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What does ‘fitness’ mean to you?

We all have our own ideas about what fitness is, how to achieve it, how significant it is in our lives and what motivates us to get fit. How fit we are and how we exercise differs from person to person. If you look at fitness as ‘fit for purpose’ then what is your purpose?  What are the important things in your life that you want to keep on doing? Is it enjoying the outdoors with your grandchildren; being able to travel; start a new hobby; or just doing the gardening without aches and pains?

Some people seem to stay fit through a generally healthy lifestyle without dedicated exercising; for others sports and exercise are part of everyday life. There are a number of organisations that help everyday women enjoy and stick with exercising. The original, founded over 80 years ago and still going strong, is the Fitness League. Here is how it all began:

Back in the 1930s there lived a remarkable woman, Mary Bagot Stack, who – despite being widowed young, suffering poor health and with a small child to raise –  advanced a compelling vision of improved health, fitness and independence for women. She recognised that the body needs to be brought back into physical balance to make movement comfortable, effortless and graceful. And she was determined to share her ideas with everyone, not just those with plenty of spare cash.

She worked untiringly to build the organisation that is now known as the Fitness League, and through it to teach a series of exercises that were easy to pick up, enjoyable to do and that deliver maximum results in the minimum amount of time. Her ideas have helped tens of thousands of women, with Fitness League classes helping them to stay healthy beyond their peers, regain more of the fitness they used to enjoy and take pride in their achievement over the years.

If you have not been active for a while, then Fitness League classes are a great option. The exercises and simple dance steps are progressive, so no matter what your level of fitness, you can start from there and improve. If you are already active, then the Bagot Stack technique helps to enhance your performance, highlighting good posture and how to keep it when you are on the move. At your local classes, you have the chance to meet your neighbours and make new friends too.

Fiona Jones

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