Europe as part of a Circus Performing troupe and we even have extensive experience in in-house video production thanks to Donald Dalziel
We aim to reclaim P.E. It should be physical education, rather than just another hour of playing sports. It is our firm belief that without sufficient grounding in movement, we lose out in all aspects of life. Our brains are designed to control our bodies, and Access Parkour aims to help schools and school children rediscover the joy of both learning and play through movement.
We want to initiate a wider discussion of how we, at all levels, interact with physical exercise. As children, we are introduced to exercise as a method of getting involved in competitive sports. Almost all PE curricula and games initiatives constantly revolve around competitive sport. We seem to have removed physical education from our PE. This has a number of problematic knock-on effects:
• Our children are immediately ranked on their competence in terms of sport and those who do not excel are told that exercise simply is not for them.
• We continuously link competition with physical exercise.
• We forget to impart physical education: proprioception, dexterity, functional fitness.
At Access, we want to interrupt this cycle. We do not want to get rid of all competitive sports, but we do want to create an understanding: that there is more to being fit than being competitive. And parkour; with its focus on personal goals and non-competitive achievement; is a solid basis for this reclamation of physical education.
Frequently asked questions
Too much choice, what should I do?
I'm a beginner. Can I try Parkour?
Yes! The entire point of a parkour class is to provide beginners with a way to get into the sport. The outdoor classes are a bit more adventurous than the indoor classes, but all of our classes are suitable for beginners and you will be safely led through the basic movements from the moment you enter your first class.
What should I wear?
Clothes you feel comfortable moving in. Normally jogging bottoms and a tshirt in summer and then add a thermal layer and a jumper in the winter. Comfy trainers are best. The thinner the better. Bring water. Water is good for you.
Can I Drop-in?
Can I book from my phone/tablet?
Do I need to book?
We use booking to make sure that enough coaches are booked onto each class so that we can accommodate the demand. We never guarantee that drop-ins will be able to take part in a class but we will always do our best to make sure that they can if there is space. So feel free to risk it. But booking is very easy. So please do your best.
How do I know where the Outdoor Parkour Class is?
You need to join the outdoor class mailing list. Email us at email@example.com as soon as possible and we will get you hooked up. There's also a sign up page.
I'm worried everyone will be a crazy backflipping 18 year old monkey
Our regular students range in age from 16 into their late 60s. Our outdoor regulars are both male and female, young and old and all keen to welcome new folk. If you are still unsure you can come along to our Back in The Game classes and then graduate outdoors when you feel secure and ready. We have never met anyone who is too unfit to join in the Back in The Game classes and trust us, you will not be an exception.
I'm really worried about something the FAQ hasn't answered
That’s perfectly normal. Please email us on firstname.lastname@example.org and ask away. We’ll get back to you as soon as we can.
My child has never done Parkour before. When can they join?
Our children's classes are all drop-in so there's no need to wait and so long as you book you are guaranteed a spot in the class.
I'm worried for my/my child's safety.
Parkour is a sport that takes place entirely on hard surfaces and it can sometimes have a daredevil reputation in popular media. So we're also very concerned about making our classes seem as safe as possible.
Do you climb on roofs?
The culture of climbing onto roofs and daredevil stunts you see on youtube are akin to skiers that attempt to ski down Mount Everest. We're not saying it doesn't happen, it just has very little to do with a child getting their first ski lesson on the nursery slope at Hillend.
Who will be teaching myself or my Kids?
If you head on over the the 'Meet the coaches' page you can see the friendly team of qualified coaches. Also, when you book into a class, you can see which specific coach will be leading the sesion.
All our coaches are qualified, first aid trained and personally selected and approved by Access Parkour's high standard of teaching.
Can I see some pictures from your classes?
Yes of course!
We have a media gallery page here: www.accessparkour/gallery