Recently, TRS Teacher, Georgina, worked with a Friendly Faces of Kent group in Sittingbourne. The group have been on a journey together and had a wonderful time getting to know each other. Here is Georgina’s blog post about it.
Written by Georgina, Active Armchairs Facilitator
When 7-8 ladies from the Friendly Faces group, (held in a Methodist Church,) took part in a four week Active Armchairs taster session, I was a little nervous when I entered the room for the first time. I wasn’t sure if I would hold their interest.
I adapted the warm up to include some Pilates moves, and made some conversation with the ladies in between the dances that followed. As the ladies began to move, their faces broke into smiles and some started to sing along to the lyrics. Their physical demeanour started to loosen and they started to share stories about favourite memories.
By the end of the session, when a cool down was carried out to the song What a Wonderful World by Louis Armstrong, a couple of the ladies were in tears. The song had been a favourite of a lady who had been a good friend to them, and they spent time discussing what they remembered about her.
I was surprised and delighted at how the power of music and dance can break down barriers and help us to find a common ground which evokes feelings of nostalgia, sadness and joy, all in a short space of time as we recollect things that our important to us through the movement and sounds that an Active Armchairs session can facilitate.
I made a mental note to never again go into a session with preconceived notions of what will be well received and what won’t, but to try to go more with the flow and be in tune to what each individual in the group is responding to as the session unfurls.
I loved each session that took place with the ladies from the Friendly Faces group. It was a joy to see them opening up, relaxing and connecting with each other and with shared special memories, as well as witnessing their playfulness, something that touched both myself and them.