Given these disorientating, driftwood days of self-isolation, it would be perfectly understandable if a few of us started going a little peanuts.
Especially those younger Greystonians among us, bursting with enough energy and imagination to power Hogwarths and Willy Wonka’s Chocolate Factory combined.
Which is why Fitkidz jumped, hopped and skipped online, with free everyday activities, challenges, fun games and beyond. With her years of experience in not only fitness training but also psychology, well-being, meditation, yoga and the importance of having fun, Heidi Ellen Love got to work in converting a room in her Charlesland home into the new Fitkidz studio.
“I wanted to keep in touch with all these wonderful kids I had been working with,” she explains. “And so, a new adventure began. We’re all in this little adventure together, and seeing the response – and all the incredible achievements – day by day, it’s also helped me forget we’re all in lockdown…”
A bit like having Picasso paint your kitchen, Ms Love (and, yep, that is her real name) brings a ridiculous amount to the Fitkidz table.
Here’s a woman who studied Tibetan meditation with the Dalai Lama in northern India. Who, whilst working for the Cork Mental Health Assocation, wrote and directed a highly-acclaimed play tackling youth mental health issues in higher education. Who worked as an actor, stuntwoman and props dresser for over 15 years in TV, film and theatre, including the likes of Vikings and Penny Dreadful (getting an Emmy nod for the latter). Who taught scuba-diving in Australia for a year. Who qualified as a fully-trained personal trainer and children’s fitness instructor.
We could go on, but, Heidi insisted we stop there. Suffice the say, the woman knows what she’s doing when it comes to promoting both physical and mental health.
“I was actually uncertain in the beginning whether Zoom networking was a positive platform for children,” she explains, “but, after the second week of lockdown, I began to see how my classes were creating structure in kids’ lives.
“I also noticed that kids were becoming more confident in classes and interacting like never before…”
It’s all about, says Heidi, “providing support, education and entertainment“, her onlineFitkidz classesbeing aimed primarily at children between 4 and 12. And those children have plenty of different classes to choose from, including [deep breath] Zoom Artistic Camps, Graffiti Camps, Confidence Courses, Art Therapy, Bendy Bears (for yoga and pilates), Dare Devils (self-defense), Boxing Bandits (cardio), Leaping Lizards (circuit training), Disco Dragons (dance and drum fitness), Jumping Jaguars (box jumping), Pumping Penguins (strength training) and Naughty Ninjas (kickboxing). To name but 11.