‘It’s all in the game’ series continues and this time its about ‘skipping’. Skipping may not be a game per se but what’s in a name or term for a child? Anything that involves loads of fun and energy is interesting and irresistible!
Kids have always amazed me – their curiosity, readiness to explore, utter inability to wait, will to win and will to forgive … some skills there certainly I would like to relearn and retain now! They’re quite competent in maneuvering small and large screens expertly – that’s absolutely admirable but in the process they shouldn’t go unawares of the ways of maneuvering physical body!
It’s my association and experience with kids and adolescents at two different institutions in the recent past that changed my perception on activities, games and their varying impacts on human body, mind and cognitive skills and this series is a result of the same!
Kids start by imitating and learn by exploring -whether it be handling gadgets, playing games or exploring nature ………….it all starts with us! So let’s start
Skipping is a simple activity but it plainly exhibits one’s power to fight against gravity and kids literally love this anti-gravity movement.
I remember those school days(of ’80’s) when girls smuggled in their skipping ropes to school just to enjoy the fun at break hours. Some of them had more than a pair at home and they brought it all to share(with pride no doubt)! They jumped, not just for the feel and fun, but to challenge everyone to beat scores. It may be a solo performance or a group activity – jumping the rope together emphasized understanding and unity between friends! Ability to keep count and count speedily were matters of some concern but what mattered most was – fun, entertainment and happiness!
For us jumping the rope and skipping the rope meant the same and we did it either ways as per will. (Personally, I bettered at jumping then but now I prefer skipping-I keep losing breath while jumping now!)
As a child, this game had made me reach my ‘highs’ and ‘feel light’. I was surprised when I found my friends had failed to introduce these activities to kids. It wasn’t intentional -it’s just that they forgot! These games are less charming now! Besides, just like me, they too were unaware of the positives! They were trying hard and spending more to keep their kids engaged! I gifted skipping rope and introduced different games. Those happy faces make me happy in turn and …yes, I too have my bit of fun and energizing exhaustion with them! Kids love anything fun, they get bored easily and gotta give vent to their energy!
And now we get to the benefits of Skipping. This is for all those who value ‘knowledge’ – I appreciate that and here we go! I’m not a professional and ‘ve sought professional help to give a fair picture.
* Prerequisites for skipping – a child should be able to stand, walk, hop & jump with good balance. Any child with these prerequisites (above 3-4 years of age) can be encouraged to do skipping.
Precaution: It is advised that children with heart problem should be allowed to do this activity only under doctor’s advice and therapeutic supervision.
Therapeutic benefits and precautions have been compiled under guidance of Mrs.Nirmala Solanky Venkateswaran, Occupational Therapist, who has been serving kids and adults for over 55 years. She needs no introduction to those who have read the earlier parts of ‘It’s all in the game‘.
Besides fun, skipping helps in burning calories too – it’s a good stay fit exercise. So don’t hesitate…. gear up and get your skipping rope today – not just for kids!!