I am now 87, and a good deal slower and more wobbly than I was when I began this blog in 2005. Unfortunately, I have taken to falling over rather a lot in the last year or two, with a couple of tumbles which pretty much put me out of action, for a chunk of time I didn't want to miss. My GP has referred me to a local falls clinic, and today I went to be assessed for which of two exercise classes would be suitable for me.
I arrived rather early and found the hall empty, but shortly a young man came in who had ‘INSTRUCTOR’ in large letters across his chest. I thought this looked promising, but was a bit confused by the fact that he was not only lean and muscled, but also long-haired, and covered from shoulders to fingertips in some pretty intricate and stylish tattoos.
I had expected, for assessment purposes, a nurse- or doctor-like figure, but this was more in the way of the ’personal trainer’ type, that causes such havoc in much of popular drama and fiction. Surely he wasn’t going to be looking after me, and the other rather wobbly looking lady who had joined me in the hall? But he was....
After I had filled in a form about how much I feared falling in various circumstances, he sat me down and began to ask me questions. He was gentle and easy to talk to, and I ceased to find him inappropriate to my situation. He then asked me to stand up, and proceeded to test my balance and flexibilty by putting me through various positions and moves. (No matter how I word it that sounds suspect - he never laid a hand on me). Suddenly I heard him say “Good Judith, nice hip movement” and I began to wonder if I was in an April Fool’s fantasy. It was all I could do not to burst into giggles.
I came home feeling rather jolly and lighthearted, instead of the awkward and anxious person who had set out.