A Perth sports fanatic is hoping his new book will see the fun come out of the pages and the kids will kick in too.
With a character combining the expertise of Indiana Jones and James Bond and a sports ace, Sandy Storm and the Crown Jewels is a children’s story written by Alasdair Mackintosh, sports and fitness professor at Dundee College.
The illustrations were provided by her friend, Nicola Massie, also from Fair City and a former student of Dundee College.
The first job, due out before Christmas, took around a year to put together and was inspired by Oliver, Alasdair’s 17-month-old son.
He told the AP: âDuring the lockdown I found myself in front of my laptop and iPad and that’s where I got ideas for writing a book.
âI wanted to work on fitness, movement and the idea of ââusing your imagination, which is something that gets lost and the idea of ââsomeone sitting down with their child, going on an adventure with them to help people read books.
âIt’s been a learning curve for me and my illustrator, but there are three or four other stories I can work on from this. “
Alasdair was an avid reader and recalls, âI enjoyed reading a lot of adventure stories, including John Buchan’s 39 Stages.
âI would say the character in the book is a bit of a mix of James Bond and Indiana Jones.
âThese are children’s fitness story books.
âMy idea was to write a story and put exercises in it, to help kids aged five to nine get in shape.
âNicola and I are both based in Perth and are really passionate about making children more active, using their imaginations, building better family relationships and developing reading skills as well.
âWe believe that this new genre of books could be a positive step forward in trying to solve a number of social problems.
“Nicola wanted to add something to her portfolio, so that will help her.
âI have worked in the health and fitness industry for over a decade, with children, adults, athletes and sports teams. “
During this period, Alasdair obtained a variety of teaching qualifications, including a Postgraduate Diploma in Education, Honors Bachelor of Sport and Exercise, Bachelor of Leisure Management, Doctorate in Sports Coaching and Development, and several qualifications in Sport and Exercise. fitness and sport.
Alasdair added, âThrough teaching, training and participating in sport and fitness, I have gained a great understanding of the importance of creating a world of adventure and imagination in children. “
Being able to tie these two concepts together gave him the opportunity to create this new kind of live action children’s book.
These âexercise adventuresâ allow children to follow the exciting story and at the same time perform the exercise routines in their home, garden or other safe place.
âThe important additional feature of these books is the potential to develop an online community,â he added.
âHere, book owners can discuss adventure stories with other readers; learning progress and adaptations to exercises and exchange of thoughts and feelings. They can also post photos and videos, share arts and crafts ideas, and develop games and contests.
âI also had to do a lot more research than I thought and learned while working on the book.
âIt started off randomly with the character who was a golfer and then turned into a secret agent.
“I hope Oliver has something to be proud of when he’s a little older and can read.”