At this time of year, as we all look to ways to making ourselves healthier, inside and out, without cleaning out the last few schillings of our savings, it’s heartening to see one local father and son finding a formula that’s fun, family-orientated and, best of all, free.
Having started their campaign just over 50 days ago, Kilcoole pop Uladzimir and his 7-year-old son, Timofei, have been keeping an online record of their twice-daily skipping sessions – and its effects are plain to see this sunny Saturday morning.
Both Uladzimir (pronounced Vladimir) and Timofei (rhymes with the shampoo) are in rude health, as is the shy one of the family, mum Tatiana.
“More importantly, we have a lot of fun together doing this,” explains a clearly proud father. “Timofei and I are up together in the morning, and we do 50 skips together, then we hug, and laugh, and then do it all again when I get home from work that evening. It’s just a great feeling, and it has not only made us fitter, but it has brought us closer together. It’s like our secret little project…”
It’s a little project that isn’t so secret anymore, as their Skip And Smile campaign takes off onYouTube. With regular posts on the progress of their 100-day challenge, Timofei and Uladzimir have been skipping all over this fine county of ours, including, most recently, Glendalough.
“The benefits are three-fold,” explains Uladzimir. “There’s the health aspect, both physical and mental, there’s the recognition of setting out goals and achieving them, and then there’s the strengthening of that family bond, by doing something significant and fun together.”
With their Skip And Smile website offering updates, advice and even skipping ropes for sale – “any money raised goes to Wicklow charities that help children” – it would appear that this is smart idea definitely has legs.
“The great thing is, it’s free,” finishes Uladzimir. “So, trying Skip & Smile means you have nothing to lose, and so, so much to gain…”
Find out more about Skip And Smile on their website here, and see the mighty Timofei in action right about here.
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