This is part 1 of our interview with Martin Kirwan, a former semi-pro soccer player, who hails from Ireland. Martin has 10 grandchildren and a great grandson. How many great grandparents do you know that are jumping rope?
How’s your cholesterol now that you’ve been upping the intensity of your workouts?
The reason for me training again is because my cholesterol was 8.2, which is serious. 3 to 4 is considered acceptable. I hadn’t done any training of any sort for 18 years, so if I may say so myself I am surprised at my level of fitness. I started off with a 5-minute run around the block and I was absolutely knackered after it, but I gradually built it up and then moved on to The Sean T Insanity program. My 38-year-old son tried it and lasted 12 minutes. He was mortified that his old man could do the complete program. Anyway, I just had my cholesterol retested an it is down from 8.2 to 4. My doctor was very impressed that I accomplished this without any medication. He said for a man of my age to achieve this is impressive indeed. He told me to keep up the good work. I told him “I’ll just keep jumping.”
Have you made any modifications to your diet? If so, which ones?
Because of my soccer background, I know how important my diet is for results, so just some basic modifications where I never drink fizzy drinks at all, cut down on the chocolate, and take plenty of vitamins, and protein drinks.
You mentioned that you played semi-pro soccer for many years. Did you do any skipping for fitness back then?
In my time we usually stuck to the fitness routines for our particular sport, however I had a friend who was a boxer and every time we would have a drink together he always brought this up that skipping was great for the cardiovascular system and for coordination, but his advice always fell on deaf ears.
Would you recommend rope jumping to today’s youth soccer players? If so, why?
My 7-year-old grandson is doing very well at the soccer academy. He’s scored 29 goals in 16 matches, and all from midfield, so when he turns 8 in October I am going to introduce him to some basic jump rope techniques to improve his balance, speed, and coordination.