Parkour champion returns to city

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He's flying without wings © Airborn Academy

He’s flying without wings © Airborn Academy

Champion freerunner Ryan Doyle has returned to his hometown of Liverpool in search of a new building to provide training for the city.

The 28-year-old, from Huyton, arrived back in September from the Seven Wonders of the World tour with MTV and has now teamed up with local group Airborn Academy to fund a move to a bigger building.

Doyle told JMU Journalism: “The problem has always been the fact that there isn’t a building that can cater for Freerunning and Parkour’s needs.

“I have been travelling the world with Red Bull doing a documentary series for MTV, but now I want to stay in Liverpool and give something back to the Parkour community which is huge.”

The Airborn Academy, which was set up last year, practices the skill of Freerunning in three different gymnastic centres in Toxteth, New Brighton and the Wirral.

But with 500 youngsters already registered, Doyle, now entering his fifth year of sponsorship with Red Bull, believes the need for a new building couldn’t be greater.

He said: “We are building an urban extreme sports centre, known as the Airborn Academy, which not only houses the Parkour community but unites the Marital Arts trickers, Freerunners, Breakdancers, Cheerleaders and more.”

Class warm up © Airborn Academy

Class warm up © Airborn Academy

A two-time Red Bull Art of Motion world champion in 2007 and 2011, Doyle has also appeared on a UEFA Champions League football ad and was cast as Finch in the 2011 film, Freerunner, which also starred Danny Dyer.

Doyle confirmed talks are already underway to capture a new building near Liverpool city centre and he has started 3D designs for the interior of the building.

He said: “We have been around pretty much every empty warehouse in Liverpool and we have narrowed it down to one where it’s the right height to have trampolines, ramps and purpose built levels with bars, swings and rails inside.

“We have even written a package to get Parkour taught at schools by PE teachers, which we want to offer to Universities in the future.”

Doyle’s freerunning skills can be seen in this video:

About Matthew Judge, JMU Journalism