Within fitness circles around the world, Lisa Osborne is somewhat of a celebrity. The director of BodyAttack, the exercise-to-music aerobics programme from New Zealand-headquartered Les Mills, has been the face of one of the fastest-growing fitness companies for more than 20 years.
This week, Osborne makes her debut in the UAE at Les Mills Live, a fitness festival held globally featuring all the Les Mills programmes, at Dubai World Trade Centre on December 9.
A former International Aerobics Champion, Osborne began her career with a physical education diploma in 1990. She then became an aerobics competitor, winning five consecutive Australian championships and three international titles. Before joining Les Mills, she also toured and presented at conventions for Australian Fitness Network. Her energetic and motivating style of teaching, along with obvious physical fitness, has won this mother-of-two a following around the world.
Also heavily involved in other Les Mills programmes including BodyStep and Born To Move, Osborne’s husband, Pita, is also an instructor, and their sons, Jackson and Hunter, often feature in instruction videos.
Osborne’s Dubai trip will also mark the launch of the 100th release of BodyAttack. The sports-inspired cardio workout updates every three months with new music and fresh moves.
Ahead of the Dubai event, the fitness icon spoke to Gulf News tabloid! about what fans can expect at Les Mills Live, and what keeps her moving:
Welcome to the UAE, Lisa. BodyAttack fans here consider you quite the celebrity. How does that make you feel?
Super excited. I’m just so excited to share the Les Mills Passion ... see and feel it. That inspires me!
Considering the number of Les Mills fans here in the UAE, why did it take you so long to visit?
Les Mills Live events are in so many countries and we have so many bookings and it’s hard to get to all of them. I’ve never been invited before either! But from now on, Dubai on top of the list.
Les Mills classes are everywhere now, and still growing, does it sometimes surprise you how many fans there are around the world?
No, BodyAttack is a modern fitness training class with so much energy and happiness that will always continue. It’s like an energy wave that keeps building momentum.
What would you say it is about Les Mills and BodyAttack that’s so easy to get hooked to?
Results-driven workouts to awesome music and delivered by educated, passionate instructors. The energy you get from a BodyAttack class is addictive — and you sweat and smile at the same time.
You have the pressure of updating the moves and music every three months? How difficult or easy is that for you?
I love my job and I love putting together new moves/new music, so I love it every day. The pressure is getting the balance of just enough new moves and ideas but keeping it simple enough for new and more experienced members to follow.
You are here to debut BodyAttack 100. How has the journey been so far for you personally?
BodyAttack 100 is already exciting the world as we had such an awesome response to the class when we filmed in Amsterdam — to be here to teach it is going to be electric.
Do you have a favourite release?
Do you have a team working with you on releases? How does it all come together.
No. I do all the music and choreography. It takes three months of trialing many songs and different combinations.
Give us a bit of a behind-the-scenes insight?
Every day I listen to music and try so many different things to make it perfect.
What can fans expect from the BodyAttack 100 release?
Sweat, smile, high energy and challenge!
What can fans expect from Les Mills Live this year?
The feeling of a tribe, shared passion and fitness people that love training together and the positivity that comes from that — a team.
What does Lisa Osborne do when she’s not working out or preparing the next workout?
Family and CrossFit. I exercise every day so I can keep up with my kids.
What’s the dream for BodyAttack? Where else would you like to take it?
Now 6,5000. Take it to 10,000 clubs!
Don’t miss it
Les Mills Live at the Dubai World Trade Centre will start at 8am on December 9. The last class it at 6pm. Tickets, starting at Dh299, are available online.
WHAT IS BODY ATTACK?
BodyAttack is a high-energy fitness class with moves that cater to everyone, from total beginners to fitness enthusiasts. There is a combination of athletic movements such as running, lugeing and jumping with strength exercises such as push-ups and squats. An instructor will guide participants through the tunes and lead them through the workout. The programme is available as either a 55, 45 or 30-minute workout.
HISTORY OF LES MILLS
Les Mills International was founded by Phillip Mills and named after his father Les Mills, four-time Olympian and founder of the Les Mills World of Fitness chain of gyms in Auckland, New Zealand. The company’s exercise-to-music fitness now features 11 programmes including the cardio-inspired BodyAttack, barbell workout BodyPump, the martial arts-inspired BodyCombat, dance-heavy BodyJam, indoor cycling workout RPM, yoga-based BodyBalance and core workout CxWorx. These programmes are licenced to gyms and fitness centres around the world, now totalling 19,500 partners in 100 countries and more than 130,000 certified instructors.