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Don't call us grannies: Meet Japan's senior cheer squad
In a country with fixed notions about senior life, the "Japan Pom Pom" cheer squad features in government pamphlets about active seniors, appears periodically in TV reports and performs in popular charity shows.
OLYMPICS-2020/TOKYO-CHEER DANCERS
RTXC0JQS
April 12, 2021
Fumie Takino, 89, founder of a senior cheer squad called Japan Pom Pom, and other members prepare to...
Tokyo, Japan
The Wider Image: Don't call us grannies: Meet Japan's senior cheer squad
Fumie Takino, 89, founder of a senior cheer squad called Japan Pom Pom, and other members prepare to pose for commemorative photos before filming a dance routine for an online performance in Tokyo, Japan, April 12, 2021. Picture taken April 12, 2021. Japan, one of the world's most rapidly ageing nations, with almost 30% of its population older than 65, is known for the longevity of its seniors. But acceptance of the squad took time in a nation with fixed notions about senior life. "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!'" Takino recalls. "Now, I think about half of people are okay with us and half still can't accept us." REUTERS/Kim Kyung-Hoon TPX IMAGES OF THE DAY SEARCH "KYUNG-HOON CHEER" FOR THIS STORY. SEARCH "WIDER IMAGE" FOR ALL STORIES.
OLYMPICS-2020/TOKYO-CHEER DANCERS
RTXC0JQU
April 12, 2021
Fumie Takino, 89, founder of a senior cheer squad called Japan Pom Pom, poses for a commemorative photo...
Tokyo, Japan
The Wider Image: Don't call us grannies: Meet Japan's senior cheer squad
Fumie Takino, 89, founder of a senior cheer squad called Japan Pom Pom, poses for a commemorative photo before filming a dance routine for an online performance in Tokyo, Japan, April 12, 2021. Picture taken April 12, 2021. "It's dancing; moving your body is nice," Takino said. "And the costumes are unbelievably showy. Some people join just so they can wear them." REUTERS/Kim Kyung-Hoon TPX IMAGES OF THE DAY SEARCH "KYUNG-HOON CHEER" FOR THIS STORY. SEARCH "WIDER IMAGE" FOR ALL STORIES.
OLYMPICS-2020/TOKYO-CHEER DANCERS
RTXC0JO4
April 12, 2021
Fumie Takino, 89, founder of a senior cheer squad called Japan Pom Pom, talks to a member during a break...
Tokyo, Japan
The Wider Image: Don't call us grannies: Meet Japan's senior cheer squad
Fumie Takino, 89, founder of a senior cheer squad called Japan Pom Pom, talks to a member during a break from filming a dance routine for an online performance in Tokyo, Japan, April 12, 2021. Picture taken April 12, 2021. REUTERS/Kim Kyung-Hoon SEARCH "KYUNG-HOON CHEER" FOR THIS STORY. SEARCH "WIDER IMAGE" FOR ALL STORIES.
OLYMPICS-2020/TOKYO-CHEER DANCERS
RTXC0JOF
March 29, 2021
Members of a senior cheer squad called Japan Pom Pom practice a dance routine during a weekly practice...
Tokyo, Japan
The Wider Image: Don't call us grannies: Meet Japan's senior cheer squad
Members of a senior cheer squad called Japan Pom Pom practice a dance routine during a weekly practice session amid the coronavirus disease (COVID-19) outbreak, in Tokyo, Japan, March 29, 2021. Picture taken March 29, 2021. REUTERS/Kim Kyung-Hoon SEARCH "KYUNG-HOON CHEER" FOR THIS STORY. SEARCH "WIDER IMAGE" FOR ALL STORIES.
OLYMPICS-2020/TOKYO-CHEER DANCERS
RTXC0JO2
April 12, 2021
Fumie Takino, 89, founder of a senior cheer squad called Japan Pom Pom, and other members pose for commemorative...
Tokyo, Japan
The Wider Image: Don't call us grannies: Meet Japan's senior cheer squad
Fumie Takino, 89, founder of a senior cheer squad called Japan Pom Pom, and other members pose for commemorative photos before filming a dance routine for an online performance in Tokyo, Japan, April 12, 2021. Picture taken April 12, 2021. "It's dancing; moving your body is nice," Takino said. "And the costumes are unbelievably showy. Some people join just so they can wear them." REUTERS/Kim Kyung-Hoon TPX IMAGES OF THE DAY SEARCH "KYUNG-HOON CHEER" FOR THIS STORY. SEARCH "WIDER IMAGE" FOR ALL STORIES.
OLYMPICS-2020/TOKYO-CHEER DANCERS
RTXC0JQO
April 12, 2021
Fumie Takino, 89, the founder of a senior cheer squad called Japan Pom Pom, wears a protective face mask...
Tokyo, Japan
The Wider Image: Don't call us grannies: Meet Japan's senior cheer squad
Fumie Takino, 89, the founder of a senior cheer squad called Japan Pom Pom, wears a protective face mask as she stretches with other members of Japan Pom Pom during a weekly practice session, amid the coronavirus disease (COVID-19) outbreak, in Tokyo, Japan, April 12, 2021. Picture taken April 12, 2021. "Right at the start, we weren't very happy about being called 'granny cheer dancers,'" said Takino. REUTERS/Kim Kyung-Hoon SEARCH "KYUNG-HOON CHEER" FOR THIS STORY. SEARCH "WIDER IMAGE" FOR ALL STORIES.
OLYMPICS-2020/TOKYO-CHEER DANCERS
RTXC0JKV
April 12, 2021
Members of a senior cheer squad called Japan Pom Pom prepare to film a dance routine for an online performance...
Tokyo, Japan
The Wider Image: Don't call us grannies: Meet Japan's senior cheer squad
Members of a senior cheer squad called Japan Pom Pom prepare to film a dance routine for an online performance in Tokyo, Japan, April 12, 2021. Picture taken April 12, 2021. REUTERS/Kim Kyung-Hoon SEARCH "KYUNG-HOON CHEER" FOR THIS STORY. SEARCH "WIDER IMAGE" FOR ALL STORIES.
OLYMPICS-2020/TOKYO-CHEER DANCERS
RTXC0JOI
April 05, 2021
Fumie Takino, 89, founder of a senior cheer squad called Japan Pom Pom, walks to her team's weekly practice...
Tokyo, Japan
The Wider Image: Don't call us grannies: Meet Japan's senior cheer squad
Fumie Takino, 89, founder of a senior cheer squad called Japan Pom Pom, walks to her team's weekly practice session in Tokyo, Japan, April 5, 2021. Picture taken April 5, 2021. "The last three or four years I've started to feel tired a lot more easily. Then having to be home because of the pandemic really meant my stamina fell. I don't feel anything while I'm practicing, but then the next day I feel pretty tired," Takino said. "I forget everything while I'm dancing." REUTERS/Kim Kyung-Hoon SEARCH "KYUNG-HOON CHEER" FOR THIS STORY. SEARCH "WIDER IMAGE" FOR ALL STORIES.
OLYMPICS-2020/TOKYO-CHEER DANCERS
RTXC0JKU
April 12, 2021
A member of a senior cheer squad called Japan Pom Pom wears a protective face mask as she cleans the...
Tokyo, Japan
The Wider Image: Don't call us grannies: Meet Japan's senior cheer squad
A member of a senior cheer squad called Japan Pom Pom wears a protective face mask as she cleans the studio floor before a weekly practice session, amid the coronavirus disease (COVID-19) outbreak, in Tokyo, Japan, April 12, 2021. Picture taken April 12, 2021. REUTERS/Kim Kyung-Hoon SEARCH "KYUNG-HOON CHEER" FOR THIS STORY. SEARCH "WIDER IMAGE" FOR ALL STORIES.
OLYMPICS-2020/TOKYO-CHEER DANCERS
RTXC0JKX
April 12, 2021
Members of a senior cheer squad called Japan Pom Pom have their temperatures checked before their weekly...
Tokyo, Japan
The Wider Image: Don't call us grannies: Meet Japan's senior cheer squad
Members of a senior cheer squad called Japan Pom Pom have their temperatures checked before their weekly practice session during the Coronavirus disease (COVID-19) outbreak, in Tokyo, Japan, April 12, 2021. REUTERS/Kim Kyung-Hoon SEARCH "KYUNG-HOON CHEER" FOR THIS STORY. SEARCH "WIDER IMAGE" FOR ALL STORIES.
OLYMPICS-2020/TOKYO-CHEER DANCERS
RTXC0JQV
April 12, 2021
A member of a senior cheer squad called Japan Pom Pom puts on shoes as she prepares to film a dance routine...
Tokyo, Japan
The Wider Image: Don't call us grannies: Meet Japan's senior cheer squad
A member of a senior cheer squad called Japan Pom Pom puts on shoes as she prepares to film a dance routine for an online performance in Tokyo, Japan, April 12, 2021. Picture taken April 12, 2021. REUTERS/Kim Kyung-Hoon SEARCH "KYUNG-HOON CHEER" FOR THIS STORY. SEARCH "WIDER IMAGE" FOR ALL STORIES.
OLYMPICS-2020/TOKYO-CHEER DANCERS
RTXC0JKW
April 12, 2021
Fumie Takino, 89, the founder of a senior cheer squad called Japan Pom Pom, checks her makeup before...
Tokyo, Japan
The Wider Image: Don't call us grannies: Meet Japan's senior cheer squad
Fumie Takino, 89, the founder of a senior cheer squad called Japan Pom Pom, checks her makeup before filming a dance routine for an online performance in Tokyo, Japan, April 12, 2021. Picture taken April 12, 2021. "Right at the start, we weren't very happy about being called 'granny cheer dancers,'" said Takino. REUTERS/Kim Kyung-Hoon SEARCH "KYUNG-HOON CHEER" FOR THIS STORY. SEARCH "WIDER IMAGE" FOR ALL STORIES.
OLYMPICS-2020/TOKYO-CHEER DANCERS
RTXC0JOH
April 05, 2021
Fumie Takino, 89, founder of a senior cheer squad called Japan Pom Pom, sets up a video camera to film...
Tokyo, Japan
The Wider Image: Don't call us grannies: Meet Japan's senior cheer squad
Fumie Takino, 89, founder of a senior cheer squad called Japan Pom Pom, sets up a video camera to film the team's dance routine during a weekly practice session in Tokyo, Japan April 5, 2021. Picture taken April 5, 2021. REUTERS/Kim Kyung-Hoon SEARCH "KYUNG-HOON CHEER" FOR THIS STORY. SEARCH "WIDER IMAGE" FOR ALL STORIES.
OLYMPICS-2020/TOKYO-CHEER DANCERS
RTXC0JQZ
April 12, 2021
Members of a senior cheer squad called Japan Pom Pom perform a dance routine as they are filmed for an...
Tokyo, Japan
The Wider Image: Don't call us grannies: Meet Japan's senior cheer squad
Members of a senior cheer squad called Japan Pom Pom perform a dance routine as they are filmed for an online performance in Tokyo, Japan, April 12, 2021. Picture taken April 12, 2021. REUTERS/Kim Kyung-Hoon SEARCH "KYUNG-HOON CHEER" FOR THIS STORY. SEARCH "WIDER IMAGE" FOR ALL STORIES.
OLYMPICS-2020/TOKYO-CHEER DANCERS
RTXC0JO3
April 12, 2021
Members of a senior cheer squad called Japan Pom Pom pose for commemorative photos before filming a dance...
Tokyo, Japan
The Wider Image: Don't call us grannies: Meet Japan's senior cheer squad
Members of a senior cheer squad called Japan Pom Pom pose for commemorative photos before filming a dance routine for an online performance in Tokyo, Japan, April 12, 2021. Picture taken April 12, 2021. REUTERS/Kim Kyung-Hoon SEARCH "KYUNG-HOON CHEER" FOR THIS STORY. SEARCH "WIDER IMAGE" FOR ALL STORIES.
OLYMPICS-2020/TOKYO-CHEER DANCERS
RTXC0JO6
April 12, 2021
Fumie Takino, 89, founder of a senior cheer squad called Japan Pom Pom, and other Japan Pom Pom members,...
Tokyo, Japan
The Wider Image: Don't call us grannies: Meet Japan's senior cheer squad
Fumie Takino, 89, founder of a senior cheer squad called Japan Pom Pom, and other Japan Pom Pom members, perform a dance routine while filming an online performance in Tokyo, Japan, April 12, 2021. Picture taken April 12, 2021. Japan, one of the world's most rapidly ageing nations, with almost 30% of its population older than 65, is known for the longevity of its seniors. But acceptance of the squad took time in a nation with fixed notions about senior life. "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!'" Takino recalls. "Now, I think about half of people are okay with us and half still can't accept us." REUTERS/Kim Kyung-Hoon SEARCH "KYUNG-HOON CHEER" FOR THIS STORY. SEARCH "WIDER IMAGE" FOR ALL STORIES.
OLYMPICS-2020/TOKYO-CHEER DANCERS
RTXC0JQY
April 12, 2021
Members of a senior cheer squad called Japan Pom Pom, laugh after posing for commemorative photos in...
Tokyo, Japan
The Wider Image: Don't call us grannies: Meet Japan's senior cheer squad
Members of a senior cheer squad called Japan Pom Pom, laugh after posing for commemorative photos in Tokyo, Japan, April 12, 2021. Picture taken April 12, 2021. REUTERS/Kim Kyung-Hoon SEARCH "KYUNG-HOON CHEER" FOR THIS STORY. SEARCH "WIDER IMAGE" FOR ALL STORIES.
OLYMPICS-2020/TOKYO-CHEER DANCERS
RTXC0JQT
April 12, 2021
Members of a senior cheer squad called Japan Pom Pom, look at a video of them performing a dance routine...
Tokyo, Japan
The Wider Image: Don't call us grannies: Meet Japan's senior cheer squad
Members of a senior cheer squad called Japan Pom Pom, look at a video of them performing a dance routine for a filmed online performance in Tokyo, Japan, April 12, 2021. Picture taken April 12, 2021. REUTERS/Kim Kyung-Hoon SEARCH "KYUNG-HOON CHEER" FOR THIS STORY. SEARCH "WIDER IMAGE" FOR ALL STORIES.
OLYMPICS-2020/TOKYO-CHEER DANCERS
RTXC0JR0
April 12, 2021
Fumie Takino, 89, founder of a senior cheer squad called Japan Pom Pom, leaves the studio after filming...
Tokyo, Japan
The Wider Image: Don't call us grannies: Meet Japan's senior cheer squad
Fumie Takino, 89, founder of a senior cheer squad called Japan Pom Pom, leaves the studio after filming a dance routine for an online performance in Tokyo, Japan, April 12, 2021. Picture taken April 12, 2021. "The last three or four years I've started to feel tired a lot more easily. Then having to be home because of the pandemic really meant my stamina fell. I don't feel anything while I'm practicing, but then the next day I feel pretty tired," Takino said. "I forget everything while I'm dancing." REUTERS/Kim Kyung-Hoon SEARCH "KYUNG-HOON CHEER" FOR THIS STORY. SEARCH "WIDER IMAGE" FOR ALL STORIES.
OLYMPICS-2020/TOKYO-CHEER DANCERS
RTXC0JQQ
April 12, 2021
Tami Shimada, 69, a member of a senior cheer squad called Japan Pom Pom, prepares to film a dance routine...
Tokyo, Japan
The Wider Image: Don't call us grannies: Meet Japan's senior cheer squad
Tami Shimada, 69, a member of a senior cheer squad called Japan Pom Pom, prepares to film a dance routine for an online performance in Tokyo, Japan, April 12, 2021. Picture taken April 12, 2021. "As our leader says, try anything," said Shimada. "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." REUTERS/Kim Kyung-Hoon SEARCH "KYUNG-HOON CHEER" FOR THIS STORY. SEARCH "WIDER IMAGE" FOR ALL STORIES.
OLYMPICS-2020/TOKYO-CHEER DANCERS
RTXC0JO5
April 25, 2021
Tami Shimada, 69, a member of a senior cheer squad called Japan Pom Pom, walks home from the park with...
Tokyo, Japan
The Wider Image: Don't call us grannies: Meet Japan's senior cheer squad
Tami Shimada, 69, a member of a senior cheer squad called Japan Pom Pom, walks home from the park with her granddaughter Elisa, 4, and daughter-in-law Tomoko, 44, in Tokyo, Japan, April 25, 2021. Picture taken April 25, 2021. "As our leader says, try anything," said Shimada. "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." REUTERS/Kim Kyung-Hoon SEARCH "KYUNG-HOON CHEER" FOR THIS STORY. SEARCH "WIDER IMAGE" FOR ALL STORIES.
OLYMPICS-2020/TOKYO-CHEER DANCERS
RTXC0JO7
April 23, 2021
Fumie Takino, 89, founder of a senior cheer squad called Japan Pom Pom, colours in an adult colouring...
Yokohama, Japan
The Wider Image: Don't call us grannies: Meet Japan's senior cheer squad
Fumie Takino, 89, founder of a senior cheer squad called Japan Pom Pom, colours in an adult colouring book, on the day Japan declared its third state of emergency, amid the coronavirus disease (COVID-19) outbreak, at her home in Yokohama, Japan, April 23, 2021. Picture taken April 23, 2021. "The last three or four years I've started to feel tired a lot more easily. Then having to be home because of the pandemic really meant my stamina fell. I don't feel anything while I'm practicing, but then the next day I feel pretty tired," Takino said. "I forget everything while I'm dancing." REUTERS/Kim Kyung-Hoon SEARCH "KYUNG-HOON CHEER" FOR THIS STORY. SEARCH "WIDER IMAGE" FOR ALL STORIES.
OLYMPICS-2020/TOKYO-CHEER DANCERS
RTXC0JQR
April 12, 2021
Fumie Takino, 89, the founder of a senior cheer squad called Japan Pom Pom, prepares to film a dance...
Tokyo, Japan
The Wider Image: Don't call us grannies: Meet Japan's senior cheer squad
Fumie Takino, 89, the founder of a senior cheer squad called Japan Pom Pom, prepares to film a dance routine for an online performance in Tokyo, Japan, April 12, 2021. Picture taken April 12, 2021. REUTERS/Kim Kyung-Hoon SEARCH "KYUNG-HOON CHEER" FOR THIS STORY. SEARCH "WIDER IMAGE" FOR ALL STORIES.
OLYMPICS-2020/TOKYO-CHEER DANCERS
RTXC0JQP
April 12, 2021
A member of a senior cheer squad called Japan Pom Pom holds a sign bearing the team's name before filming...
Tokyo, Japan
The Wider Image: Don't call us grannies: Meet Japan's senior cheer squad
A member of a senior cheer squad called Japan Pom Pom holds a sign bearing the team's name before filming a dance routine for an online performance amid the coronavirus disease (COVID-19) outbreak, in Tokyo, Japan, April 12, 2021. Picture taken April 12, 2021. REUTERS/Kim Kyung-Hoon SEARCH "KYUNG-HOON CHEER" FOR THIS STORY. SEARCH "WIDER IMAGE" FOR ALL STORIES.
OLYMPICS-2020/TOKYO-CHEER DANCERS
RTXC0JQN
April 12, 2021
Fumie Takino, 89, the founder of a senior cheer squad called Japan Pom Pom, wears a protective face mask...
Tokyo, Japan
The Wider Image: Don't call us grannies: Meet Japan's senior cheer squad
Fumie Takino, 89, the founder of a senior cheer squad called Japan Pom Pom, wears a protective face mask as she prepares to film a dance routine for an online performance, amid the coronavirus disease (COVID-19) outbreak, in Tokyo, Japan, April 12, 2021. Picture taken April 12, 2021. REUTERS/Kim Kyung-Hoon SEARCH "KYUNG-HOON CHEER" FOR THIS STORY. SEARCH "WIDER IMAGE" FOR ALL STORIES.
OLYMPICS-2020/TOKYO-CHEER DANCERS
RTXC0JOG
April 05, 2021
Fumie Takino, 89, founder of a senior cheer squad called Japan Pom Pom, rides a subway as she heads to...
Tokyo, Japan
The Wider Image: Don't call us grannies: Meet Japan's senior cheer squad
Fumie Takino, 89, founder of a senior cheer squad called Japan Pom Pom, rides a subway as she heads to her team's weekly practice session in Tokyo, Japan, April 5, 2021. Picture taken April 5, 2021. "The last three or four years I've started to feel tired a lot more easily. Then having to be home because of the pandemic really meant my stamina fell. I don't feel anything while I'm practicing, but then the next day I feel pretty tired," Takino said. "I forget everything while I'm dancing." REUTERS/Kim Kyung-Hoon SEARCH "KYUNG-HOON CHEER" FOR THIS STORY. SEARCH "WIDER IMAGE" FOR ALL STORIES.
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