Pilates with PAAMOA
Mats on the ground, soft ball in hand a group of ladies over the age of 55 start their Pilates and functional patterns class with Simone Redman in earnest.
The class is one of the many classes provided by Physical Activities Association for Mature Older Adults (PAAMOA).
“Our classes are so our older citizens, including frail adults, can engage in managed physical activities in a safe environment. These classes are designed to have a positive impact on their mobility, health and independent living,” states the association.
The members range from 55 to 95 years old, and all the instructors are fully qualified not just in the activity but also qualified to teach mature adults.
Despite not attaining that age yet the instructor and association members allowed the Chronicle to take part in the class.
Starting off with some gentle easy movements with a Pilates ball while standing on the mat Ms Redman explained each movement ensuring everyone was doing it correctly.
From there the movements became a little trickier with lifting a leg while tilting your hip a certain way to squats with the ball stretched out in front of you.
Drills up and down the basketball court focusing on every limb and the position of your hips required a lot of concentration and practice.
Ms Redman monitored everyone and had one person in particular who didn’t have the coordination that her fellow participants had. That person was me. The focus required to ensure your body had to be held and move in a certain way was at times harder than running round the Rock. However, both Ms Redman and the other ladies were patience and helped correct me whenever they needed to.
This goes to show that no matter how young or ‘fit’ you think you might be everyone can learn and benefit from functional patterns.
One of my fellow participants was Paddy Canepa.
“This has definitely helped me because I have been doing it for a few years and we have become aware of the way we are supposed to walk and supposed to move,” she said.
“Actually when I go around sometimes and I see some people I say ‘oh they are not walking properly, they are not doing it properly’, so it a very good thing for is to be taught how to move properly,” she added.
She also noted that she used to sit back on her haunches and she found that difficult on her left leg but now she finds it easier as there are so many difference movements they do that improve that.
“It’s invaluable to me and as long as we can keep on going it is the main thing,” she said.
“Lockdown was difficult, but I personally had been able to continue because they have given us private classes through Facebook as well. I haven’t stopped I have just continued.”
“It is also nice just to get together again and see the faces which is what we are used to.”
PAAMOA currently has over 450 members. The membership is free for those over 60’s and only requires a health screening form to be completed.
In person classes are started again in the first week of October, visit www.paamoa.gi for more details.
PAAMOA will be offering Pilates, Aqua activities and Mindful Movement together with a GSLA programme of free activities for the over 55’s.
Their website paamoa.gi has been updated for 2021 and PAAMOA now have an email address firstname.lastname@example.org for general enquiries.