PORTLAND, Ore. (KOIN) — At Forge Parkour, the line between working out and playing around can tend to blur. That’s because it’s a gym entirely dedicated to an activity known as parkour or movement over obstacles.
Parkour can involve jumping, rolling, climbing, or doing flips on to and off of objects so the interior of the gym looks something like a cross between a traditional military obstacle course and skateboard park.
They offer courses for children in a safe environment with a less difficult kids’ section, as well as more challenging classes for teens and adults.
Ninja Warrior and Nerf camps are even available during spring and summer break.
“Every kid leaves and they just have a blast…but what they don’t realize is the kids are sweaty and they just got a work out. And the parents are happy because their kids are going to go home and take a nap,” explained Forge Parkour Owner Austin Schatz.
Schatz first got into the sport when he was tasked with doing something he’d never done before, for a school assignment. He and a friend decided to visit a parkour gym and they never looked back.
“We just got hooked. It was one of those things where it’s like can’t stop doing it,” Schatz said.
From there, the two friends joined competitions, began working at a parkour facility, and started coaching.
That friend who tried it for the first time with Schatz is now Forge Parkour’s head coach, Niko Pal.
The design of the building resembles a boulder and is by Schatz’ father, who is an architect. The interior was designed by Schatz.