Anyone who has seen the opening scene from the James Bond movie Casino Royale will appreciate the excitement the parkour chase through a Madagascan construction site brought to the film.
Here in Dorset, we are lucky to have 21-year-old professional parkour athlete Luke Stones on our doorstep. He is already passing down his knowledge coaching at Train Hard Parkour, based in The Project Climbing Centre in Poole. He is also a talented media content creator, producing advertisement videos for social media fitness and fashion brands.
DS: Hi Luke, So, for anyone who does not know – what is parkour? And is there a difference between parkour and freerunning?
Luke: “Parkour and Freerunning are virtually the same things. In short, Parkour & Freerunning is using your body to its full potential; this includes climbing, jumping, and moving through your environment in different ways. When we are doing parkour, we often look for difficult challenges that we can accomplish to better ourselves; this is not just physically with our bodies but also mentally with fear and confidence.”
DS: When did you develop a love for the sport?
Luke: “I developed my love for parkour towards the end of middle school, and entering our teens, my friends and I were looking for something to release our energy. We loved extreme sports – like skateboarding, BMX, and mountain biking; but after seeing Parkour videos on YouTube, we decided we wanted this to be our next venture. During our lunch break’s we would look for obstacles in the playground to try and recreate the moves we had seen online. I fell in love with it from there and started doing parkour whenever I had free time. It has now been nearly 10-years since I first started.”
DS: Your Instagram page @lukestonesuk shows that you are an avid traveller. What is the most exciting or surreal place you have done parkour?
Luke: “Yes, I love to travel and do parkour in as many different places as possible. It is fun to challenge myself in so many different environments. One of the best places I have done parkour is in New Zealand at Castle Hill. It is in the middle of the New Zealand mountains – there are huge rock formations that look like something out of Lord of the Rings. Many people visit Castle Hill to practice bouldering – a form of climbing. These natural formations provide a great unique opportunity for jumping around and performing my stunts.”
DS: What does the future hold for Luke Stones? Will we see you in any action movies soon?
Luke: “My favourite jobs are working on movies or commercials. I’d love to do more of this in the future as I feel it is rewarding for me to see my parkour on the big screen and giving others joy in the form of watching what I love to do. I’m also very passionate about media myself; I like to take photos & videos of my adventures and share them online to inspire others.”
Follow Luke on Instagram @lukestonesuk