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Wanting a better quality of life, I had a bilateral knee replacement (both knees at the same time) at a relatively young age. They had become damaged through osteo-arthritis (and this damage had probably been exacerbated, I realise now, through a couple of falls where one knee or the other had taken the brunt of the impact). I had therefore been losing mobility over several years. The treatment at Hereford County Hospital was very good, and after-care included as many ‘knee classes’ as I needed given by a team of physiotherapists.

As I regained mobility and confidence, one of the physiotherapists mentioned the ‘gym’ word as a way of gaining further improvements that the knee classes couldn’t address. Unfortunately, for me, going to a gym was too awful to contemplate; my experience of gyms was that they were intimidating, confidence-sapping, ‘excluding’, competitive, and aimed at sportspeople and body-builders. So, I muddled on for a year after my operation, gaining mobility but with my knees still swelling up, often needing to wear elastic compression supports, and being disappointed that I wasn’t making a better recovery.

It’s hard to explain to someone who feels at ease in them how assaulting of confidence and emotions the usual style of gym can be to a – let’s use a cliché, because it’s useful here – to a gym-phobic person.

A chance conversation with a very dear and very sporty friend, pointed me to Faultless Fitness, where she had been going because of sports-related injuries, and where she had been benefiting from their unintimidating, focussed and motivational approach. “But it’s a gym. And I’m not a sportsperson,” I said. “I know! Ring them,” she said.

So I did. And so began a transformational experience. Faultless Fitness is small in size, friendly in outlook, and quite unlike the gyms I had experienced (and fled from). And it gets results.

I have had twice-weekly training sessions with owner Steve Tannatt Nash for 10 months and the improvement has been excellent. As a side benefit, because the exercise doesn’t just focus on my knees, I’ve had a welcome gain in overall fitness. I now have toned muscles and feel rather trim! Because my mobility and confidence have improved, my quality of life has also improved.

 

– Jo Henshaw

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