Image source: Pixabay.com
Parkour or free running is an urban sport which involves vaulting over staircases, jumping across rooftops, climbing high walls, rolling, swinging, and what not. Ever since the people got to know about parkour, it’s been extremely popular. We regularly see videos on Facebook and Instagram about parkour enthusiasts doing extremely difficult courses where buildings are their obstacles and they finish the course with style and ease. Movies have implemented parkour into their stunts as it looks exceptionally phenomenal. It isn’t easy as it looks because you need to have ninja-like agility and be exceptionally fearless when free running.
On the other hand, you would think that parkour is only for humans, but even dogs have started doing it. It might be a little hard to believe that your four-legged friend can do tricks like parkour enthusiasts. As dogs are fast and agile, they find it easy to jump off walls, climb fences, make sharp turns on tree trunks and building corners to name a few.
Ever since parkour has been adapted to dogs, it has been rapidly growing in popularity as many places are offering urban obstacle courses that are meant for dogs. Some places are even offering courses to teach your dogs a couple of tricks. It’s the best way right now for dogs to get physical and mental stimulation.
International Dog Parkour Association
It started off as a fun exercise but now it has become so popular that there is an International Dog Parkour Association. The association has standardized moves and offers grades and titles to dogs that successfully complete its levels. There are 5 levels of titling:
Each level is significantly harder than the previous one and dogs have to master specific skill sets to earn the title. The specific skill set includes the following:
- Crawling under obstacles
- Jumping into boxes
- Balancing on objects as wide as the shoulders of the dog
- Using two feet and four feet on a variety of obstacles
- Tic Tac or placing all their feet on an object that is placed at an angle of 45° and make a tight turn after it
On top of that, the owners and their dogs need to get creative while clearing the obstacles so that they can look different from other teams that are taking part. The sport works on the strength and balance of the dog.
It is the perfect sport for dogs that live in the city as it is an engaging and fun exercise.