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In today’s episode, Rajan travels to the USA to meet with Rafe Kelley, one of the first parkour/free runners in the country.

The conversation takes a dive into nature and looks at the human disconnect between reading the landscape, evolving our movement and being more settled in who we are. They also discuss what we should all be doing as we get older in order to remain healthy, mobile and connected.

Today’s episode is a true back-to-nature call and a life lesson for us all to be reminded of the resilience within.

How do you feel you can bring more mobility into your lives? Share your comments below.

If you like what we do, want to share a story, or support our work, please visit

About Rafe Kelley:
Natural Movement has been the key theme in his life since childhood. He was raised at the end of a dirt road surrounded by forest. It was in those woods where he found solace from the stresses of school as a child with ADHD and Dyslexia.

When he was 8 years old, a mentor came into his life and took on his education. He saw in him a fierce need for natural movement and gave him room to express it. He roughhoused with him daily and allowed him to roam the woods for hours every day, which allowed him to overcome his disabilities so that by the time he turned 9, he was reading The Iliad and The Odyssey to himself. And by 13, he was actively studying anthropology and evolutionary biology which he would go on to study in college.

At 6 years old, he started studying martial arts. His studies lasted through his teen and adult years, and included:
• Tang Soo Do
• Aikido
• Kung Fu
• KickBoxing
• Muay Thai
• Capoeira
• Systema

At 15, he began studying gymnastics. And at 23, he discovered parkour, becoming one of the first parkour teachers in North America and co-founding Parkour Visions, one of the most highly respected parkour teaching institutions in the world.

The discovery of parkour for him though immediately led to a bigger question.

Parkour was like taking a layer off gymnastics and finding something deeper, more primal, something more heroic, but it felt like there was still something missing.

Almost from the moment he encountered parkour, he dreamed of creating a method that covered the full spectrum of primal human movements. The skills of the heroes of old. The capacity for natural movement that he had read about in tribal peoples all around the world in his ethnographic readings. He started to ask what it meant to move like a human.

Rafe reinvested himself in martial arts training and weightlifting. Then he encountered the work of George Herbert and Le Methode Naturelle and took his practice into the natural world. Climbing trees, lifting logs, swimming, and carrying rocks underwater.

He chose to focus on parkour as the primary discipline to base his approach on and moved to Seattle to co-found Parkour Visions, the West Coast’s first parkour gym.

Over the 5 years he was the head instructor at Parkour Visions and the ideas behind Evolve Move Play continued to gestate. He started offering martial arts classes through the gym and he slowly migrated to training primarily in nature again. Rafe took an interest in other movement cultures, and in 2013, it was time to walk away from the parkour gym and invest fully in Evolve Move Play.

Since then he has traveled the world teaching, studying, immersing himself in natural movement training and research.

His students have included world-class parkour athletes, MMA fighters, and untrained grandmothers, and the common theme in their responses to his approach is that it is life-changing on many levels.

His passion is to help people build the physical practice that will help make them the strongest, most adaptable and resilient version of themselves in movement and in life.

About the Global Indian Series:
My name is Rajan Nazran Chief explorer for the Global Indian Series, the official platform for people of Indian origin (PIO), because let’s face it, we are everywhere!

For almost 15 years we have travelled across the globe covering 58 countries to date whilst exploring the kaleidoscope of our remarkable 50 shades of brown community.

Voyaging to the edges of the Amazon, facing Ebola in West Africa, being held hostage in Eastern Europe, tapping rubber in Malaysia, drinking chai with Heads of State and sharing laughter with local fishermen – I have been there, looking for us!

Our purpose is simple, to build a living encyclopaedia of the human experience of the community and a safe mooring ground for open discussions, whether you are an NRI, Indian Diaspora, person of Indian origin (PIO) or a fan of South Asian anthropology, what we do is bring people and communities together.

We do this by plunging into the human experience of being a person of Indian origin (PIO), taking a second look at the countries we now call home and tackling the conversations we need to know more about.

Through our range of award-winning original content (print, podcasts, events and TV) and fascinating discussions, our impactful stories and platforms have spearheaded national and international conversations that have brought people together.

Our work is featured in global brands including The Indian Express through to the CNBC network.

How to get involved:

Interested in getting involved in building the world’s largest living encyclopedia on the community? Whether you want to become a patron, buy us a chai in a new location or have your story shown, simply get in touch via our website, we would love to hear from you.

Social media:
You can reach Rajan via

Instagram: @rajannazran

Linkedin: RajanNazran

YouTube: Global Indian Series

Special thank you to TAIZU for the music

Episode: 75

Presenter – Rajan Nazran

Producer –Global Indian Series/NazranRoth

Guest – Rafe Kelley

Art Design – Vanisha Patel

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Support change: A little favour to ask-We believe true freedom is to be able to act without fear or favour and that identity is not a “brand” to be abused, politicized, or reduced for personal gain. As Global Indians, the need to work together is greater now than ever before.  If we want to see real change, we need to create a better society for all, tackle injustice and plunge into the many aspects of what the human experience truly offers.The Global Indian Series has been built to be a platform of integrity, fairness and to remain fiercely independent of political influence. We are the first in the world to connect with every echelon of society with all human voices being treated equally.  We are the first to have travelled physically to locations far and wide, often putting our own lives on the line to bring forward stories that deserve to be told.  Whether it’s through our Podcast that delves into the human experience behind identity, our articles and features that cover key events we need to know, or live based events that tackle topical discussions, we have been there to support a better community and planet.Despite the high costs and time needed to maintain our work, we continue, because we know our work has helped more people understand what is happening within the communities across our planet, why it matters, and how, together, we can demand progress.  We challenge head-on, the silent divisions that have crept into our collective consciousness and how to tackle key issues that often go neglected in mainstream media.How you can help:Please share our work: By collaborating with others who share our values, our combined voices make change, with many more becoming inspired to take meaningful action.Subscribe to the platform:Many from across our community have decided to subscribe to our platform. It helps us grow which in turns attracts like-minded supporters. If you have not already, we would appreciate you subscribing to our newsletters and following our social media accounts. It is free and supports our journey.


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