Retro Exercise Classes Through The Decades: 30s To 80s (VIDEO)

TV Carnage

As you struggle towards the end of January, and very possibly your annual gym-going journey, we thought we'd remind you how good exercise lovers have it in 2014.

Yes, we might be stuck with baffling fitness terminology such as piloxing, HIIT and Wii Fit U, but at least we aren't forced to wear gym knickers. Or encouraged to apply make-up before getting hot and sweaty.

We raided You Tube for examples of exercise styles throughout the 20th century that prove you should count your blessings next time you're stuck choosing between yoga and pilates.


Here's a clip from the early thirties of women working out on machines designed to slim the waist line.

Note: We suspect that many of the machine (particularly the one that involves lying your pelvis over a whirring wheel) might be stimulating more than weight loss.


Watch these glamour girls work those upper bodies. As the commentator astutely points out: "Take it easy honey, the first 100 times are the hardest."


These fellas are doing their daily dose of rhythmic exercise, according to the narrator. But don't be fooled, he says. Sure, these guys are not professional, and they haven't had a lot of practise, but the exercises (such as swinging your arms and jumping, ahem) are really quite simple.


This short clip of a class of 60s women, emphasises the importance of stretching. And exercising in office heels.


The decade during which fitness went mainstream included the rise of bodybuilding. Take it away Arnie.


Words can't quite express the enthusiasm with which this presenter takes her jazzercise duties. She sings along to the music (although it's not clear whether she knows the singer isn't her boyfriend) and she's happy to talk to her thighs: "I just hear them squealing with delight".