This is a guest blog from SOSA Dance Fitness. You can find out more about them and meet all our members here.

What are your first thoughts when it comes to seated exercise? Slow…boring…just for older people?

Seated exercise should not be labelled under this generic thought process. What about those recovering from injury or surgery? What about young disabled people that are in wheelchairs? Is there an exercise class they can generally do without being singled out as different?

Well now they can with the imminent launch of Seated SOSA Dance Fitness. This fresh, fun, sassy new seated class pushes all of these generic labels out of the window.

Founded by Katy Barrow, owner of SOSA Dance Fitness, and developed by Sam James, the UK’s first disabled fitness presenter, Seated SOSA Dance Fitness has been created to be fully inclusive so that everyone can take part in SOSA Dance Fitness classes. With routines that are adaptable for all ages and degrees of ability and health conditions, making it suitable for seniors, exercise referrals and disabled participants, Seated SOSA Dance Fitness is an authentic International dance fitness programme with a cross genre approach.

The most unique thing about Seated SOSA Dance Fitness, is that it incorporates authentic international dance moves so you actually gain a skill for life as well as keeping fit.

But why seated SOSA? The reasons are numerous and the benefits stretch across many audiences. Physical activity is incredibly beneficial for older adults to help to reduce the impact of illness and chronic disease, prevent memory loss and cognitive decline, and enhance mobility, flexibility and balance. A seated class makes dance accessible to them, meaning they can be safe whilst being active.

In today’s society only 17% of disabled people take part in any kind of physical activity. There is also a rise in the need for various low impact classes for exercise referral participants and this is the perfect class for those recovering from a serious or life threatening condition. Knowing that accessibility is a big issue, Katy and Sam worked hard to create a product that would meet the needs of a wide audience.

Exercise has been seen to help both older adults and people with disabilities. It can improve their conditions and help them lead a more independent life, provide much needed social interaction and help improve confidence.

Sam trained with InstructAbility four years ago and has gone on to try and make the fitness industry, especially group exercise classes, more adaptable so they attract more disabled clients. She has now presented Seated SOSA Dance Fitness sessions at many events including WDSA (Wheelchair Dance Sport Association) Inclusive Dance Festival, Leisure Industry Week, Move Fit, The International Fitness Showcase, and Project Mayhem events, where the feedback about the programme has been incredible. Sam James has also recently been nominated as a Finalist for the UK Active 2017 ‘Spirit of Flame’ Award for her outstanding contribution to inspiring more people to be more active, more often.

“Seated SOSA is amazing. So refreshing to take part in a seated and fun exercise class as I struggle to keep up with leg movements. Sam James was wonderful and for this programme to be developed by someone who knows what it’s like to struggle with movement makes this class even more special” – Claire Wheatley

After a recent knee injury I struggled getting back into fitness, I tried out Seated SOSA at a recent event and was absolutely hooked. There was a fantastic atmosphere, great music and the instructor was simply incredible. It uses easy to follow steps and allows you to modify moves to suit your needs. Highly recommended and I’m looking at starting up a local class when I’m fully recovered” – Michelle Rose

Katy Barrow, Founder & Creative Director, said “We are absolutely honoured to be part of Aspire’s InstructAbility demonstration at Elevate at London ExCel this Weds 10th May at 2pm, where you can join Sam to see how Seated SOSA can be accessible to all levels of ability.”

You can find out more about Seated SOSA here.

Guest blogs are written by our member organisations and are not necessarily representative of the views and opinions of EMD UK.