It was the chiropractor who ordered the Pilates directive.

Earlier this summer, exactly a week after smashing my ageing body about on my mountain bike on a hillside outside Merthyr Tydfil, I felt a million dollars. Feeling smug at belying the years, I went out to the car and leant in to give my daughters a kiss as they departed to Cornwall.

As I twisted my body I felt it smart somewhat and am currently in rehab after suffering a couple of slipped discs, vertebrae trauma and lumbar injury.

I have been immobile, passed out through the pain and endured trips to A&E and the doctor as well as the chiropractor.

Although not cheap, the chiro is worth every penny as he scolds me in a mild-mannered way should I stand or bend incorrectly. He also insisted I undertake Pilates and last Saturday I begrudgingly followed his advice.

With football and cycling on the back burner for a few months, I felt uneasy as I waited outside the studio at the Cotlandswick leisure centre in London Colney.

There were lots of, mainly older, women standing with the gym equivalent of a prayer mat constructed of the finest imported sponge. After collecting my mat, I lay it down to worship at the altar of the pan pipe gods.

My first location was quickly sneered at as I was mistakenly laying in the elderly gentleman’s spot as he shook his head vigorously and muttered something about the yoof of today.

After that initial faux pas, I repositioned myself, the lights went off, and the softly spoken, but excellent instructor directed us what to do as Elbow, Muse and what I believe to be the Wurzels wafted through the studio on pan pipes and I wondered where on earth these CDs are bought from. (Amazon, it turns out.)

We stretched and tightened our stomach muscles as I clenched and wished I hadn’t snaffled had that second helping of curry the previous night, although I was thankful for the pan pipes at that point. The soothing sounds of Enya on Guatemalan woodwind with a bit of an acid house twist, coupled with the dimmed mood lighting, left me dazed and confused for a moment and tricked me into believing I was at a hippy commune induction session.

We did all manner of unpronounceable moves and grooves, yet I was glad I was short sighted as another older gentleman, in rather close proximity, was wearing some loose-fitting shorts and I’m sure one of his boys popped out of the barracks.

Several of the gentler exercises proved too difficult for my back and I lay on the mat in near darkness and regretted spending a lifetime criticising pan pipes as an art form as I drifted in and out of consciousness before realising that something had indeed popped out of my neighbour’s shorts.

I only wished the instructor had gone the whole hog and introduced joss sticks to soften the visual blow by exciting another of my senses.

Attending under duress is one thing but, in all honesty, and please don’t attack me for this Pilates aficionados, I came out feeling as if I hadn’t exercised.

I want to exit drenched in sweat after a workout, and have others actively cross the road upon spotting me in a traumatised post exercise disposition. My forehead was as barren of fluid as my head is of hair and I will be looking at an alternative way to practice my back rehabilitation in weeks to come.

You can keep your ‘double leg press’ and the ‘pendulum’ I’m afraid. That said, the one good thing to come out of the experience: I have now found a new musical genre with which to become culturally emboldened having just ordered the ‘Ultimate pan pipe chillout album’ by the imaginatively named ‘Pan Pipes Chill out band’. If that works out there is a whole new musical world awaiting me including the West Indian contribution: ‘Pilates of the Caribbean’.