Let's get straight to the point here...
This tour cost a lot of money.
Not money from the brand but personal money that I (Giles) invested to make it happen. To be completely honest, once the figures started stacking up, I think that a lot of people wouldn't have gone ahead with it. But, much like in Parkour, I had committed & I was going through with the plan. We all know what happens when you don't commit. You bail.
So why did I go through with this when in reality it was almost certainly going to negatively affect my short term financial future?
Because I very proudly sponsor some of the best up & coming Parkour & Freerunning athletes in the world. That isn't an opinion. It's simple fact.
Why should these guys who are all teenagers(aside from Marx), and who are pushing the sport to ridiculous new levels not get the support they deserve?
The general piece of advice you hear in our sport is the following - Train really hard, build up your social media presence & you might have a shot at making it as a professional athlete. Whilst this is true, it doesn't mean it's easy. For the majority it simply doesn't happen & for the few that are making it as professional athletes, the road is not a smooth one. Sponsors are few and far between and finding a sponsor within our community that can financially support you is incredibly hard. To be completely honest, Motus is not yet able to properly support these guys financially, and personally, that kills me.
So why did I pay for the trip? Yes it may have been the trip of a lifetime for everyone involved, but why spend all that money on something that really doesn't have that much financial return?
To create a sense of hope.
To provide the reassurance for someone like Robbie who just placed 4th at an international skill competition against the likes of Tim Champion & Jimmy Perreira that there is a future for him in this sport if he wants it bad enough. Robbie, Max, Luke & Kelan are all under 18, they're facing those life decisions about whether or not to go to college, university or whether to apply for a full-time job somewhere. These are decisions that while not inherently negative, can have huge impacts on the life of someone wanting to be a professional athlete. I just want to create options.
I've been doing Parkour for 14 years now and i've seen countless scenarios of wasted potential because the sport wasn't at a stage to support athletes who could have otherwise gone onto do great things but instead had to get a 9-5 to pay the bills. What I am trying to do is ensure that these guys don't have to face that challenge.
I strive towards growing The Motus Projects brand so that we can continue to support these athletes and also help grow Parkour to a level where more and more opportunities can exist for those who want to take a chance at it.
To everyone who supported us throughout this trip whether it be through housing us, feeding us or even just coming to say hi at a jam, thank you for making the last 5 weeks such an overwhelmingly positive experience.
Onwards & upwards.
Photo by @Somewhere.Somewhen