Our Heavenly Bodies Photo Shoot: What It’s Like to Pose Nude at Age 67

And why we should all be taking pics of ourselves naked

Joan White; Photography by Pier Nicola D

In our beautifully shot July fitness feature, “Heavenly Bodies,” we asked 15 of Philly’s fittest citizens to strip down, show off their bodies, and share what they do to look so good naked. Of course, getting 15 Philadelphians—even amazingly fit ones!—to pose nude was, understandably, not easy. It takes guts to strip down and let the world see you exactly as you are without a strip of clothing to hide behind or a pair of pockets in which to stuff your hands.

Our last behind-the-scenes post of our naked fitness photo shoot, where we asked our subjects to tell us what it was like posing nude, was so popular that when Joan White, one of Philly’s top yoga gurus, and Rocco Cima, chef/owner of Fuel and Q102 DJ, shot me their thoughts after returning from their summer vacays, I had to post them.

Do you think you could pose nude at age 67? Joan did, and the feedback she received from numerous Philly women was phenomenal. Check it out, and see why Rocco says we should all be taking pics of ourselves naked.

JOAN WHITE, 67, owner, B.K.S. Iyengar Yoga Schoolof Central Philadelphia, joanwhiteyoga.com
First, let me state for the record that I had expected to be working with a drape of some kind. So, when I arrived, I was prepared  for that. I had actually worked out some poses using a drape the night before.  It wasn’t until I actually was in the room with Nick, the photographer, and asked for the drape that I found out that there was no drape. For a split second I was in a state of shock, asked him if he realized that I was 67,  and then just said to myself “why not?”  I have always been up for new experiences, so I dropped my robe and started. I wasn’t very nervous, or maybe I was in denial because Nick was so professional and he kept me moving the entire time switching from one pose to another.

That said, I was nervous about which photo he would pick. I really didn’t want to have all my students, present and past, looking at my naked backside. I was very relieved when I actually saw which picture he chose. I have received many e-mails from women thanking me for stepping up and showing that life isn’t over just because one is getting older. Some of the women wrote that they felt empowered after seeing me. I don’t know if I feel empowered or just pleased that I was included with 14 people so much younger than me and with such beautiful bodies. Actually, I am still processing the entire experience. My husband was amazed that I went through with the shoot once I knew that I would be completely nude, but was proud of me when he saw the picture. I have been away from Philadelphia since the picture came out so it remains to be seen how I will feel once I see my students reaction face-to-face.

ROCCO CIMA, 25, Q102 DJ and chef/owner of Fuel, fuelphilly.com
The photo shoot was so much fun! When you guys first asked me to do it I was Like “Hell, Yeah.” Than after I hung up the phone it started to hit me. Am I really going to do this? My mom is going to kill me. In the end, it gave me more motivation to make sure I didn’t miss a day at the gym or splurge on some fast food. It kept me very focused on my healthy living style and fitness. I would definitely recommend that people take pictures of themselves naked to track progress. It is a great motivator!

Rocco Cima