How the over 70s have embraced technology to continue their fitness sessions via zoom?

Level 4 Lockdown has forced me like many other personal trainers to change my business practice in order to survive. I have been astounded by how many of my over 60’s clients have embraced training via zoom despite many of them being unfamiliar with the technology. “It warms my heart that this demographic continue to be dedicated to their health and wellness at a time when it is more important than ever.”

Training via zoom has not been without its hiccups, but I anticipated this with a group of people that were not adept to using the technology. Some of the issues were around slow internet connection, audio issues and failing cameras and some slight confusion about how the software worked. But these clients were determined to make it work and maintain connection with the outside world during isolation. Jeff and Gillian say: “we will both be 72 next month and wanted to maintain the level of fitness and flexibility we’d achieved with Rachel, so were determined that we could do it. A new way using zoom. Go seniors”.

For one client learning to use video technology proved really useful as he was separated from his partner during lockdown and it provided him with the ability to keep in touch during the long isolation period.

There were a few other hitches to work around too. I had to make a detour from my normal instruction attire to ensure that I could be seen well by video when demonstrating an exercise. This was because my black workout pants did not blend well with the backdrop of my black couch. I also had to work around my Labrador Utah, my only companion for 6 weeks that occasionally decided he wanted to play with his duck toy during the session, or wanted to climb on me whilst I was supervising my clients via video. However, it seemed that my clients were delighted with the experience. Joelle says: “The zoom sessions are not only enjoyable they are effective and keep me focused during this time of isolation”.

I am very grateful for being able to maintain a portion of my clients during this tough period. I have found that some of my past clients are experiencing so much stress financially and mentally that they are not able to continue training at present. That is particularly tough when you can’t help the people that need it the most. But technology and my dedicated over 60’s has been a life saver for my business. Gabrielle says: “Thank goodness for Zoom a wonderful app that has allowed me to continue training twice weekly with my trainer during lockdown.”

If the alert level is lowered to level 2 next week I am looking forward to working with my clients face to face again, albeit from 1 metre away and with me donning a face mask. Things won’t be quite the same though, with the new normal being adopted. I will be unable to offer assisted stretching like I have done for the last 18 years and physical touch won’t be possible when they learn a new exercise. However, if I can still operate safely and my clients can continue to benefit from my expertise then that is a small price to pay.