Coronavirus: Man launches doorstep fitness classes so neighbours can keep fit during lockdown

Residents use everything from brooms to tins of baked beans as weights

Sarah Young
Wednesday 01 April 2020 09:59 BST
Journey through London's empty streets during coronavirus lockdown

A group of neighbours in London have been working out together on their doorsteps in a bid to keep fit and build community spirit amid the coronavirus lockdown.

The classes were launched by fitness enthusiast Simon Garner and are open to residents of all ages on his street in Kennington, South London.

Garner also created an Instagram account called On The Step to document the sessions, which sees his neighbours perform a range of exercises including aerobics.

“Crazy times call for kind actions with Simon's motivational and movement mornings,” the Instagram’s bio reads.

In one video shared on the account, the neighbours can be seen using brooms and tins of baked beans as weights alongside motivational captions such as “Safely grab your sweeping brushes and stretch” and “Get those beans up!!!”.

Elsewhere photos show the residents, young and old, stretching on their doorsteps with Garner sharing words of encouragement and reminding his neighbours to “Keep on your step and away from others”.

In another post, Garner described the sessions as “social distancing in a community that is growing”.

The classes have proved a hit with social media users as well as with the street’s local residents, with many praising Garner for keeping spirits high during times of uncertainty.

“This is amazing”, one person commented, while a second person wrote: “Leading the world in bringing a community together here in SMG. Bravo Simon, just fabulous (again!). X.”

Another person added: “How wonderful”, followed by a series of red heart emojis.

The workout sessions come at a time when UK residents have been asked to stay at home, except for a limited number of reasons including shopping for basic necessities, one exercise outing a day, for medical needs and travelling to and from work, but only if this is absolutely necessary.

The nationwide lockdown has brought out the spirit of community and camaraderie among many, with supermarkets introducing dedicated shopping hours for elderly and NHS workers, people offering to run errands for vulnerable neighbours and strangers delivering books from their own collections to anyone self-isolating.

Boris Johnson has not said how long the UK can expect to be under lockdown but has advised that the situation would be reviewed every three weeks.

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