Hundred-Year-Old Excercise for Shoulders and Back

16-year-old Helena Muffly wrote exactly 100 years ago today: 

Friday, October 6, 1911: Went over some of my studies tonight in order to learn what I don’t know. Exams are approaching. Dear me.Her middle-aged granddaughter’s comments 100 years later:

Grandma sounds really worried about the exams. Maybe she did some exercises to relieve stress.  Here’s one from a 1911 book:

Shoulder and Back Exercise

First Position (Fig. 40)—Stand erect, with the feet together, and both arms extended on a plane with the should, so that in the first position the left arm is extended directly in front of the body and the right arm on the same plane directly behind the body. The arms must be held rigidly on the same plane.

Second Position (Fig. 41)—by a circular movement, the position of the left arm is assumed by the right, and vice versa. During the entire movement the feet must be kept firmly planted on the floor, pivoting at the hips only, while making the continuous circular movement of the arms.

Personal Hygiene and Physical Training for Women (1911) by Anna Galbraith

3 Responses

  1. Haha…for some reason these exercises seem like something that would be taught in a pilates class today..

  2. […] Hundred-year-old Exercise for Shoulders and Back […]

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