Parkour ace Kundai 'Kenji’ Murapa’s unorthodox approach to fitness can help you become a better, stronger runner.
Kenji is one of South Africa’s foremost ‘traceurs’ – parkour athletes – and is the founder of Sabotage Elite Freerunning in Cape Town. According to him, just about anyone is able to practice parkour, with age and gender being no barrier. More importantly though, it is his functional and dynamic approach to body-weight training manoeuvres that can help turn you into a better runner
Here are three moves you can do at home that offer an ideal blend of stamina, stability, balance, power. They're pretty fun to do too and will add some spice to any lockdown session:
Bar Balance Squat
Plant feet on firm rail or bar and perform normal squats while focusing on also maintaining balance. To take it up a level, do it as a single-leg pistol squat. Helps develop leg strength and coordination.
Like a box jump, but not. The emphasis is on distance rather than height and a strong focus on balance. Perform a normal jump, throwing the arms forward and cocking the knees high as you launch. Land on the balls of your feet and engage a shallow squat to absorb force and maintain balance. Great for explosive power to help with your top end speed.
Monkey See Climb-ups
This is a pull up variation that engages the climbing mechanics. Hold onto the top ledge of a wall with feet panted against the wall. Muscle up the wall and relax down repeatedly. To take it to an elite level try with one arm only. Upper body strength is crucial for solid running form.