Column 6 - Skip Rather than Jog

Original publication date: October 12, 1983

How many of us vowed that this Thanksgiving we would eat only a small amount so we would feel much better afterward? Most of us. How many of us kept this promise? I for one didn't.

The worst thing about eating a big meal is the hungry feeling we have for about three days later. Our stomachs have stretched a little and it takes more food to satisfy our hunger. It also takes a lot of discipline to cut back to normal proportions.

We need to do something to take our minds off food.

Apples, peaches, pears, and plums, tell me when your birthday comes ... January, February, March, April ... Remember that rhyme? That's how I spent my recess time in public school. I skipped. I skipped with a single rope, double rope with lots of kids, double dutch, and hardest of all, double dolly. Skipping was a lot of fun and everyone participated in it.

I've recently rediscovered sklppmg for want of an alternative to jogging. I find jogging a chore to do alone and I have to jog for a long time to get sufficient aerobic exercise. I'd rather spend my time on other things.

Skipping, if done at a good pace, can provide your heart with the needed exercise in a shorter period of time. Five minutes of brisk skipping compares to jogging for four miles at 10 minutes to each mile. I'd rather spend five minutes exercising than 40 minutes.

Skipping alone eliminates the worry and dangers of Jogging alone at night. You don't have to go out in the rain, the freezing cold, or on snowy blowy days. You don't have to get a babysitter if you have small children at home, when you want to skip.

Skipping can be done in the warmth and comfort of your own home at any time. If you live in a newer house you probably have sufficient ceiling height in your basement to skip. If you live in an older house you would have sufficient ceiling height on the main floor or upstairs to skip.

You'll need a pair of runnmg shoes. Both court shoes (tennis shoes) and jogging shoes are good. You'll also need a skipping rope. Don't bother with your daughter's rope, it's probably far too short. Cut a piece of rope or buy one. Make sure that when you stand on the middle of the rope, the handles come up to your armpits.

Move the furniture, stretch your body, particularly your feet and legs, and start skipping.

It's a lot harder than you remember I'm sure. Here are some helpful hints. Bend your knees slightly and use your wrists to turn the rope. Keep your legs in front of you, never behind. That's how the rope gets tangled around your ankles. Don't jump too high, only about an inch off the floor. Jump on the balls of your feet and "think light."

Start by skipping a few minutes, resting a few minutes, then skipping again. When you've had enough, don't stand still as this will pool blood away from the heart. Blood pooling in the lower extremities may drop your blood pressure and result in faintness. Walk around for a few minutes.

To make the most of skipping, tune in your favorite radio station or put on a record and skip to the beat. After a few weeks you'll be able to go to the schoolyard and keep up with the best of them.

Copyright 2020 K.L. McCluskey, all rights reserved.