We’ve recently launched an interview series aimed at digging a little deeper into how childhood exercise experiences shape the way people feel about exercise in later life. Part research, part entertainment. And also, we just like speaking to interesting people.
Our first interview is with Kathryn Rossiter, one of Cape Town’s most well-respected lifestyle, travel and family bloggers, whose authentic and (in my opinion) beautifully crafted personal blog, Becoming You, is a real labour of love.
I’ve chosen Kathryn to be our first interviewee because I know that her relationship with exercise hasn’t always been an easy one, and I also knew that her answers would be completely real and uncontrived, paving the way for future interviewee’s to feel okay about sharing openly too! (A side-effect of Fit Kids is that people feel like we have it all figured out and will judge them for not loving exercise, which is so not true!)
As educators we know that we’re playing a really important role in children’s lives, and we don’t take that responsibility lightly. We always hear about that geography teacher who put you off for life, or that art teacher who inspired you to push your boundaries and be the best that you could be.
If you think back to your own early childhood experiences with exercise, I can guarantee that an adult (or adults) in your life shaped the way you feel about it, and that means they played a role in how important exercise is to you today.
We’re convinced that through Fit Kids, we have the opportunity to shape the way the next generation feel about exercise, by showing them that exercise is something to do for yourself and to feel great about, no matter what your sporting ability might be.
HERE’S WHAT KATHRYN HAD TO SAY
Tell us about your relationship with exercise today. What kind of exercise do you do? Do you love it? Hate it? Somewhere in-between? How important is it to you?
I have a love hate relationship with exercise: mostly hate! I know I should love it more especially as so many people I know are really into it, but it just doesn’t feel like my “thing”. Most likely because I’m generally rather unfit. Maybe you love it more when you’re fit. It might also be because I just haven’t found the exercise I love? Last year I took up running, primarily for my health as I have high cholesterol. I was also hoping I’d loose some weight… that didn’t happen, even when I kept it up almost 3 x a week for the entire year! I felt cheated. If I’m going to exercise while hating it there’d better be some reward! Unfortunately (fortunately) I picked up a niggly injury in my foot and had to take a break… I’m considering going back but not amped about it. It doesn’t help that the friends I encouraged to join me are all much better than me. I just don’t think I’m a runner! But I know it’s important for my health to keep exercising, so this week I tried a ballet/ Pilates class. I’m hopeful. The first class was good fun, although my body ached everywhere the next day!
What is your earliest exercise memory?
I think it was sports day in Grade 1. I felt like vomiting! I hated the competitive side of sport and the pressure to perform in front of people. School sports never really gripped me. I wasn’t very “sporty” so always ended up in the social sides and those seemed like a waste of time. I suppose what I’m saying is that exercise has never seemed fun to me!? (I probably shouldn’t be saying that here!!)
Do you remember a specific teacher or coach who helped shape how you feel about exercise today?
No! My “social” team coaches hardly ever pitched and weren’t very invested. I do remember I loved watching cricket in high school so I approached a teacher about starting a girls cricket team and they said okay! I think it’s still running at my old high school, so that teacher made an impact by saying “yes”!
What is your opinion on the way schools and teachers present exercise to children?
Teacher coaches always seem to give the impression that sport coaching is a bit of a chore and not where they really want to be. I often sense that the teachers get such a hard time from the parents that they spend more time trying to make the parents happy with team selection and match results than actually investing into the kids in their teams. Often the A team in the school gets all the glory… private coaches, extra practices, more matches… while the rest of the kids are left to fend for themselves! (Rant over)
What do you want your children to feel or believe when it comes to exercise, fitness and sport?
I definitely don’t want them to feel like I do about exercise!!! I want them to love it and find sport fun and enjoyable. I hope they find a way of making it part of their lifestyle… and not a chore like me!
Subscribe for updates
No spam we promise – only our latest blogs, news & events