If you know what parkour is, you’ll know a parkour accident can be a painful experience to have. You might also know the sport by the term free-running. It was created in the Eighties by several men living in France, although the term parkour didn’t come into use until 1998. It has since become well known across the world. The word parkour comes from ‘parcours’, a French word meaning ‘route’. It has become more popular in recent years, with some schools even offering free lessons in the sport. Some schools in Westminster offer this, and youth crime fell by 69% when parkour courses started being offered.
It’s fair to say the sport is not for everyone. It involves moving through terrain by using nothing other than the human body. Thus, it is a sport that challenges both the mind and the body. It requires a good level of fitness, as well as an understanding of how to move and how to get from one place to the next safely. While it might sound like something you’d do in the great outdoors and in wide-open spaces, this is only partly true. People practise the discipline (and great discipline is involved in many ways) in urban areas, where buildings, benches and other structures provide a real challenge.
Examples of a parkour accident
While any sport can potentially result in participants being injured, the injury possibilities resulting from a parkour accident can be quite pronounced. We’ve put together a list of just some of the injuries that could potentially occur in a parkour accident:
- Cuts, grazes and bruises – self-explanatory and possible to sustain to any part of the body in a fall
- Falls from height – more ambitious participants practise the sport in high places, even jumping from one building to the next, or making their way around the perimeter. A fall from a roof could be fatal or incur life-changing injuries.
- Broken bones – an awkward fall onto a hard (or even soft) surface can easily break one or more bones
- Head injuries – again, if someone falls awkwardly, a strike to the head is quite possible
- Cartilage, patella or soft-tissue damage to the knees – falling onto your knees could easily lead you to twist one awkwardly or break your kneecap, or cause other damage internally to tendons, ligaments or muscles
As you can see, the nature of the sport means participants can be in all kinds of positions when they suffer an accident. The added potential of practising the sport at height can mean there is the chance of suffering more serious injuries as well.
Even if a full recovery can be made, it can take a while to complete this. For example, a broken leg will take around six to eight weeks to heal. Serious head injuries may take much longer, and may potentially result in life-changing consequences. People who suffer such injuries will be assessed on the Glasgow Coma Scale, or GCS, to ascertain how bad the head injury may be. These are just two examples of the potential outcome of an injury suffered in a parkour accident.
Make sure you practise parkour in a safe space
Some areas have parkour venues you can use. These should be much safer, since they are designed for the sport and will not have as many potential hazards as your average town or city environment, which was not designed for such a sport to take place in. Most councils put health and safety practice into play to reduce the risk of injuries occurring.
However, you should also take care to look after yourself and to know your own limitations. Watching someone practising this sport and making it look easy is one thing. However, as you may already know, overestimating your abilities can easily lead to a parkour accident. In general, over 14,000 people die each year because of an accident. While this covers all accidents caused in a wide variety of circumstances, it’s clear the challenges of parkour have the potential to create situations where a parkour accident could happen.
If you’ve already been injured, were you at fault for causing your parkour accident?
The issue of fault is an important one to determine. Of course, in some instances, the person who was practising the sport might be to blame. It is very easy to overestimate your skills, especially after watching others make challenging moves look easy. The combination of running, climbing and jumping involved looks simple when displayed by someone who is fit, experienced and knows what they are capable of. Even then, there is no guarantee that person wouldn’t suffer an injury at some stage if they misjudged a move.
However, there is the potential for someone to be hurt when they have done nothing wrong. For instance, you might experience a slip, trip or fall because there was a hazard that was unprotected and was the ultimate cause of the accident.
Find out whether you have an opportunity to claim compensation
You won’t think about compensation when you first experience your accident, but there could come a time later when this occurs to you as a possibility. Perhaps that’s why you have arrived on our website – to find out more and to see whether a claim could be possible for you to make. It’s easier to find out the answers than you’d think, as you’ll shortly see.
To see whether it is, simply call us at Accident Advice Helpline. This can be done on 0800 689 0500 or 0333 500 0993 from your mobile. We can provide no-obligation advice and our service is proud to have Dame Esther Rantzen as its patron. With our expert advice, you can see whether a no-win, no-fee* claim might be a possibility. If so, one of our professional injury compensation lawyers will guide you through the process of claiming for your parkour accident. If you’re in any doubt, call today and benefit from our advice and support when you need it most.