|Look up freerunning in Wiktionary, the free dictionary.|
|Country of origin||France, United Kingdom|
|Famous practitioners||Sebastien Foucan, Daniel Ilabaca, Ryan Doyle|
Freerunning (or free running) is defined as the art of expressing oneself in his or her environment without limitation. It is a discipline founded by Sebastien Foucan and aims to incorporate everything that is useful. It started in 2003 and was developed as a more inclusive form of the discipline of Parkour.
The word 'freerunning' was first used in the Jump London documentary. The name came about because of a suggestion by Guillaumme Pelletier, who was working with Sebastien Foucan at the time. The reasoning behind the name was, to quote Foucan, "'Free' because it's free, and just 'running'." 
Although in the documentary it was used as an English translation of Parkour, Foucan has since said that the confusion came out of the fact that he was still formulating his ideas at the time.
The central principle of freerunning is that one should express him/herself in his or her environment without limitations.
Foucan lists a number of other complimentary principles in his book, including "Learn to overcome obstacles" and "Competition is a limitation and an illusion" 
Origins in Parkour
In Western Europe the idea moving past obstacles for personal development originated with Georges Hébert. He observed untrained native tribes in Africa with fantastic athletic ability and created the 'natural method' system to train people using the same ideas. His ideas eventually led to the 'assault course' which is now a standard of military training.
These ideas were picked up by a young Raymond Belle who used them to practical effect while separated from his family during the First Indochina War. When he moved to France and started a family he passed on these ideas to his son, David. Over time, other young people were attracted to these ideas and a small group formed, including Sebastien Foucan.
This group trained together for several years and in 1997, through David's brother Jean-Francois, they started to attract attention and be invited to perform at events. Eventually though, the group of friends that had practised together started to have different needs and split apart, with different members wanting to go in different directions.
Sebastien Foucan wanted to create a discipline that was more personal to the individual and more easily adapted to suit each person.
His idea was similar to that of Bruce Lee when creating Jeet Kune Do. Foucan wanted to take everything that was useful and everything that he liked and combine it into one discipline based on his existing Parkour practice.
Foucan's early ideas were first spread through the Jump London documentary in 2003. Later he appeared in other productions like Casino Royale and Madonna's Confessions tour. With each appearance both the discipline and Foucan himself increased in fame.
Freerunning in popular culture
- Foucan, Sebastien (28th October 2012). Sebastien Foucan - Find your way - London Real. (Interview). London Real. London. http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=qGq1j_xyzHM. Retrieved 3 July 2013.
- Foucan, Sebastien (2008). Freerunning. U.K.: Michael O'Mara Books. p. 8. ISBN 978-1-56975-652-2.
- Foucan, Sebastien (2008). Freerunning. U.K.: Michael O'Mara Books. p. 19. ISBN 978-1-56975-652-2.
- Declan Saldana (27 January 2012). "Parkour Legends: Daniel Ilabaca, Tim Shieff and Oleg Vorslov". Retrieved 3 July 2013.
- "George Hébert and the Natural Method of Physical Culture". Archived from the original on 23 March 2005. Retrieved 3 July 2013.
- Belle, David (2009). Parkour. Intervista. pp. 31–70. ISBN 978-2-35756-025-3.
- Angel, Julie (2011). Ciné Parkour. pp. 17–20. ISBN 978-0-9569717-1-5.
- Belle, David (2009). Parkour. Intervista. pp. 71–79. ISBN 978-2-35756-025-3.