Bklyn Beast, the borough’s first parkour gym, will ramp up the athletic European subculture, which challenges practitioners to artfully use their bodies to leap over, duck under, and somersault across any obstacle in their paths.
Co-owner Shem Rajoon hopes the Bushwick training hub will serve as a gathering place and a learning center where aspiring “traceurs” can put in the hard work required to emulate the efficient movement and amazingly acrobatic feats depicted in online videos of the sport.
The Bogart Street gym opened quietly for classes last week and will hold a grand opening on Jan. 26. There’s a main room with a hardwood floor and padded mats, a trampoline, obstacles for hurdling and vaulting, a curved wall that fans of the TV program “Ninja Warrior” might recognize, lots of gray paint and graffiti murals to create an urban aesthetic, and a foam pit that promises soft landings for those brave enough to leap from as high as 20 feet above.
The school also offers classes in Capoeira, breakdancing, and yoga — which share many similarities with parkour, according to Rajoon.
“They all have that same fundamental principle of using your body to navigate anything and overcome obstacles,” he said.