The Debrief: PKGen Questions...Blake Evitt
Blake is a Team Member at Parkour Generations Americas and delivers classes and services in the Boston region of the United States of America. A regular globe-trotter, Blake has become well known among many of the world's parkour communities, spending long stints training in the UK and France with PKGen and the Yamakasi founders. Read on to learn more...
How long have you been a Traceur?
I was introduced to the sport at a college workshop in 2008 and spent a few weeks with the Yamakasi in 2009 on a research project but I was on Division 1 track and cross-country teams at my university from 2006-2010 and we were allowed to do "outside sports". Instead I spent 2008-2010 researching parkour and writing my senior thesis about its development in France. It wasn't until I graduated and started traveling in 2010 that I was able to actually start training.
What movements are you currently working on?
Anything that relates to kongs/cat passes (kong-cats, kong-pres, dive kongs...) or lachées.
Who is your biggest influence?
I guess I'm sort of a melting pot of of influences since I never seem to stay in one place for long. I try to incorporate elements of training and style from the countries I visit into my own movement. Recently I've spent a lot of time with people from the UK, Denmark and Brazil so I guess that has influenced how I move today.
What percentage of your training is conditioning?
I come from a distance-running background so conditioning is like my comfort-zone. I was introduced to parkour training by Laurent (Yamakasi), I spend a lot of time with Forrest (PkGen), and I stayed with Martin and Mikkel (Streetmovement) in Denmark for the past 5 months so I guess I do a lot of it. It usually makes up about 40-60% of my training, depending on where I am and what I'm working on.
Favourite strength and conditioning exercise?
Running and muscle-ups = my bread and butter.
Anything to do with lachées, especially if to/from/on scaffolding.
Three current favourite training music tracks?
Gramatik - "Walkin down the Street"
Fat Freddy's Drop - "Wandering Eye"
Orishas - "Cosita Buena"
Item in your bag you couldn't go training without?
How do you approach breaking a jump?
I evaluate it and it looks doable but outside my comfort range I may try to do a similar jump nearby and build up to it. If that's not possible I try to clear my head and just do it before my "mental chatter" and active imagination start to get in the way.
Where do you see Parkour in ten years time?
All over the world and open to everyone, but hopefully still true to the philosophy and values at its core.
One piece of advice to Traceurs just starting out:
Travel. The international parkour community is a truly wonderful thing and training with a parkour community in another city, country, or continent can lead to huge improvements in your training. Even just an afternoon in a different environment can make a big difference, let alone a few days (or 2+ years).
Thanks Blake! For more on Parkour Generations Americas see www.pkgamericas.com