The future has just arrived at my gym. They have installed Power Plates and the good news is that we can all...
Get the perfect, healthy body for summer at the touch of a button, with the good vibrations of the award-winning Power Plate Next Generation. (I see at John Lewis you get a free one year’s guarantee thrown in with your purchase costing £6,995 – that’s good isn’t it? )
So it has come to this. We are all so busy, but all also so anxious to keep in shape – that for a mere 10 minutes, three times a week, we can have – ‘At the touch of a button’ the perfect healthy body we all crave. This is most definitely the invention for our times.
My grandmother didn’t need to work out to keep her muscles toned – wringing out the washing on a mangle would have seen to that on its own, never mind the hoeing and digging involved in growing all her own vegetables. Granddad's manual work kept him in shape. My mum didn’t need a gym to keep fit – like her parents before her she walked or cycled everywhere.
When I was a child I was always active – out all day over the fields and far away, or swimming, or competing in epic fifteen set matches of tennis played against the house wall, or playing French skipping with ropes out of elastic bands....it did probably help that children’s TV was only on for an hour a day. As a teenager though the rot set in as I was forced to take part in games lessons that I hated...gymnastics, hockey, athletics and worst of all - cross country running - rather than netball, dancing or rounders which I had always enjoyed. I started missing games lessons and by the time an aerobics class started up in my village I did not even possess a pair of trainers having done no exercise for something like 15 years.
Neighbours from both sides of my house were determined I was going to go with them to that first aerobics class. I didn’t even know what aerobics involved and had to be frog marched down to the village hall, but no one was more shocked than I was to find out that not only did I really enjoy it, but I was good at it too. It was totally undeserved, but it seemed I was fit and liked exercising. This led me to make a new discovery. Whilst I was not looking these things called leisure centres had sprung up, and people were paying good money to use gym facilities. Before long, I became one of them. These were obviously the answer to the increasing sedentary life style we had all been busy adopting – labour saving household devices, massive supermarkets which meant we no longer had to grow our own vegetables, desk bound jobs, and cars which took us everywhere, even when it would often be almost as quick to walk. So they had to invent cycling machines, treadmills, steppers etc to basically do for us what previous generations were doing naturally every day of their lives. Oh yes, and as we no longer carried heavy shopping bags any further than from the trolley to the car boot - they invented machines with weights attached for us.
Now though, it seems we are so pushed for time that we need to tone up faster, and we are so lazy we want to do it the easy way and yes, I will be trying the Power Plates for size with that promise of perfection at the touch of a button. It does actually say in the publicity material that "You don't even need to exert yourself." I do wonder though what other aspect of our lives is due for the invention of a machine to give us instant pleasurable results. Maybe the future as portrayed in Woody Allen's The Sleeper is not so far away after all, but do you know, I quite like my sex life as it is without the undoubted convenience of the orgasmatron.
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