Michael and Heather Kleyn hope to establish a culture of movement at their new Parkour gym, Ethos Parkour and Movement Inc., opening soon in Penticton. (Phil McLachlan - Western News)

Approval from council solidifies plans for Penticton parkour gym

Michael and Heather Kleyn hope to create a culture of movement, and help youth overcome challenges.

There’s an odd theory that cats always land on their feet – but not many people know that with enough training, humans can become pretty good at this same skill.

Michael Kleyn knows full well the value of being quick on your feet. About one year ago, he collided head-on with a vehicle while on his bicycle, flew over the car, but somehow rolled out of it.

Besides some cuts, scrapes, bruises and a stiff shoulder, he was none the worse for wear. He attributes his quick reflexes to years of training in the art of parkour.

Parkour, for those not familiar with the sport, is the activity of moving rapidly through an area, negotiating obstacles by running, jumping and climbing. The goal is often to get from one point to the other in the most efficient and fastest way possible.

READ MORE: Long-term lease of city parkland off the table in south Okanagan

Since he was young, Kleyn has been moving. With over 40 years of experience, he has started teaching youth in the South Okanagan. His teachings in the art of movement have led him around the world.

Kleyn’s classes have since become a big hit in communities surrounding Penticton; so much so that Kleyn decided to set up a parkour gym in Penticton, the first in the South Okanagan.

On Tuesday night, council unanimously approved a three-year temporary use permit for Ethos Parkour and Movement Inc. to set up in Penticton’s industrial district. A large warehouse located at 647 Okanagan Avenue East is soon to be filled with structures and mats for individuals of all ages to maneuver around.

Michael and his wife Heather started Ethos Parkour together, a combined vision to promote an active lifestyle through movement.

“Parkour has been described as an alternative sports opportunity for kids who maybe don’t fit into the basketball mould or the soccer mould,” said Heather.

Although there are both individual and team events within the sport, Parkour is very much individualized activity. Some youth have a wide range of skills, and some not so much, but Heather says all are celebrated.

“You’re always going after your personal best,” she said.

“And those kind of breakthroughs — when a kid starts out a class not able to do something, and then they’re able to — we believe that carries over into their character, and they’re able to hold their head high.”

Michael that although Parkour is very much an individualized sport, youth in their classes often work with each other, and encourage each other when they conquer a problem or obstacle.

“That’s honestly the big reward in a sense, the part I really enjoy the most is watching youth, kids, teens, and even parents … overcoming obstacles in their lives, mindsets and fears,” he said.

Their goal is to create a culture of movement which will become their “ethos,” or mantra.

While in Mexico, the Kleyns became involved with an abolitionist group, a group that exists due to the high level of human trafficking in the south. This brought about their name, the idea of freedom. Freedom of movement, freedom of expression through movement, but also the freedom from human trafficking.

The end goal, they hope, is to have Ethos support anti-human trafficking groups.

The duo hopes to open the new parkour gym in mid-January and will host a variety of classes as well as birthday parties.

To learn more about the gym, visit Facebook.com/EthosParkour, ethosparkour_est2010 on Instagram or contact Michael for registration at 250-918-8616.

READ MORE: Ukraine pledges to help Canada get access to Iran plane investigation

READ MORE: Youth filmmakers showcase senior stars in “Seniors Got Talent” series

To report a typo, email: editor@pentictonwesternnews.com.

Get local stories you won't find anywhere else right to your inbox.
Sign up here

 

Michael and Heather Kleyn hope to establish a culture of movement at their new Parkour gym, Ethos Parkour and Movement Inc., opening soon in Penticton. (Phil McLachlan - Western News)

Just Posted

RDOS budget videos available online

Budget must be completed by March 31

Funding approved for conservation projects in South Okanagan and Similkameen

Regional District of Okanagan Similkameen provides funds for nine projects

Nearly 12,000 children living in poverty throughout Okanagan: report

BC Child Poverty Report Card includes stats for Central and North Okanagan, Okanagan-Similkameen

‘Green’ solution for excessive cannabis packaging a hit with Penticton consumers

Tweed/Terracycle recycling program for cannabis products well-used, well-received by consumers.

Health upgrades in South Okanagan and Similkameen forecast to cost nearly $10 million

Capital projects include CT scanner, medical vacuum system, ultrasounds and more

Fashion Fridays: The basics you need for your body type

Kim XO, helps to keep you looking good on Fashion Fridays on the Black Press Media Network

Was Bigfoot just spotted on a Washington State webcam?

Sherman Pass is rougly 70 kilometres south of Grand Forks, B.C.

B.C. employer health tax wins ‘paperweight award’ for red tape

Businesses forced to estimate payroll, pay new tax quarterly

Construction activity in RDOS tops $48 million

Total of 527 building permits issued within Regional District of Okanagan Similkameen in 2019

VIDEO: Dashcam records near-miss by bad driver near Sooke

Driver crossed four lanes of traffic and back over again, barely missing three other vehicles

North Okanagan youth mental health services boosted by RBC

$50,000 grant gives youth greater access to services

New U.S. LNG terminal near northwestern B.C. town proposed

AlaskCAN International LNG wants terminal just over Canadian border, but using B.C gas

Couple wonders who’s in a Cariboo photo that’s been hanging in their home for years

Charles and Lynn Dick believe the image was taken at the 70 Mile Road House

Most Read