We’ve all seen parkour in videos and clips online either through social media or other channels and we’ve all seen the crazy energy being used to travel across, above, and even through cityscapes to get from one place to another in the most creative way. But what do we actually know about parkour?
Well parkour started in France in the 80s but since then it’s been a growing phenomenon internationally. There’s greater numbers than ever performing insane stunts and pushing their bodies to the limit. Combining athletic ability, gymnastic talent and immeasurable drive, parkour is the most extreme urban sport going.
Part of the reason for the popularity of parkour is the accessible nature of it. For most sports, whether it’s a team sport or individual, you will need a range of equipment to get involved. Football needs a pitch and a ball, tennis needs a court, rackets and balls but parkour is simple- all you need is yourself. Parkour is all about your movement and your body. All you need is your own strength.
The other reason parkour has become so popular is because it’s more than just a sport. In fact it’s pretty hard to pin down exactly what parkour is but well known practitioners will often describe it as a philosophy or way of life. All we know is that parkour goes way beyond the activity and a culture has emerged. This has led to the creation of a whole new parkour style.
Do You Need Hoodies for Parkour?
Parkour style is in the way people move, but it’s also in the way people dress. The clothing is a choice that reflects the wearer and you’ll often find traceurs (parkour practitioners) in some striking ensembles.
In fact several big brands have emerged which showcase the best of what parkour has to offer. Famous parkour names have looked to establish themselves and have created lines of clothing, from socks to hats, that all parkour enthusiasts can access. In fact all of the main brands have strong ties to traceurs with long histories in parkour and they therefore know what the customer wants and needs.
Parkour is an international, urban, activity and that means it has a unique style. Global cultures mix, bring elements of Asia, America and Europe together to create something different from other sports or brands. Parkour style is about standing out.
It goes beyond mere style though. While I said before all you need for parkour is your body, and that is true, the right clothing can add a lot to your performance. Parkour as an activity requires a full range of movement that most sports don’t demand from you. It’s important that you have the freedom to achieve this, and this means lightweight and loose clothing, including pants.
On top of this parkour has some inherent dangers from slipping or falling. Parkour clothing needs to offer a level of protection to your body in order to prevent injuries. This is especially important for your trainers as your feet take a lot of impact. Specialist parkour clothing will often look to combine comfort with protection in this way.
For these reasons it’s essential to get kitted out the right way for your parkour training.
Hoodies for Parkour
Most of us have got at least a few hoodies which we wear regularly. Hoodies offer protection from the elements and comfort, but also give us a style that represents us. That makes them a perfect representation for parkour.
Parkour is all about getting from start to finish in the most efficient way and you’ll want your wardrobe to reflect that efficiency. Parkour hoodies are popular with most traceurs because they offer protection to your arms and torso. They also offer protection from the weather in all seasons which is important given the outdoor nature of parkour.
For a standard hoodie you might only look at the style, but for a parkour hoodie there’s more to consider. By looking at the quality, durability and nature of the hoodie you’ll be able to determine if it’s practical to fit your needs and your style.
Best Parkour Hoodies
There’s a lot more specialist parkour gear available than there used to be, and that means there’s a lot of choice when it comes to parkour hoodies. In order to make this easier we’ve compiled a list of the top 3 parkour hoodies and given you a quick breakdown.
APK Simple Parkour Hoodie
American Parkour (APK) have become a staple part of the traceur life. Alongside their range of clothing they have a vast array of different learning tools, videos and articles to take you from beginner to pro as quickly as possible. They’re a well established brand and it shouldn’t be a surprise to most people that they’ve made it onto the list.
The APK simple parkour hoodie is simple but effective with all the qualities needed for a parkour hoodie. On top of this the APK hoodie is really cost effective, and retails for around $30 or less. This makes it appealing even to those with a limited budget.
APK Simple Parkour Hoodie has the following features:
- Lightweight material
Designed specifically to allow your body to move, the APK hoodie is made from lightweight materials that don’t impede movement. They also allow your skin to breath helping lift away and remove sweat while you train.
- High Performance
This hoodie has a loose fitting to allow for free movement and provides protection to a large area of your body. It’s perfect for traceurs of all levels.
A simple hoodie, the APK is made to be usable with large kangaroo pockets to store your valuables. On top of that it’s machine washable so it’s no big deal if you get it dirty.
- Classic design
APK are known for their classic look and you’ll be sporting a well respected brand. The logo on the chest is embroidered, rather than printed, meaning it’s tougher and more resilient.
A simple hoodie, but one that is definitely fit for purpose. It is built to withstand a little wear and tear, so if you’re looking to get rough and push yourself it’s probably the right one for you.
Under Armour Streaker Parkour Hoodie
Under Armour are a very well known brand in the sporting industry and beyond. They specialise in clothing which is centred around performance and protection so it’s fairly easy to see how they’ve made it onto this list. One of the older sports brands around, Under Armour know how to make effective clothing.
The Under Armour Streaker made it onto the list because it offers greater protection than a lot of competitors. It’s not a specific parkour hoodie but instead it’s practical for a range of activities and sports.
The Under Armour Streaker has the following features:
Under Armour is made to adapt to your body’s needs based on the surroundings. The clothing provides insulation to warm you up but the breathable nature of the hoodie removes sweat to keep you cool when you’re pushing yourself.
- Fitted Design
Despite not having the loose cut of most parkour hoodies, the Under Armour Streaker has still proved very popular with parkour practitioners. It’s a slimmer look but actually still offers a full range of movement.
- Anti Odour
Under Armour is a quality brand and they’ve made this hoodie to ensure you look and feel your best. The anti odour technology keeps you fresh even after an intense training session.
Under Armour have opted for a simple, block colour but the logo carries weight and gives it a certain style. This is the ultimate outdoor hoodie in this price range and suitable for all levels of traceur.
H2H Sleeveless Zip Up Hoodie
H2H may not be as recognisable a name as the other brands in our top picks, but don’t let that put you off. H2H have a more unique style which a concentrated urban twist. This generally means their clothing is more recognisable and perfect for a serious traceur.
The H2H Sleeveless Zip Up Hoodie is striking with a distinct look. It’s made our list of the best parkour hoodies genuinely because it’s the parkour hoodie. Everything about it has been considered from a parkour point of view which makes it potentially the best on the list.
The H2H Sleeveless Zip Up Hoodie features:
- Fitted Protection
The H2H hoodie offers a fitted cut which hugs your body. Underneath is a layer of insulation designed to keep you warm against the elements. This also offers a layer of protection for your torso while you train.
- Free Movement
While your torso remains protected you’ll have full movement in your arms with this sleeveless hoodie. This is extremely useful for parkour which relies heavily on your strength.
- Zipped Pockets
When you’re out taking part the last thing you need is your phone to slip out of your pocket. The H2H hoodie comes with multiple zipped pockets to keep all your personal belongings close at whatever angle you end up at.
This zip hoodie is made for performance. It combines the practicalities needed by a traceur with some extra flourishes that made it stand out from the crowd. Just as importantly this hoodie looks great and is a valuable asset to all traceurs.
Choosing Your Parkour Hoodie
The truth is that there is a lot of choice out there when it comes to parkour hoodies. We’ve searched for some of the most affordable brands which offer a lot of value without a huge price tag, but if you have a large budget then you might want to aim slightly higher.
Whatever you choose make sure you consider the range of motion, the protection it offers and most importantly- make sure it fits your style.