July 1998, I come back from holidays and my brother Stephane was really into a new sport, I didn't know what it was, he didn't talk much about it... I had the opportunity to watch a video called SpeedAirMan, it was about a crazy guy who was flying around, and this guy actually lived 5 minutes driving from where I used to live ! I looked at the video, I was amazed but nothing more really.

One day, Stephane and a friend of mine, Ken, went to train with this man, David Belle. They asked me if I wanted to join them, and without knowing at all what to expect, I said yes. So here we are, in Lisses and I meet this strange man, who I don't know anything about... I stayed very quiet, and listened to everybody.
Then the session starts, we had to follow David's lead. At this time I didn't know anything about this discipline, if it had a name or anything, I was just following a man... We ended up in facing the famous cat leap at the gym staircase. David and some other people jumped. I didn't even think that it was possible for me to get there, so I wasn't scared !! For me it didn't even look like something I could reach one day...
So David helped me getting on the roof by carrying me and then we continued our journey...We finally arrived at a big grass square, after the bridge, next to the swimming pool, for those who know Lisses. It was a grass square, surrounded with rocks and trees. The idea of the game was simple : start on one rock, and finish the lap, keeping our feet off the floor...

I couldn't manage to finish the lap, even if everything looked like I could do it, I felt it was something possible. Then the session finished and I told to myself that I would come back every single day to this spot, until I could finish the lap...

It took me about 3 months to be able to finish ! During this time, I didn't think about what parkour could or couldn't be ! My only goal was to finish this single route because I knew I could do it !



When I started being more confident, I gave a try at the Dame du Lac, where I found my brother, David, and other people who would become my friends... I was the most beginner from all of them that I had my eyes wide opened and tried to learn from all these guys. In this group, there was Sebastien Goudot, Michael Ramdani, Jerome Lebret and others that had my age. So I started practising more and more with Seb and Mike, and we became very close together.

In Lisses, there was the group of the elders (David, Romain, Stephane, Cisco, etc..) and the group of the younger (Yo, Seb, Mike, Jeje). We were training apart and sometimes we heard about what one of the other group did, and we had to check it out ! Sometimes the 2 groups met and it was like : hum, let's play !

This is how I started practising parkour, this how I met it and this how I used to live it during 5 years. Every day was a different journey, which only goal was to have an encounter with my environment and share it with my friends, my parkour family.
At this time, there was only this feeling of going out, explore the environment and find ways, paths, obstacles, solutions, joy, tears, pains, falls, friends, love....

I really feel grateful for having met parkour at this period. Parkour awoke all these things I had, sleeping in my heart. Today I want to give it back to parkour, by sharing my experience and art, with any and all who would like to.


Love,

Johann