Kgomotso Phooko
2 minute read
6 May 2022
5:58 pm

Pretoria man and his rope jump into world record books

Kgomotso Phooko

The current 8-hour record is set at 70,030 skips and Heijns claimed the tittle with 71,185 skips.

SD Heijns poses for a photograph after successfully completing 71 185 skips in his attempt to break the Guinness World Record, 6 May 2022, at Sun International’s Maslow Time Square Hotel in Pretoria. His attempt was successful but now has to be verified by Guinness World Record officials. Picture: Michel Bega

A South African kickboxing champion has broken the Guinness World Record for rope skipping, with 71,185 skips in 8 hours.

Servaas Daniel Heijns broke the record on Friday at the Maslow Sun International Hotel, surrounded by family and supporters.

The Sports Science lab (SSL) was present to monitor the number of skips for accuracy.

The current Guinness World Record of 8 hours with 70,030 skips is held by the United States’ Sella Rosa Rega from Bioceville, New York, who set the mark on 30 March 2019.

Heijns has now claimed the title but is waiting for the World Guinness Records to verify and stamp it.

An elated Heijns expressed how amazing he feels after breaking the record.

“I feel amazing, it’s an honour to be able to say I broke it, with all the preparations and everyone involved. I am very happy to say we did it,” said Heijns.

The eight-time SA kickboxer champion had inspiration to test the ability of his body and decided to research and find out who holds the world’s rope skipping record and decided it would be his next achievement.

“I wanted to challenge myself in a different way, to push the limits of the human body to also inspire South Africans because everything is outside the country,” Heijns added.

skipping world record
SD Heijns poses for a photograph after successfully completing 71 185 skips in his attempt to break the Guinness World Record, 6 May 2022, at Sun International’s Maslow Time Square Hotel in Pretoria. His attempt was successful but now has to be verified by Guinness World Record officials. Picture: Michel Bega

Skipping has always been part of his exercise when he was kickboxing. He began doing 1-2 skipping sessions a day, four times a week, while also training at the Sports Science lab in Loftus.

He already aims to break the 12-hour skipping record which is set at 100,464 skips.

Marius Bloemhof, a Software Developer at SSL, present to monitor the number of skips, added that the record is unofficial at the moment because of a process with the Guinness world record.

“It’s unofficial, we’re going to submit all the data to Guinness, they have a process we have to go through. We are going to submit all the data which includes the video recording and electronic log files,” said Marius.

He said they did the registration process which is mandatory prior to the event, all that awaits is for the verification from the Guinness.

Heijns’ father admitted he felt anxious at first when he saw the current skipping record but had faith as he knew how resilient his son was.

Adriana remembers his son doing a skipping demonstration then during the drive and afterwards telling him he would check the current record.

“I said well go have a look. After a day he came to me and said ‘dad, this is the record and I’m gonna break it’. I said let’s do it,” Adriana said.

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