How to Backflip Off a Wall

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The running wallflip, aka “backflip off a wall”, is a simple parkour (also known as free running) move where you run up to a wall and basically walk up it and flip backwards, landing on your feet. It’s not that complicated, but if you’re not already into parkour and a bit experienced, then it can certainly be a bit scary–and this is where your friends come

in, they’re going to act as spotters and make sure you don’t break your own neck. You need at least two of them and they need to be able to support your weight. I’ve got an awesome tutorial video where you’re going to see someone learning how to backflip off a wall from start to finish with two spotters helping him out, but first a few tips…

Ok, well first off we’re all going to laugh at another’s misfortune and, at the same time, learn what NOT to do (i.e. why you shouldn’t ever do this on drywall):

Now, seriously…

  • The first and most important thing to remember is that the real key to doing this correctly is to get that first step high enough up the wall so that you can flip off of it.
  • You should be entirely concentrating on becoming horizontal to the ground, because then all you have to do is really drive that leg skywards to give yourself the rotational momentum you need.
  • Try practicing by putting a trampoline right up against the wall and using it to do a rebound flip with, this way you’ll get the altitude you need to practice the flip without having to run up the wall–the trampoline does the work for you.
  • This may seem obvious, but it bears pointing out: make sure you’ve got something fairly soft to land on: at least some grass or something, definitely don’t try this for the first time on concrete.

Ok, now watch this a few times with a couple of friends so everyone knows what they’re supposed to do, then go find a wall together somewhere you won’t get arrested, and try not to inflict any serious injuries upon yourself ๐Ÿ˜€ :

Additional Resources and Further Reading

If you haven’t already seen it you have got to check out this show I just saw called PK Takes Vegas – A Free Run Through Las Vegas (you can get it there from Amazon)–basically, what it is, is a camera crew following around 7 of the world’s best free runners as they tear ass through Las Vegas by jumping off neon lights, unusual obstacles, doing ‘Natural Parkour’ and working with Cirque du Soleil, and possibly the world’s highest hand-stand. Very cool. If you want a guide to help you along as you learn check out The Parkour and Freerunning Handbook.

The top two free sites I recommend for more parkour/free running info are: AmericanParkour.com and LearnParkour.com. Both have tips and advice, plus the most valuable thing you could ask for: active forums where you can talk to other parkour enthusiasts and get advice and help from people who are way better at this than you are.

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