NZ Glen : BodyCombat fanatic

Posts Tagged ‘BODYCOMBAT 44

Okay, time for me to come clean here. This is probably the hardest review I’ve had to write, and I’ve now written full reviews on BODYCOMBAT releases all the way back to BC37. Truth is, I’ve put off writing this for a couple weeks… and the reason for that quite simply is I’m not really sure some of you are going to like or agree with what I have to say. Which of course is perfectly fine – if you disagree absolutely tell me! I just would prefer to write reviews that are completely glowing and are full of sunshine, flowers and skipping merrily in fresh meadows 🙂

The thing is, I know a lot of people appreciate the fact I tend to call a spade a spade, and whilst I was tempted to sugar coat this review a little, I’m just going to step out on a limb and call it as I see it. I know I could be in the minority here, and reading feedback on BODYCOMBAT 44 on the Les Mills forums I may well be. But, I’ve had a few messages on facebook from a few of you asking my opinion, and I’m sure no ones going to respect me for being nice just for the sake of it.

I mentioned in my filming post on BC44 that I hoped the release would grow on me. Some releases definitely do take time, I always think of BC39, I didn’t think that much of it at the filming and now I absolutely love it (Come With Me, Hardcore Angel, Cry For You and I Won’t Be Crying are some of my most played tracks ever!) So, I really wanted to give 44 a chance. And I have, I released over three weeks ago, I’ve taught the release in full over a dozen times now at multiple gyms all over the city (in fact of the five Les Mills franchised gyms in town I was invited to release at four of them). So yes, I’ve definitely given this release plenty of time to grow on me.

So, has it grown on me? Well for me the easiest determinant as to whether I love a release is how quickly I mix it out. Here we’re given the guidelines of 2-4 weeks after launch before we start mixing. BODYPUMP 74 for example, three weeks after release and I’ve still not mixed out a single track. In fact, in my last pump class I started by asking the class if they wanted to do it again or for me to pull out some older tracks and the answer was a resounding yes, they wanted to do the new release again. I was thrilled about that as I did too!

Looking back at my last review (43) I wrote “Let me put it this way – tonight is the first night I’m going to start mixing and the only cardio tracks I plan to mix out are 5 and 7. That’s saying A LOT! To my mind those are the weakest tracks of the release – the rest are stunning!” – yes I used the word “stunning” to describe a combat release! That was BC43 however, and that is definitely not a word I would use to describe BC44.

So, enough dilly dallying about with a long winded intro; What’s the deal with 44. Okay, truth is I found this release disappointing. Don’t get me wrong, there are a couple of parts of it I love, but, look at what I wrote about BC43 above – after 3 weeks I only planned to mix out two tracks. With BC44 after the two week mandatory period was up 4 tracks went immediately, and pretty soon after that 8 were gone (by request). In fact, for the first ever time in my almost 3 years of teaching combat I actually had a member come up to me in release week and ask how long we “had” to do the release for. To my mind that really just solidifies the fact that BC44 just doesn’t have the “wow factor” of previous releases. And please don’t think my members are feeling that way because I’m not trying to sell the release. I give every class my absolute all, in fact my good friend Raina came down from Auckland two weeks ago and participated in one of my combat classes. Being a close friend (and also being someone who attends the filming classes in Auckland with me) she knows I’m not really sold on the release – yet came up to me afterwards and said there is no possible way anyone could’ve known I’m not a fan – I really do give it my all.

So, here’s my 2 cents on the release on a track by track basis:

Warmup: Brighter Day (Monday 2 Friday Remix) – Yanou / Use Somebody – Ultrabeat

Warmups are far more music driven for me than any of the other tracks (possibly with the exception of a cooldown) as the choreography is always very basic, and musically I like it. I admit I had my doubts about using a remix of Use Somebody so soon after we had it as a cooldown in BC40, but the versions are so different it’s not a factor at all. I do have a couple of wee comments, but they are very minor. I do prefer warmups without combinations, for example I’d prefer solid upper cuts followed by solid hooks as opposed to combining the two. The reason for this is it’s much simpler to give set up cues when you’re only doing one movement. What I mean by that is if we are only doing uppers I can just say things like “target is under the chin” “elbows in” “drop your shoulder…” etc and it’s obvious what move I am talking about as we’re only doing one. But, if we are doing a combination I have to specifically state “on your upper cut your target is under the chin yada” then cue the hook in the same way “on your hook target is the side of the jaw, rotate your hip, lift your heel etc”. Just means I have to specify specifically what move to which I am referring and makes cueing a touch more complicated than it needs to be on the warmup (hey, I did say it was a minor point!). Same goes for the lower body warmup – the back knee front kick combo just makes cueing a little more difficult than when we have these moves individually. Just means we have to say more, and I’ve always been of the opinion ‘less is more’ when you’re teaching – you need to leave time for what you’ve said to land. But, I’m just being really picky. I do like the warmup so let’s just leave it at that!

Track 2: Energy – Shinedown

Okay, hand in the air I’ll admit I am not a fan of this track at all. Just feels like a mess. I don’t particularly like the “decoy” – even though it’s (apparently) derived from Tae Kwon Do (I have a black belt in TKD and I don’t ever recall this move being a staple in the martial art – but it was a few years ago now). Someone mentioned in a comment on this very blog that when we change the tempo up on the decoys they become too fast to do correctly and they have a point, for a lot of people they kinda turn into switches before the jab. The front kick off the back leg is a nice touch though, and I hope they incorporate that more into future releases, but for me musically and chorey wise this track just doesn’t work. Hopefully many of you disagree.

Track 3: The Time Of Our Lives – Sy & Unknown featuring Lou Lou

Yep, I do like this one. Definitely not as climatic as some of the past power training tracks (it doesn’t build and go off like Send Me an Angel, Poison or Sweetheart as an example) but it is a good track (perhaps those tracks set my expectations too high?). The track seems longer to me than it actually is – perhaps due to the fact it’s five rounds. But yeah, solid track 3 and one you can have a bit of fun with due to the “you and I could fly…” lyrics.

Track 4: Paint It Black 2009 – Masif DJ’s / GIA (Skitz Clubb Mixx) – Despina Vandi

Definitely this is one of the tracks that has grown on me. My only minor gripe is that there’s so much going on in the track that when there’s new people in the class there’s a lot of stuff to cue, and it seems that just as they get the movement right and it changes; moves like the shoot, ginga, jump kick, do take a few goes to get the hang of, would be nice if we did them a little longer before swapping to another. The shoot after the knees feels far more natural than the other way around (as we did in BC43), and the ‘double shoot’ is a bit of a killer on the ol legs. Quick question though, have many of you experienced any lower back discomfort from this track? I’ve had a couple of members mention that to me, and I’ve checked their technique and it’s all good – just wondering if it’s a common occurrence. The shoot is a very crafty way to incorporate lunges into combat, and it feels far more ‘combatty’ doing them this way than the way we did them in say “Don’t Ya Wanna Feel”. Solid track.

Track 5: Ignorance – ToneTonic

LM cover of the Paramore track. Nope, not a fan here either. This track is just all over the show. Chorey feels uneven, and I’m just not a big fan of loads of running in combat (ironically I love the running in BODYATTACK, I just feel attack has a much more natural fit). But we better get used to it as there’s loads of running in the track 5 in BODYCOMBAT 45 as well. Track fives in recent releases are always the weak point of the class for me and again this is no exception (and again that’s the case in BC45 too sadly). Perhaps if I was a Twilight fan I’d feel differently? This track again just feels like a bit of a mess to me. Notice the sound effects are back though??

Track 6: ìNessun Dormaî – Lacrima

Interesting one this one. I don’t dislike it, and I don’t love it. I think perhaps D&R are starting to maybe try to be a little too clever here. Track 6 in BC43 was a great track, almost every one just LOVED it immediately and raved and raved about it; maybe they felt they had to outdo themselves with something equally as clever? Hmmm… Opera in combat, still not sure about it personally. However, the classes aren’t about me and the peeps seem to love it! Though, in my last combat class I gave them the option of doing it again or doing another one and “pirate track” was the resounding response. It’s definitely a recovery track, you’ll find your heartrate drops considerably. Also, is it just me or is there a lot of lateral shuffling in this release? (warmup, track 2, and track 6).

Track 7: Metal Kombat For The Mortal Man – ColorBox

I feel like a bit of a broken record here but again this track hasn’t blown me away. Again, I don’t hate it, but I definitely don’t love it and I do feel that something REALLY special could’ve been done with a Mortal Kombat theme and this missed the boat a little bit. I think the problem is that the track doesn’t really “peak” like my favourite muay thai tracks (Hardcore Angel, So What!, Raver’s Paradise, Let the Beat Control Your Body.. I could go on and on). Just falls a little flat for me. It’s just missing a part that you can really sink your teeth into a just “go off” to. Again like track 5 did you notice the added sound effects? We might be slowly going back to the days of Natha and Gabby (ding ding anyone! ;))

Track 8: Your Shining (Hixxy Remix) – Styles & Breeze

Now we’re talking! Peak of the class, absolutely 100%. I loved this track at the filming, and I still love it now. It’s loooong (longest track 8 ever in fact) but that’s all good as it rocks! Builds and builds and is a climatic end to the cardio part of the class. Not to mention the first few times you launch it – the looks on peoples faces when they realise the track isn’t over… priceless! Love the track and love the chorey. Love it so much in fact that I’m willing to let the grammatical error in the track title slip by 😉 Seriously awesome, and really in my mind the one track that absolutely saves this release from being very average.

Track 9: Put Your Hands On Me – Crookers feat Kardinal Offishall & Carla-Marie

I have a personal theory about the inclusion of Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu in combat that stemmed from a little thing Dan said along the lines of “we wanted to put it somewhere and this felt like the best place” – it kinda seems to me that they are doing BJJ classes, and need to justify that by including it (somewhere) in combat. As it’s a ground fighting style it really can’t go anywhere but here. Does it work? No. To be blunt it’s a fricken nightmare. My combat classes are pretty much packed and there’s just no room in the GF room for the “walking komodo dragon with an alligator pushup” – never mind the fact that there’s also not much room to do it on the stage! Here’s the other thing, if you watch the DVD the intro for this track is 3 minutes long. The track itself is 3 minutes long – so we’re spending as much time introducing a move as we are doing it? (well, actually considerably more in reality considering the komodo dragon/alligator pushup is only done for 2 sets of 4!). It’s overly complicated, requires too much space, requires too much of an introduction, and to be honest isn’t even that much of a workout. I’m sorry to be overly harsh here but I really think this track crashed and burnt. When I started mixing for the first time, and announced “no komodo dragon today” the class actually cheered! (I’m not kidding!) Unfortunately, we might have to get used to that move as I can’t see it going anywhere anytime soon…

Track 10: Doesn’t Mean Anything – Alicia Keys

Not too much to say about a cooldown, but like the music, nice song to bring your heartrate down, not too much kata, good cooldown… still using it now in fact.

So, I’d really like your feedback here. I’ve spoken to other instructors locally and they feel pretty much the same about this release… but what do you think? Am I being a bit hard on it? I know there’s always going to be absolute combat lovers who love anything and everything that’s put out – and yes, perhaps I am getting a bit cynical in my old age. In short I just feel this release whilst is okay, really only had one track that blew me away (t8). Reading my review of BC43 I used words to describe different tracks like “stunning!, EPIC!, Love it!, FANTASTIC!, and Awesome!” – in my review of BC42 I used words like “Great track, Love this one! etc.”, BC41 “Officially my new favourite track 2!, Awesome finish…” but in BC44 my adjectives are far more toned back because the release for me just doesn’t “rock” like any of the more recent ones. In fact looking back I can’t think of any releases I prefer less until we get back to the early 30s. But, I’m only one person and this is only one opinion.

As always would love to hear your thoughts (if you disagree seriously put me in my place here…) 😀

Hey guys! I’ve posted a few articles about this now – specifically about how BODYCOMBAT tracks are getting longer (and – conversely to offset that some are getting shorter as well) so much so that instructors really need to be careful when making up a playlist or you can easily go well over an hour. BODYCOMBAT 43 didn’t have any tracks that made it on to the shortest or longest mixes – however, BC44 definitely does (the track 8 in BC44 is over 8 minutes!!) Take a look at the new lists below – the difference is staggering!


01: Dragostea Din Tei / My Life Would Suck Without You (BC41) 9:48
02: The United Vibe (BC35) 7:11
03: Poison (BC42) 7:31
04: Enter Sandman / Boom (BC41) 7:09
05: How Far We’ve Come (BC37) 6:33
06: Stamp (BC37) 6:47
07: Excalibur (BC42) 7:42
08: Your Shining (Hixxy Remix) (BC44) 8:05
09: Somebody To Love (BC21) 6:05
10: Now We Are Free (BC20) 7:04

TOTAL: 1:13:56

If you look as far back as when upper and lower body were separate tracks you can make this mix even longer by doing The Immortals (BC4) / Electric Avenue (BC12) 10:12! (Thanks Roger for that info!) Of course, in order to counter these long tracks we’ve seen some super short tracks come into combat as well. Track 5 in both 41 and 42 were ridiculously short (heck in BC42 track 5 is under 3 minutes long!)


01: Summermelody / Does the Fish Have Chips? (BC34)   6:11
02: Thnks Fr Th Mmrs (BC34) / Energy (BC44) 3:16
03: Revolution (BC2) 4:19
04: Tribal Dance 2.4 (BC27) 4:26
05: The Anthem (BC42) 2:58
06: Leave Me Alone (BC32)   3:20
07: Run To The Hills (BC33)   3:01
08: Footloose (BC1) 3:46
09: Gonna Fly Now (BC36) 2:52
10: Hero (BC31) 3:38

TOTAL: 37:47

Can you imagine how pi**ed the next instructor would be in if you ran a class 15 minutes over (probably more like 20 with breaks) if you did the longest mix – or how ripped off members would feel if the class was over in 36 minutes! …of course these are extremes and it’s unlikely that anyone would “accidentally” do these mixes – but it is fascinating huh?

Workshop this weekend so I’ll give a full review of BODYCOMBAT 44 as soon as I can. 🙂

You’ve possibly seen this already but here ya go! Our workshop is this coming weekend (I know NZ is soo far behind this quarter!) so I’ll review the release soon. Enjoy 🙂

Hi guys! With Filex and workshops being held in Australia these have hit the net. Interested in your thoughts!

BODYPUMP 74 tracklist

Warmup: Run (Almighty Anthem Radio Edit) – Jamie Knight
Squats: This Is Who I Am – Annie Lee
Chest: We Weren’t Born To Follow – OneZeroOne feat. Ant P
Back: Don’t Speak – Alex Cortez
Triceps: 3 – Britney Spears
Biceps: Boom Boom Pow – Beat Factory
Lunges: Dangerous – Rhythm Twins
Shoulders: She’s A Genius – Badlands Inc
Abs: In My Head – Jason Derulo
Cooldown: Art Of Love (featuring Jordin Sparks) – Guy Sebastian

BODYATTACK 69 tracklist

Warmup: I Gotta Feeling (B-Tastic Remix) – Orangez
Mixed Impact: Boys and Girls – Spacejammers
Aerobic: Real Things – DJ Sophia feat Lucy
Plyometric: Dream A Dream (Cheeky Trax Remix) – Captain Jack
Upper Body Cond: Sexy Chick – Olson Bjerre feat. Sam Knowles
Running: Sunshine After The Rain – Flip & Fill
Agility: I Know You Want Me (Calle Ocho) – Fortune Crew
Interval: Dangerous – Rhythm Twins
Power: Jump That Rock (Whatever You Want) – Masia
Lower Body Cond: Down – club4life
Core : TiK ToK – Ke$ha
Cooldown: Replay – lyaz

BODYCOMBAT 44 tracklist

1a: Brighter Day (Monday 2 Friday Remix) – Yanou
1b: Use Somebody – Ultrabeat
02: Energy – Shinedown
03: The Time Of Our Lives – Sy & Unknown featuring Lou Lou
4a: Paint It Black 2009 – Masif DJ’s
4b: GIA (Skitz Clubb Mixx) – Despina Vandi
05: Ignorance – ToneTonic
06: Nessun Dorma – Lacrima
07: Metal Kombat For The Mortal Man – ColorBox
08: You’re Shining (Hixxy Remix) – Styles & Breeze
09: Put Your Hands On Me – Crookers feat Kardinal Offishall & Carla-Marie
10: Doesn’t Mean Anything – Alicia Keys

BODYSTEP 80 tracklist

Warmup: Respectable – G & G versus DJ Delicious
Step Warmup: Goodbye – Jessica Friendly
Step Orientation: Rock The Casbah – Ronnie Reactive & Ant P
Step Athletic: This Is Who I Am – Annie Lee
Mixed Strength: Walk Like An Egyptian – Tony Moroni & The HardOutCrew
Power Peak: Friday On My Mind – Bodytronixx
Step Recovery: Fame (Bimbo Jones Remix Radio Edit) – Naturi Naughton
Party Step: Where’s The Party – Big Fiesta
Speed Step: Hoedown Throwdown – Carla Cross
Peak: Call Me – Diana Flex
Recovery/Balance/Pushups/Abs: Girl I’m Trying (Nicola Fasano Remix) – J Brazil
Cooldown/Stretch: Brass In Pocket – The Pretenders

BODYBALANCE 49 tracklist

Tai Chi Warmup: Extraordinary Way – Conjure One
Sun Salutations: Send Me An Angel – Sleepthief feat Kirsty Thirsk
Standing Strength: Live Like We’re Dying – Kris Allen
Balance: To Love Again – l’Image
Hip Openers: Fireflies – Original Fire
Core – Abdominals: Doesn’t Mean Anything – Alicia Keys
Core – Back: Just Say Yes – The Cranials
Twists: Happy – Leona Lewis
Forward Bends – Hamstrings: White Flag – Pisolet
Relaxation/Meditation: Gift Of Light – Nadama & Shastro

BODYJAM 53 tracklist

Warmup: Wild & Raw – Fedde le Grand feat. The Stereo MC’s
Isolations: I Can Transform Ya – Chris Brown featuring Lil Wayne & Swizz Beatz
Latin: Let’s Get High (Louie Vega Radio Edit) – Anane
Latin: Let’s Get High (Yves Larock Radio Edit With Rap) – Anane
Disco Twenty Ten: Heartbreak (Make Me A Dancer) – Freemasons ft Sophie Ellis-Bextor
Disco Twenty Ten: A Fifth Of Beethoven (Soulwax Remix) – Walter Murphy
Disco Twenty Ten: Lala Song (Tocadisco Remix) – Bob Sinclar feat. Sugarhill Gang
Disco Twenty Ten: Good Times – Seamus Haji V Mark Knight & Funkagenda
Recover: Russian Roulette – Global Nation feat. Simone F
Maddest Dopeness Eva: Hey Hey (DF’s Attention Vocal Mix) – Dennis Ferrer
Maddest Dopeness Eva: Why Don’t You Love Me (Jump Smokers Club Remix) – Beyoncé
Maddest Dopeness Eva: Holiday (Laidback Luke Remix) – Dizzee Rascal
Maddest Dopeness Eva: How Soon Is Now – DJ Riddle
Groove Down: Turn Your Love Around – George Benson

BODYVIVE 15 tracklist

Rise & Shine: When I Think Of You – Spacegliderz
Connect & Go: Ride Like The Wind (54 Remix Edit) – Fab
Dance Cardio: Shake Your Groove Thing – Solar Collective
Interactive Cardio: Working For The Weekend – Party Playaz
Fitness Cardio: Perfect Day – Tokyo Haze
Tai Chi & Yoga: Minute By Minute – The Doobie Brothers
Balance & Leg Strength: We Will Rock You – Five
Strength 1 – Triceps & Shoulders: Yeah! – Usher Featuring Lil’ Jon & Ludacris
Strength 2 – Hips, Thighs & Butt: Crazy In Love – Beyoncé feat. Jay-Z
Ab Strength: Give Me The Night (George Benson
Back Care: Push Up – Freestylers
Release & Restore: Kiss From A Rose – Seal

RPM 47 tracklist

Pack Ride: TiK ToK – Ke$ha
Pace: Waking Up In Vegas – Martina Lorene
Hills: Ecuador (Bad Behaviour Remix) – Sash!
Mixed Terrain: Meet Me Halfway – TransNoise
Intervals: Ignorance – ToneTonic
Speed Work: Long Way To Go – DJ Sammy
Mountain Climb: What Is Love 2K9 (Cansis Remix) – Klaas Meets Haddaway
Ride Home: Before The Worst – The Script
Stretch: Whatcha Say – Jason Derulo

Hey team – it’s officially hit the net elsewhere so here ya go (I’ve had this for weeks but have gotten in trouble for posting it – but now it’s “out-there” I’m sure it’s all good – most of them were revealed in the sizzler anyway!). I’ll post all the remaining programmes over the weekend. Have linked to closest track where it’s a Les Mills’ cover. Let me know your thoughts 🙂

BODYCOMBAT 44 tracklist

1a: Brighter Day (Monday 2 Friday Remix) – Yanou
1b: Use Somebody – Ultrabeat
02: Energy – Shinedown
03: The Time Of Our Lives – Sy & Unknown featuring Lou Lou
4a: Paint It Black 2009 – Masif DJ’s
4b: GIA (Skitz Clubb Mixx) – Despina Vandi
05: Ignorance – ToneTonic
06: ìNessun Dormaî – Lacrima
07: Metal Kombat For The Mortal Man – ColorBox
08: Your Shining (Hixxy Remix) – Styles & Breeze
09: Put Your Hands On Me – Crookers feat Kardinal Offishall & Carla-Marie
10: Doesn’t Mean Anything – Alicia Keys

Regarding the PPCA – there were concerns about BODYCOMBAT not having any conditioning and cooldown tracks that were PPCA free. Well I doubt these are either – unless LM are making covers? I’m going to write a post on this soon.

Recently there was a thread on a group fitness forum about BODYCOMBAT entitled “Are we getting too serious?” – I won’t link to the forum as it’s a private site and you’d not be able to read the thread without joining – however, the basic gist of it was that many instructors feel BODYCOMBAT is starting to take itself a little too seriously; almost turning into a hardcore MMA (Mixed Martial Arts) class instead of a fun group fitness class.

Here’s a paragraph from the thread:

Has Combat become some sort of religion?  Am I going to Combat “Hell” because I enjoy teaching my Monday morning (predominantly mums) with humour and fun, rather than screaming at them from the start of track 2 (or worse, whistling the change of chorey like they’re dogs)?  All I seem to be hearing at present is:  “If you don’t have a martial arts background, you’re worthless as a Combat teacher” and if your class is not “hardcore”, then you’re not giving an authentic Combat class.

A lot of instructors weighed in on the discussion… and, almost all agreed. Another instructor commented; “I am so with you on this one!!!! 90+% of my participants are moms who want to work up a good sweat and take out their frustrations/stress on imaginary opponents.  They couldn’t care less about martial arts , MMA, the difference between a snapping front kick and a pushing front kick, etc.  They don’t plan out their Combat gear before coming to class. Body Combat is just a fun, safe, great workout for them. AND THAT IS FINE!!!!”

They have a point.

Let’s get one thing straight – I do believe it’s important to teach BODYCOMBAT with some level of authenticity. After all, proper tech equals safe technique and when your participants are copying your positioning it’s vital you role model correctly. However, our members don’t come to a BODYCOMBAT class to get a lesson in Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu, they come to get a workout, blast out any stresses of the day and most importantly have FUN.

Yes “fun“. This was a facet of combat that was hammered home to us during the Advanced Instructor Module (AIM) – people come to a BC class for the enjoyment of it! Straight after the AIM I wrote a post and mentioned that my absolute favourite instructor in the world is Hernán López. His classes are fantastic! Yes they are high energy, and motivating, but they are also fricken hysterical. I mean, if he wasn’t a group fitness instructor the guy should be a comedian. Even if you’ve seen Hernan on the DVDs (where yes he is funny “Kung Fu Panda” anyone??) he’s even more hilarious in his own classes where he’s not quite so scripted. They are just so much fun.

And that’s what BODYCOMBAT should be right? C’mon guys let’s not lose sight of the fact that this is group fitness… we’re not training to fight in the UFC here!

Maybe we should just chillax a little? For myself personally the serious nature of BC has even been taken to a higher level as I tend to get slammed for posting tracklists here. But, I make a point of never posting the tracklists first – I always wait till they hit the net somewhere else. Case in point I’ve had the tracklist for BODYCOMBAT 44 for weeks but haven’t posted it as no one else has. But, by the same token I’ve never once been reprimanded for posting tracklists for any other programme (and I do post them at the same time)… just BODYCOMBAT.

I mean really guys let’s step back and put this in perspective, we’re not nuking foreign countries here – this is an aerobics class! It’s meant to be fun… it’s meant to be a laugh… should it be taken all so seriously?

Love to hear your thoughts….

Here’s the sizzler team! (thanks Gail!) Expect the other programmes any moment – and yes – Use Somebody (the cooldown in BC40) is the warmup in BC44… work that out??! (different version – see the one linked) Enjoy! 🙂

BODYCOMBAT 44 sizzler

Huge dance hit Use Somebody starts us off smooth and sweet. it nicely warms up your legs, preparing them for the vicious battle they are about to face.

Track 4’s Paint It Black 2009 is perfect for working on your execution of the Shoot. And Ignorance will get your elbows higher than ever in Track 5 with one of the coolest chorus combos yet! Let that emo sound drive you and really sink your fangs into this workout.

Then, come with us to a place BODYCOMBAT has never gone before – opera mixed with a tough balance challenge. Nessun Dorma (English: None shall sleep) is an aria from the final act of Giacomo Puccini’s opera Turandot. Find your focus, and let your Side Kick fly. This will really blow your glutes.

Mortal Kombat‘s theme song is in Muay thai for track 7 and have a look – so are sonya, Scorpion and SubZero. Get inspired. Then get furious. Two words: downward punch.

Hold on…..did you hear that? Brazilian jiu-jitsu is in BODYCOMBAT! Crocodile Push Ups and Triangle Chokes? What’s going on here? Take it to the floor and feel those abs getting cut, right before your eyes.

At the filming of BODYCOMBAT 44 last week one track in particular caught my attention more than the others for the strangest of reasons. Without getting myself in trouble for spilling too much information, it was a cover of an artist on the PPNZ’s “clearance will not be given” list – that is, a list of eight bands that, quote “do not allow their work to be used under any circumstances.” (I only know this as my day job is in marketing and I’ve tried to get clearance on one of these bands before – obviously to no avail!) PPNZ is the organisation that licenses the public performance of music (in places such as fitness centres) – so when I heard this track in BC44 I was surprised as obviously they would never allow it to be used – however the important fact here is that the version used was a cover – not the original track.

I’m having trouble making my point here so some background first. You may or may not be aware of a fairly hot topic in the fitness industry right now; The proposed increases to music copyright tariffs to fitness centres by the Phonographic Performance Company of Australia (PPCA). Without getting bogged down in details, the PPCA (the Australian arm of the PPNZ) is currently proposing some MASSIVE increases in the music licensing rates for fitness centres/gyms. Fitness Centres in Australia currently pay $0.968 per fitness class per week to the PPCA, with an annual capped maximum of $2,654. The new proposed rates balloon to $4.54 per member per month – regardless of whether those members participate in group fitness classes or not! To put this in perspective an average sized fitness centre would go from paying $1500 per year – to over $80,000.00! Large gyms would go from $2,654 to over $200,000.00! It’s a massive threat to our industry and obviously a major concern as it could set a new precedent worldwide.

Now, this is just my opinion here – I literally have no inside knowledge about what Les Mills are doing – but, as far as I can see you only have to look at your recent Les Mills releases though to see that they’re preparing for the worst. When LM creates their own music they are able to side step the PPCA tariffs.  I grabbed one of my combat releases from 2008 (BC37) and took a look. Not one Les Mills cover track on it (easiest way is to look at the back and you’ll see © Les Mills Music Licensing Ltd under the track). As a comparison I grabbed BC41 and took a look – just a year later – half the release is LM covers. Pump 67, 68, 69 – not one cover. 72 – I think has 3 and Pump 73 as far as I can see has six!

Now, obviously covers aren’t ideal. Heck, for years LM sold themselves as being head and shoulders above the other group fitness systems (like Radical) as they used only original artists. But, times are changing and before too long we may find that our releases are exclusively covers. Which brings me back to my original point – and the reason for the post; Putting a positive spin on a cr@p situation:

Let’s say you’re a Programme Director and you hear a track on the radio that you think would make a phenomenal track for your programme. In the past – you’d have to go through all the proper channels, jump through a whole raft of legal hoops to possibly be able to get that track licensed (it’s not an easy process – and personally I was only trying for NZ – let alone the entire world!) – and that entire process takes time and when approval finally does come through (if it does) and you’ve filmed the release and then it hits the streets 4 months later… well let’s just say it’s more than likely that track would have had its day in the sun and we’ll all be sick of it! On top of that being an original track it can’t be edited – the PD has to make the choreography fit to the music – not the other way around (which in an ideal world would be better). But… that’s what has to be done as getting original tracks/artists is always much more preferable to using a cover version.

But – due to all this PPCA carry on – imagine the ability to use original artists is now out of the question (obviously this would be a massive shame but I’m trying to be glass is half full here!) Now, under those circumstances when a PD hears a track they rush into the office and get LM Music to whip up a cover – mixed exactly as they’d like for their class. Sped up, slowed down, spliced, whatever they want really! On top of that – there’s comparatively next to no messing around with legalities or licenses – a quick session in the studio and its done (obviously the process isn’t quite this easy but you see where I’m going).

Which brings me full circle to my opening paragraph. As I said the track that got me thinking about this from BC44 is from an artist on the “clearance will not be given” list. That is, when LM only used original artists this track could never have been in combat. But now – a whole raft of new musical opportunities open for us. Granted – they will be covers, but some of the Les Mills covers are really good (Use Me in BC42 was almost indistinguishable from the original) – some in my opinion aren’t the best (Know Your Enemy anyone??) .

As such, we could now start seeing some exciting new music that we’ve never seen before in our releases. And that, could be a pretty cool side effect of a rather cr@ppy situation don’t ya think?

Rach after the BC44 filming

Rach after BC44

I’m a bit torn as I write this actually. You see, if you’ve read my post on the BODYPUMP 74 filming (which was immediately before combat) you’ll see I finished that class absolutely fizzing. I mean the class just rocked… I was smashed but still completely amped up for BODYCOMBAT 44… I’m sure you know the feeling; exhausted and excited all at the same time?!

It’s exactly the same way I felt right before the BODYCOMBAT 43 filming. That day combat came straight after BODYATTACK 68 – you go into the next class physically exhausted but still amped on a combination of endorphins and adrenaline…

But that’s where the comparison between the two filming days ends really. Here’s why; this is what I wrote about the BODYCOMBAT 43 filming:

Highlights of the release for me? Easy. Track 3 is great, track 8 is freaking fantastic, but track 6, well, in the words of Raina; it’s E-P-I-C!  Honestly I can’t say I’ve ever said a track 6 is my favourite track of a release before – but, definitely it’s the stand out track of BC43. It would be closely followed by track 8 however, this is a beast of a track with a 20 move combo that will smash you into a state of euphoria. We were situated towards the back of the class and all I could do at the end of this track was look to my mate Reymond and just smile – we had completely blown the roof off LM in that last cardio. Smashed is the only word to describe it.

This is why I’m a little torn… after being SO excited about BC43, after leaving and describing tracks as E-P-I-C I’m feeling a bit bad about not being excited about BC44. I loved track 8… it was awesome… but the rest of the release left me feeling a little bleh. I thought maybe it was just me, so afterwards in the changing room I asked a super long term combater what he thought and he agreed with me completely.

Okay, so let’s push that aside and get down to the nitty gritty and I’ll just report the facts (well as much of the facts without going into specifics about music or chorey if that makes sense!) BODYCOMBAT 44 was presented by Dan, Rach and Hernan. Again they were wearing the latest LM clothing line and it looked pretty cool (pic below). The shorts especially were awesome. This release didn’t appear to have a “theme” per se – Dan mentioned he’d been watching a performer on Idol that had him in fits of laughter and that this release – much like that day – was about finding pleasure in the smaller things in life. Hmmm… interesting theme for a combat class! 🙂

BC44 sees a new martial art being brought into the programme. I’m not sure if I’m allowed to tell you what it is or not so I’ll play safe and just say it’s a “ground fighting” style used in mixed martial arts. What else can I tell you – the warm up was a surprise – it was a remix of a song that was used in a VERY recent BC release… Track 4 built on the new move introduced in BC43, and track 6, well, let’s just say track 6 is all about maintaining balance

Track 8 was stand out track for me. I immediately came home and tried to find the track on the net so I could listen to it again… you’ll love it.

So yeah, without giving the game away there’s not too much else I can say! Unfortunately all I’m really allowed to report on is my opinion of the release… and I wish I was more excited about it I really do! What I have found in the past is that there are some releases you just love right off the bat… and there are others that take time to grow on you. BC39 for example, I wasn’t overly impressed with at first and now it’s one of my all time favourites. So, in that regard I really hope BC44 grows on me (and I’m sure it will). In the interim we have BC43 to look forward too… and that is something I’m really excited about!

Hernan, Dan & Rach

Hernan, Dan & Rach - sorry couldn't get a pic of them all together!

Hi guys, happy new year!

Below you’ll find the filming days for the Q2 2010 releases (Q1 were filming in October last year). I don’t have the exact times for each filming yet (LM usually let us know that the week or so before) and I will update this post the moment they are available. Also bear in mind these could change so check back a little closer to the day to confirm.

Thursday 28th January 2010


Tuesday 2nd February 2010

  • RPM 47
  • BODYJAM 53

Man BODYSTEP 80!! That’s 20 years of Step! That’ll be sure to be a paarty! For those planning ahead the next batch of filming dates after this one (Q3 2010) look to be on Thursday 22nd and Monday 26th of April 2010. I have the plans for those too if someone does want them. I’ll definitely be at the combat, balance and pump and will definitely try to make attack too – let me know if you’re coming and see you there!! 😀

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