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The 7 days before filming


We always hear about Filming and feel the excitement that comes with it, after all, we know it results in  a brand new release featuring new music and chorie that empowers us to reign in the new quarter. This month we take you backstage as we talk to Kylie Gates, Creative Director and Program Coach at Les Mills International as well as Head Program Coach for BODYBALANCE® at LMAP to find out exactly what Filming entails.

Who appears on the DVD’s and who chooses them?

“It comes from a process started in ’05. Jackie and I spoke about bringing in Presenters  from around the world as up until then, Presenters had only been sourced from New Zealand. Today agencies from around the globe nominate their Presenters, then Les Mills International (LMI) chooses from these.“

How are the Presenters chosen and what are they looking for?

“The agency might choose a particular Presenter who has been doing great work. It might be a reward for all their hard work and a positive incentive for them. Filming is a great up-skill that agencies wish to offer their Presenters, and they will often use these individuals to influence or inspire others. LMI are looking for Trainers in tip-top shape, with great energy, who are on the A game. 

Run through a typical day of filming.

“Filming is a week long process which usually looks like: 

Day 1 is to get a feel for the release. Each Program Director (PD)  is different, they may teach the release in its entirety and have the Presenters  watch, or they may throw them all in the deep end and get them up on stage teaching. The PD will explain to the Program Coach and Presenters what the release is all about and how they came about it. The PD’s will break the release down, track by track and go through each element. The Program Coach and PD will also work together on the track allocations for the Presenters. Every class is filmed so we can review Technique as a team from Day 1. 

Days 2 – 3  are focused on laying out all the compulsory layer 1 coaching cues and  a framework for the coaching of the individuals tracks.  A lot of work goes into how we will coach the movements especially the new moves specific to the release as we want all Instructors around the world to use these coaching cues in their classes. They are specific, relevant and quite often compulsory for safety and effectiveness. This base coaching no matter the program, is what and how to do the movement. 

Days 4 – 6 integrate Layer 2 coaching, this coaching teaches us how to move more effectively. Layer 2 coaching will bring in the Presenter’s unique teaching style which is integrated with the track focus, so every track is unique and different from the last release. This way we honor the choreographer’s original intention of the track and how it fits in the whole release. Once Layer 2 focuses are clear and working we look at layer 3 and how the Presenter can bring their tracks alive both visually and verbally. 

Day 7 – Some teams mark this as a “Day off” so Presenters can get some rest before filming. Some teams will teach a final class this day but the focus is on relaxing and celebrating as a team after all the hard work they have done for the week is over. 

Day 8 – is lights, camera, action

“Filming day everyone has a call for makeup and hair – they always look incredible as well as decked out in the latest Reebok gear, which rocks! 

If there are mistakes on the day of filming we prefer the Presenters to continue on and the Director will stop the team if needed. We have a lot of cameras and can flip to another shot if needed. Stopping can lose the flow of the class so we try hard not to do that unless necessary. 

In amongst the week leading up to filming, Presenters  do 1 on 1 coaching sessions with the Program Coach where they will break down their track/s and focus on the 5 key elements. Together they will focus on how they are going to bring the track alive.

What does the Presenter go through mentally and emotionally during Filming?

“All Presenters will go through a similar process and at one stage they will feel overwhelmed, and get to a point where they doubt themselves; this is normal. If you want to be amazing and go to that next level its going to be a stretch. Any one of the Instructors that have participated in AIM2 understand that to shift to world class level you have to analyse everything you say and do. 

You have to get comfortable with being uncomfortable - which is moving out of your comfort zone and being open to taking on feedback. The reward comes in the final days when the Presenters can feel and see their work, and their team’s work coming to fruition. Being part of a filming is huge on so many levels and it really is a life changing week from which we know Presenters take back all their learning’s to their countries and share their new found knowledge. 

How do I attend filming? Click here for all the details

I want to attend as a Participant, what should I know?

“Participants usually come for several days and see most of the filming process. It’s a great way for Instructors to see the development a Presenter goes through and for them to be able to take away and apply some of these elements to their own teaching. It is a very inspirational process.”

That’s a wrap

In November, a team of our Les Mills Asia Pacific Trainers and Presenters will be heading out to New Zealand to be the faces of the next round of releases which you will experience in Q1 2015. If you want to get out to NZ and support them click here for details . 

Support your LMAP Presenters and attend the Q4 Filming

Presenting: Steve Cluff
Shadowing: Clare Hallas, Nathan Jones, Michael Montgomery, May Nilo

Presenting: Dorota McNeil, Lainie Jenkins
Shadowing: Riyo Fukunaga, Inge Gnatt

Presenting: Jon Chew
Shadowing: Renee Low

Presenting: Uchop Matt
Shadowing: Fetty Fatimah, Ken Rungruang

Presenting: Matt Thraxton, Karen Russell, Rue She, Reagan Kang
Shadowing: Triesca Arisnady, Yeoh Kok Sin

Presenting: Chris Hutton
Shadowing: Teoh Yee Sin, Ton Krisikorn

Presenting: Tracy Minnoch, Nathan Keene
Shadowing: Alfredick Jacob, Dana Westwood, Daniel Davison, Britt Sukrinso

Presenting: Dione Ware, Niki Dixon

Presenting: Matt Sadler, Kylie Gates
Shadowing: Billy Gani

Presenting: Louise Ullah, Johnny Pawliw
Shadowing: Ken Mun 

Presenting: Jako Misic, Lilian Chong, Dallas Blacklaw
Shadowing: Lee Smith, Kiz DeAthridge, George Tonga, Andre Yunes Gularte, Iain Hennessey