I was able to go back to the leisure centre yesterday after a week off. I went straight into the aqua-fit class and have to say that I managed it quite well and am noticing that, despite a week off, my problematic right knee is becoming more flexible. Getting out of the pool and walking to the changing rooms is a whole other kettle of fish however.
It obviously helps to know which moves the instructor focuses on so that you can get into the exercise without wasting time trying to figure out what to do. I'm always stumped by the ones that make you do things unnaturally, like tapping head and rubbing tummy scenario. There really is no time to work it out though before she moves onto the next exercise and I generally end up randomly flinging my limbs about in the water.
Yesterday her favourite shriek was 'knees to nipples ladies, knees to nipples'. (Gentlemen, look away now if you don't want to be sick) I did try to suggest that doing it the other way around (ie; nipples to knees) would be so much easier given that gravity had a head start in that direction but she was unimpressed. - Also, what about the problem of getting passed your stomach. These things are a big issue to those of us in the know.
I can't say that I have noticed any particular changes in my shape in the short time that I have been going to exercise classes, they are pretty mild after all, but what I have noticed is that I am gradually developing more confidence in my physical self.
I think a couple of nasty falls and trips to A&E for dislocated fingers a few months ago increased my anxiety about my balance and stability and I have overcompensated since then. The resulting tension about my movement has then made me more likely to develop muscle pain and stiff joints. Just having those muscles loosened has helped to make me less 'tottering' already. I now can't wait to have my left ankle done as I feel that it is going to make such an improvement to my gait and posture that my spine and right knee will improve also.
I won't ever be able to fully return to my active self unless I become bionic as there is now permanent damage to many of my joints but I am seeing a more positive outlook already both physically and mentally. It really does pay to remain as active as possible. I am evidence that you can pick it up again after years of inactivity and that you don't need to go running on a treadmill or lifting weights - just simple movements from your chair or splashing about in the pool makes a difference.