Human castles are highly popular in Mallorca and despite not being able to practice for nearly two years because of the Covid pandemic, the castellers, as they’re called, still manage to make it look so easy!
The Al·lots from Llevant have been rehearsing like mad in Manacor and because making the human castles involves a lot of close contact they have to adhere to strict covid health measures.
"The goal was to meet up, rehearse and prepare the pillars that we plan to raise on October 16 in Manacor on the occasion of the Diada" says Al·lots Board Member, Jordi Pedrals, who wrote the security protocol that made the resumption of the human castles possible.
The group is the same all the time, so the castellers are considered coexistent. Around 50 of them gathered for the first rehearsals, ready to get to work and with face masks firmly in place.
"We are a constant group and always the same people," insists Pedrals.
To rejoin the activity, all castellers must have up to date Covid Certificates and be fully vaccinated, or present a negative antigen test before entering the rehearsal room. Children under 12 are exempt.
They also have to complete a responsibility statement detailing any possible contact with infected people and the wearing of FFP2 face masks is mandatory, except for children who have not started primary school.
"Inside the pinya the distances are very short, so we have made some changes, such as removing the crosses that help support the weight of the trunk, to make more space,” explains Pedrals.
The rehearsals are also very different to how they were before the Covid pandemic.
"They are not as sociable as they used to be, because we change into our rehearsal clothes before we leave home, rehearse outside in the open air, then close up and go home when we finish,” says Pedrals. “As for next year, we'll see, who knows what the epidemiological situation will be in Mallorca next January.”
The Covid pandemic is the only time since 1996 that the human castles have ever been stopped in Mallorca.
As yet, no dates have been scheduled for the return of the castellers to Palma.