We all have seen women with perfectly toned bodies and out-of-the-world beauty as cheerleaders. But have you heard of grannies cheerleading? Well, meet Japan Pom Pom. 

Japan is one of the most rapidly aging nations as almost 30 percent of its population is over the age of 65. Age is definitely not a number for these women. Dancing with bright and flashy outfits, the “Japan Pom Pom” is unique and not like any other ordinary squad. 

The members of the squad are between the ages of 60 to 89. The group is breaking all the ageist boundaries created by society which expects women to behave in a certain way. 

The Japanese Squad Of 70-Year-Old Dancers

A member from Japan Pom Pom putting on her sparkly shoes
Don’t call them grannies
For performances, the team wears sequinned, mini-skirted costumes.
They feature in government pamphlets about active seniors, appear periodically in TV reports, and perform in charity shows

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The group was founded twenty-six years ago by 89-year-old Fumie Takino. The cheer group originally started with five people, and it now has 17 active members.

They got inspiration from an overseas cheer squad composed of seniors. In the beginning, they did not like being called granny cheer dancers.

Members pose for a photograph

The dance group is getting popular every day, but they are still not accepted by the senior population. 

Takino told Reuters, “We went to a senior-citizens club, and they really didn’t like us. They didn’t smile even once. Japanese women, wearing things like that, at their ages! Now, I think about half of the people are okay with us and half still can’t accept us.”

89-year-old leader Fumie Takino
Temperatures are checked before training
The squad stretch during a practice session
Takino stretches at home
A member of the squad cleans the studio floor before the practice session
Takino on the subway on her way to the practice session
Takino leaving the studio after filming a dance routine

Takino can’t believe she’ll be 90 next year but reluctantly says that she doesn’t think she’ll still be cheering at 100. In the last few years, she has started to feel more tired, and the pandemic made her stamina fall, but she forgets everything while dancing!

“If you’re interested in something, forget about your age, forget about people saying it’s no good for that reason … I think that leads to a reason to live.”

As a young adult, if I dance, I think my back will break! Seeing women of a certain age dancing and doing what society thinks they shouldn’t do is so inspiring. 

Do what you love to do without caring about the world! They will tell you that you are not good enough or they will try to put you down, but remember to do you! That is when you will truly be happy. We only live once, so why not listen to what our heart says?

Image Credits: Google Images, Reuters

Sources: Reuters, The Guardian, Independent

Find The Blogger: @PrernaMagan

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