September 2011: two traceurs from Munich, Nadja Hahn and Johannes Mikulasch, went to Belgium to get insight into what is said to be the origins of Parkour – Méthode Naturelle of Georges Hébert.
Every traceur heard the history of Parkour that shortly goes like: „Georges Hébert – Martinique – Méthode Naturelle – Vietnam – Raymond Belle – David Belle“. But hardly ever anyone heard whether and how MN is lived and practiced nowadays.
We heard that in Belgium some groups exists that still practice MN, we looked them up on the Web and found Fédération Belge d’Hébertisme (FBH). That is what they call Méthode Naturelle there – Hébertisme. We sent an E-mail to their president Christian Beugnier who welcomed us to come over.
What we did 🙂
Our first day with them was Saturday and we were welcomed to join the 25th anniversary party of the Center in Thuin. We expected some kind of training session, well, wrong guess! They had planned something special – an orienteering run of 8 to 21 km, with local wine degustation every 2 km. We joined the middle one, and ended up hiking and running through the villages, woods and fields. And we had to read a funny map, see picture. We though „hey we are traceurs we are fit“ , but fortunately we had really skilled strong people on our side to bring us to the finish point 🙂
After the barbecue party the president drove us to the Hébert trail of the Thuin center and showed us where the regular training takes place, and also showed us around the region. That was a nice day!
We spent two next days on our own checking around the city of Namur, Bruges and swimming in the cold shallow North Sea.
Our second training was with the FBH Center of Val d’Heure, in Jamioulx. It was the regular weekly senior session of 1.5 hours. The participants were over 50 up to 80, and it took place in their Hébert park.
The training itself was something new to us traceurs: we didn’t stop moving during the entire session, we went through alternating movement families – running then throwing, crawling, balance, climbing etc. The team spirit was amazing, the atmosphere too!
After the training, our bodies and mind felt so charged and healthy!
But what was most impressive is how fit, skilled and jolly the participants of the training were (and they all were way better in throwing than we :))
On the spot we felt so inspired that we decided to established MN training in Munich when back home.
Back then in 2011 we did not take any pictures or videos during the training, just of the Hébert park for our own memory. But we visited the center of Val d’Heure again in the following years and made that video for you!