NZ Glen : BodyCombat fanatic

BODYCOMBAT 52 filming

Posted on: February 2, 2012

One packed house!

One packed house!

The BODYCOMBAT 52 filming was always going to be a very very emotional evening. With the passing of Hernan just a few days earlier everyone was anticipating this class to be a special tribute to our BODYCOMBAT hero – and a tribute it certainly was. The room was absolutely packed to capacity with an amazing number of people wearing black armbands (including Dan and Rach) as a mark of respect to our fallen warrior. I’ve been to 14, maybe 15 Combat filmings and I don’t recall ever seeing one this busy – it was truly amazing to see so many people. Even people that never usually do Combat made the effort in his memory.

Many of you have asked me about the tribute itself. Well it was beautiful. For the cooldown Dan and Rach called up many of the Les Mills instructors present that worked closely with Hernan (names you’ll know from DVDs such as Sarah Robinson, Chris Richardson, Will Pritchard, Sharyn Sue See…) as well as Hernan’s brother Leo who had just flown into the country. The cooldown track that they chose given the circumstances was perfect. Just perfect. By the end of it the whole room was in tears. Literally the whole room. It was an amazing tribute to an amazing man. The entire room came together as one in Hernan’s honour and it’s something I’m sure I’ll remember forever.

If you are reading this as an instructor I’m sure that magical moment will be captured on film. And if you’re a participant never-fear as you too will know what I’m talking about when you experience the release in your own gym.

Hernan’s trademark was his ‘Colgate smile’ and he would’ve wanted us to work hard and have a great time so it’s something we all made an effort to do. And to be honest it was made a lot easier by the fact that BODYCOMBAT 52 is freaken AWESOME.

Dan and Rach presented this release on their own this round. They were dressed in stunning new Les Mills gear. Although LM gear does always look pretty good, this is the first time I’ve ever looked at it and thought “OMG I’m buying that!”. The male shorts especially were really cool – from memory they were a textured charcoal with orange trim; LES MILLS written in massive orange letters down one leg and ‘BODYCOMBAT’ across the other (bout time LM started properly branding us – none of this tiny discreet ‘LMI’ stuff!). The male t-shirt was pretty cool too. Just an orange cotton tee (kinda like the green one from a few releases ago) but it had BODYCOMBAT in large letters down one side and a very Venumesque logo down the other (yes I did just make that word up). That’s two releases in a row the BC gear has been orange and it works surprisingly well!

So onto the release itself. Well, as always I cannot mention specifics about music or choreography, but I can give you my opinion on it so that’s what I’ll do. Bear in mind this is all from memory and obviously my mind was a bit cloudy that night but I’ve tried my best to recall as much as I can.

Warmup – both tracks uplifting and lower body especially was very fun! Without giving too much away – this is the second release in a row we’ve gone all sexy in track one! (there that’s as much of a hint as you’re getting!) Choreography wise the track did seem a bit ‘bitsy’ in that there are moves in the warmup that aren’t in the actual release – but that’s a minor nitpick of mine and neither here nor there.

It seems we have a reoccurring artist in track 2 – again I can’t mention any specifics but this person’s music is back (again!). If you’re into rock you’ll enjoy this track. Track 3 was possibly my favourite track of the release. If you offered me $1,000,000 to tell you the actual song I couldn’t for the life of me tell you but I do know I loved it! Felt like uplifting hard trance – was awesome.

Track 4 – well, this track was in BODYPUMP 82 as well! It’s an old track (from the early 2000’s) that’s been redone as a club anthem and it’s good! Kicks, kicks and more kicks! Track 5 – well, three words. IT. WENT. OFF. Dan and Rach I LOVE the new format for track 5s as does everyone else I know. Freaken awesome just brilliant. A true ‘power’ track and very easy to remember the words to this one! 😉

Track 6; Youch. Leg conditioning. No esquivas (phew as that’d be 3 releases in a row!) but tonnes of leg loading. Ouchies. Track 7 is a marathon. Felt to me to be at least a good 7-8 minutes. Very simple combo – loads of knees – heart rate maxed out. Massive track. Again it’s a rock track – not my personal preference for muay thai but to be honest I barely noticed as I was too busy breathing out of my butt! Track 8 is a goodie – it has been used in a recent LM programme so I have heard a lot of this track lately… but super solid track all the same.

Track 9 is a tough conditioning track. Obviously when I’m doing a release I’m making mental notes all the way and again I have zero idea what this track was… I’m not even sure I heard a single lyric! I do know the abdominal training fired up my core though that’s for sure. And, cooldown was just gorgeous. Beautiful track and as I mentioned perfectly fitting given the tribe’s recent loss.

So, as you’ve probably worked out by now I loved BODYCOMBAT 52. It reminded me of BC43 or 48 which I also fell in love with immediately. I don’t know about you but for me BC50 was a grower. I wasn’t ‘blown away’ at first – but after doing it several times I began to really like it. Some releases are like that. This one isn’t. I was blown away right on the spot – first time. Look forward to this one guys it’s awesome 🙂


31 Responses to "BODYCOMBAT 52 filming"

This gives me the most goosebumps ever!
I was supposed to be down there for the filming, but didn’t make it.
Still doing release 50, but almost time for Q1.
Can’t wait for BC52!
(Say hi to My friends if you’re still in Auckland)


Oh Elin you really missed out in was magical! Thanks for your comment 🙂

First of all, rest in peace Hernan. I have never known him, but saw him in some of the BC videos and I feel as if I have lost a brother. We are bound by a good cause I believe, that’s what I feel towards fellow combat participants. And I would like to follow what Hernan has taught, that is to work hard and have a great time.

Thanks Glen for the review. Many newbies might feel your review doesn’t help at all, but for me, it’s a good insight for my anticipation. I have better prep before going for the BC launch (which are usually packed) in my gym after reading your blog. At least I will put it into mind about the kicks in track 4, the leg loads in track 6 (ouch, I’m hearing BC50’s track 6 in my head), and the marathon track 7 (I need to better manage my stamina for track 7 and 8). But for now, I am gonna be patient as BC51 is coming up soon..


Thanks Alvin – yeah I need to master the art of saying something without saying anything! 😉

Track 7 to me was one of the hardest muay thais ever – we’ll need to get fit(ter) for this one!

Appreciate your thoughts 🙂

I can’t wait to see it! I’m excited about the tribute to Hernan Lopez…We all BC instructors around the world are going to miss him…Rest In Peace and smile wherever you are Hernan :]

Brilliant write up as usual Glenn. Well I can’t wait for 52 and we still have some weeks left until 51 gets out there ! Ay least I should get to see San in the flesh over here in the uk at our super quarterly release. Eagerly awaiting 51 track release 🙂

Nice! Thanks for sharing!

I like everyone else was heartbroken to hear that Hernan passed away, it’s a terrible loss.

Our quarterlies here in Finland for BC51 aren’t until late February but already I am so ready for these new releases – and the new clothes! Thanks again Glen for sharing your thoughts.

Thanks for sharing Glen – after 52 is released will have to convince one of my instructors to let me see the tribute… I will be baking brownies me thinks..
Anyway – “Reminded me of 43” totally got my attention! Looking forward to it. 🙂

Thank you for sharing this beautiful report with us, Glen!!!!! Although I wasn’t there to see it, reading this post made me feel like I was there and made me feel the ONE TRIBE atmosphere for special tribute for our hero. Even without knowing the music and chorey, I could see Rach and Dan on stage, hear the roar of Studio One, and feel the emotional uplift of the whole room!!!

I instantly fell in love with 43 and 48 too, so am really excited!! Just can’t wait for the QW!! I think I’ll cry watching the DVD while Rach calls out the trainers names during the beautiful cooldown.

A really nice insight into BC 52, we havn’t even unleashed 51 yet and I am already hyped up about 52. It sounds like a lot of people came to truely express their respect and honour for Hernan. I look forward visiting Auckland for the 1st time for the next filmings hopefully. Thanks again for a great insightful and warming post. Love reading your bloggings.

Lots of respect from the UK brother

Ali 🙂

I’m a first time commenter and just wanted to let you know that our (absolutely brilliant) instructor here in Japan did a really moving tribute to Hernan Lopez in class tonight, talking about how much she learned from his video appearances and how inspiring he was to her. It’s lovely to know that he had such an amazing influence on people around the world, and how much we participants benefit from his enthusiasm and skill, even from over 8000kms away.

Thanks for reminding us of how much people we may never have met can make our lives brighter and better every day.

wow man! your words just touch my heart, thanks a lot for this information, really is an honor for me and the rest of the world to feel like we are family…sorry… my english sucks haha…thanks again!

Thanks a lot for sharing Glen! 🙂 I can imagine what happened on BC 52 filming.. I think it was very beautiful, magical, awesome and touchy.. When all fighters from around the world shared and united as a big family to honor our hero, Hernan.. I bet that moment would stick with us forever..

Yep, I believe that Hernan want us to work hard and keep smiling.. To continue his dream to make this world a better place and fitter planet.. 🙂

Thanks again, Glen! Good job, brother! Big hugs for u… 🙂

Brilliant, thank you Glen.

warmup: LMFAO – Sexy and I Know It

Hello Nzglen.
I’m a fan of body combat. I am Spanish and I would like to publish your post BODYCOMBAT 52 filming translated into Spanish for me, since many people would be delighted to read what your bills but does not know English.
My English is not very good but I’m improving it and aided by translators for what I do not know the language. I’ll quote and put the link in my post so people will discover as I did. Thank you very much for your post and I will continue following you on Twitter too.
@ josedalefuerte
@ dalefuerte

You’re absolutely welcome to translate my friend – what’s mine is yours!

Hernan du bist icono von Body Combat für immer , es ist schwer zu merken , dass du bist nicht da ….

I want to translate too, in French, for all the Lesmills Belgian and French fans 🙂 i’m a BC and BP teacher, can you add me @ FB?

Hi! Take a look! Here’s the tracklist:
1a. Rain Over Me – Love Empire
1b. Sexy and I Know It – DJ Shocker
2. Crazy Train – Max Motor
3. When I Close My Eyes – Dougal & Gammer
4. Bring Me to Life – Jan Wayne
5. Passenger – DJ Gollum
6. Ring the Alarm – Beyonce
7. Seek and Destroy – Agent Orange
8. Falling – Breeze vs Barley
9. First of the Year – Skrillex
10. The Fighter – Gym Class Heroes
I am not sure if this is right.

Hello I do body combat in France and we are still in the previous release (51) which I must say is technical and physical but I like it very much. I heard the music of the release 52 and I must say I do not like it at all ……. hope we will still have fun……..

Just watched BC 52 master class filming and it’s so awesome! Great energy, power and passion… I can feel the atmosphere there and cooling down track is really really beautiful… In memory of Hernan, our friend, hero and mentor… 🙂

Have to say BC 52 is probably the most boring Combat class ever. The combos are too simple and you just keep repeating them over and over again. What a bore. The Muy Thai track is the worst – there’s no energy in repeating the same combo that many times. Once on each side would be ok and then other combos but now we’re doing the same the whole time. Can’t get any energy from this. You just drag yourself to do the moves without any joy.

The knee-knee-front kick- back kick combo is back again – it just was in BC 51. Why won’t we get something new? The combo is good, but not in consecutive programs.
During the last year, the classes have become more simple and boring coreogrpahywise. I’ve been doing BC for over 10 years, so I have some experience and know that there are many excellent BC classes and that they have the talent to make them, but now they’re in a notch and should work their way up again to make some great new classes.

I totally agree with you about track 7, it’s the worst: repetitive, long long track and rocky. It cool me down and didn’t enjoy track 8.
However I liked track 4 and the killer track 6. I haven’t done BC 53 yet but I have great expectations about it.

I feel the same way you feel about this release, Glen. I’m American, but bollocks to those who feel otherwise about this great release. There are tons of repetitions and therefore the best release to give to newbies. That’s who I believed D&R made this release for. Remember what Rachel said in the 50th release? They’re going back to basics. So now would be a great time to start Combat before it goes back up to the same difficulty as say…48.

I’ve only been combatting for a year and a half, but I’ve been fortunate to obtain releases dating back to 2007. I’m glad that they take material from the 30s and use them again for new releases. Everyone benefits from this because new people will get to see awesome moves and combos created from years ago, and experienced people, like the commentor above me, will see stronger versions of what they did a while ago. Like the “kick kata” from 52 and 51. It was also in 39 but back then it was at a slug’s pace compared to now. Great job to D&R for making a release that everybody can enjoy.

Hi glen!
Just released combat 52 today very impressed! Regularly read your blog and notice on here and also the les mills website about combat being boring… Very interesting subject as I’ve been teaching combat since I was 16 and I’m now 27 I’ve seen this program evolve MASSIVELY… I admit hands down that the old stuff (prob 20 down) can be relatively easy… BUT as I always say – combat is for EVERY body not just one – and you can take your workout as you wish… But by no means is combat “boring” and have been doing a awesome job since the last couple that were pds..

I,m a bodycombat instructor from spain, and I think the older releases were better. In the last year I introduce the news Bodycombat and I can see how my pupils get a little bored with the punch or kicks, always are the same moves (star with jag or jag cross…I mean is very previously)with a few magic moments. The music is kind of DISCO CD nice, but no cool. I wait all the Bodycombat with pasión but the lastest

I’m not saying BodyCombat is boring – I wouldn’t be doing it for as many years as I have, just trying to say the coreographys have taken a step back in versatility and the very long repeats don’t give you the same amount of joy and energy. Take a look at the Muy Thai track: you repeat the same punch and runny man combo what, six times per side? The punch coregraphy should have changed each time, or at least there could’ve been three punch variations that you would’ve repeated once per side.
Looking forward to next release! Hopefully it is just as epic as you say Glen 🙂

yes 52 is epic. Really. For the first time, I actually liked all 10 tracks in a single release! I have never liked a full complete release until now since module training 2 years ago.

it’s coming.. and it’s huge.. be ready to be blown away!

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