When you think of a fitness class, darkened studios full of young people sweating it out spring to mind.

But in Tiptree there is a spin on the traditional and you are more likely to see grannies deadlifting weights and pensioners making new friends over a cuppa.

Personal trainers Kirsty Beckwith, of Tiptree, and Molly Kelleher, of Braintree, started up their unique classes last year.

It sees pensioners and cancer patients enjoying low-intensity exercises which help boost their physical and mental health. And when the classes end, everyone gathers for a cup of tea and a natter.

In short, Kirsty and Molly are helping to keep people fit and prevent loneliness.

Their idea was born after they both completed personal training courses last year.

They now have specialist skills which include looking after your back, diabetes and diet, which they are putting into practice.

Molly, 24, also did a course in cancer therapy.

The classes first started in Braintree earlier this year.

Kirsty, 46, has now expanded into Tiptree and holds a combined class at St Luke’s Hall every Monday.

“In Tiptree we have one class which is a mix – it is low-impact, chair-based exercises,” she said.

“There is no age limit. It is for anybody, so anybody who has had cancer or is going through treatment can attend.

“It is circuit-based. We say it is a bit like musical chairs – everyone comes in and grabs a chair which has a card on it. They then do the exercise on the card for two minutes before moving on.

“We had one lady who is in her 80s who had a dumbbell and was doing deadlifts. It was so nice to see older people using weights.

“It is really important for bone density and for knees and hips.”

After everyone has completed their circuit they all enjoy a chat and a drink.

Kirsty said: “It is social and helps your mental health and people tell us they can already see benefits and they have lots more energy.”

“They say they are full of life when they go home. It is lovely to see their smiling faces. It makes it all worthwhile.”

Kirsty and Molly give up their time for free to host the classes.

The Tiptree session runs from 4pm to 5.30pm on Mondays and costs £3.

People wanting to attend can call Kirsty on 07854 142917 or just turn up on the day.