by Skipper Kim, founder of iskip.com
Imagine that you are walking on the sidewalk on a Friday night with a couple of friends. You’ve just had a nice dinner and one of the people you are with says, “Come on, let’s skip!” and leaps into the air and goes bounding down the street in front of you.
That’s exactly what happened to me shortly after I moved to San Francisco from Indiana. Without giving it a second thought, there I was bouncing down the street with pure abandon. I couldn’t’ believe how exhilarating it was! I hadn’t skipped since I was a kid! My friends and I were smiling and laughing as we reached our destination and I suddenly couldn’t stop thinking about skipping. When was the last time I had skipped? Why did I stop? Why don’t adults skip? I thought about how a new fitness crazes pop up all the time…why not skipping?
Two years later, at the height of the dot come gold rush, I decided to walk my talk/skip my skip and take my skipping public. That’s when iskip.com, my website that is dedicated to making the world a happier place one skip at a time was born. Unlike the majority of sites that were going up at the time, I didn’t even pretend to try to find a revenue model. My only goal was to share positive playful energy with the world and to encourage as many people as possible to rediscover skipping.
I started organizing group skips, mostly with friends in San Francisco, and before long the SF Chronicle caught wind of what I was up to and published a fabulous article called “She’d Like to Teach the World to Skip”. That kickstarted what is nothing short of a national media phenomenon with Time, Newsweek, CNN, USA Today and People Magazine all doing stories about the skipping movement. I even skipped my way onto the Donny & Marie Show and skipped and held hands with Donny Osmond! Talk about a childhood dream come true.
As it turned out, there were hundreds of people out there who had already been skipping for years…and so I found myself in the unlikely position of providing a portal where all of the skippers of the world could unite. Many called themselves “closet skippers” and thanked me for giving them permission to take their skipping pubic.
I recruited head skippers to organize group skipping events in their hometowns and there were as many as 70-cities…from Lima, Ohio to Manchester, England… where there was a head skipper helping to spread the skipping message.
As for me, I was a woman completely possessed. I even went as far as to quit my corporate job to follow my skipping dream. Unfortunately, that didn’t go nearly as well as I’d hoped at the time, but somehow through it all, I’m still skipping nearly ten years later.
These days, I’m working as a book publicist for New World Library, the publisher of The Power of Now…and am writing my own book about my skipping experience and all that goes with following your heart and living a dream. I also maintain a regular skipping blog through iskip.com.
My own skipping has become more of a personal spiritual practice than the evangelical mission it once was…but through it all, if anything, my resolve about skipping being one of the most powerful and underutilized tools we have at our disposal to make our own lives and the world us happier has gotten stronger as time has gone by.
Now, you might be wondering, “What exactly is so great about skipping?” Here are four of the MANY reasons why skipping might be good for you:
It’s great physical exercise. It burns twice as many calories as walking, has less impact on your joints than running does, and is a lot more fun! Some people skip for long distances, and others simply incorporate 10 or so skips at a time into their walking routine to raise their heart rate. It’s REALLY fun on the treadmill too. There’s nothing better than happily skipping to your heart’s content with two serious runners pounding away on either side of you!
It makes you feel like a kid again. Skipping automatically connects us with spontaneous, creative, free spirited childlike energy. It energizes our dreams and our imagination! It’s a super fun way to experience the many benefits of PLAY!
It makes the world a happier place. Skipping infuses your entire being and the word around you with positive energy! It makes people who see you happy too. An adult skipping down the street seems to be just unusual enough to snap most people out of their daily grind to take a moment to smile and feel good. It’s also a wonderful thing for parents to do with their kids. It shows them that adult life can actually be fun.
It connects you with the voice in your heart. Skipping gets your inner critic out of the way so your joyful, exuberant spirit is free to shine. To this day, after over ten years of skipping, my logical self still says things like, “You don’t want to skip here. You will annoy people with your joy…or people will think you are crazy.” And the voice in my heart says, “Yay! I love to skip, let’s go!” Every time we choose to follow that voice in our heart, it grows stronger and when we are connected to that voice, anything is possible!
Of course, skipping is something that is much better experienced than talked about. So I’d like to encourage you to contribute some positive energy to your immediate environment by skipping at least ten steps today! Go ahead. Get your skip on! What have you got to lose?
Kim Corbin is the world’s most vocal advocate for the body, mind, spirit benefits of adult skipping. She has been featured in USA Today, Time, People, and Newsweek Magazines. Visit her online at iskip.com.