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    Case studies

    Strength Development Launches in Finland

    LES MILLS Strength Development is the first of a brand-new series of innovative group workouts that meet how the next generation of members want to work out. Strength Development was recently launched in Finland. Learn more about this new program, what is the education like, how it is to teach and what are the benefits for the members.

    Les Mills Nordic

    Strength Development class at GOGO City, Tampere

    “Strength Development can be thought of as a bridge between strength training, gym, and group fitness. It has really worked as such at GOGO. Many group fitness goers have learned to slow their pace down, increase weights, and venture into the gym side for training. On the other hand, gym goers have found group fitness through Strength Development.” says Karo Nyman, Les Mills Instructor, and Fitness Coordinator at GOGO Fitness Center in Tampere.

    Karo continues by saying that two live educations have been held in Finland so far in 2023. “The education is a one-day Add-on training. To participate in the training, the instructor must have either a Personal Trainer background or a BODYPUMP®, Les Mills GRIT®, Les Mills CORE®, or Les Mills TONE® license.”

    “The educations have been very successful because of the experienced and knowledgeable instructor pool. Instructors have been happy with the cost-effective one-day education when they get a new program certificate in one day. At present, there are 20 certified Strength Development instructors in Finland."

    Karo Nyman

    “At GOGO, we have had members from all age groups in Strength Development classes.” Karo says that there are many senior members attending the classes who have realized the benefits of strength training. “On the other hand, 17-20-year-olds are often seen more on the gym side but inspired by the new program now also in group fitness.”

    “Our group fitness studio has a capacity of 40. We have three weekly classes. Two evening classes and one morning. Strength Development classes have been fully booked for many days in advance and class attendance has been amazing so far.”

    “Although the programs are progressive, the customers can join at any time. We have thought of adding the basic strength training programs, i.e., Strength Development programs 1 and 2 permanently to the schedule. This way, the customer can start with these if they wish and then move on to more advanced programs. This could serve others than first timers as well because reviewing basics is always a good thing.”

    “Our members have had a lot of happy aha moments in class. One customer who is a regular at BODYPUMP classes challenged himself and put 10kg weights on the barbell for deadlifts in Strength Development. He was thrilled to see that the barbell moved well.”

    “Progression is strongly visible to customers, and it is a really big motivator. The progression is nicely built into the program. Strength Development continues in a 12-month cycle and the customer is motivated and hooked to continue. So, it’s a great product also in terms of customer retention.”


    "Tiia Törrö is one of the Strength Development instructors in Finland who has attended Karo’s training. Tiia is a Physical Trainer and teaches group fitness classes at Fitness club Hukka in Oulu. Here are her thoughts on the new program.

    “I have found that customers are really committed to the Strength Development program. In the first class, members usually test and try weights that are suitable for them. Customers attend an average of 1-2 times a week, and there are currently 3 classes per week. We may add more classes for the summer. Each program is repeated for one month at a time. Strength Development classes have attracted all age groups at HUKKA.”

    Tiia also says that she would recommend the class to everyone. “Strength Development is a really sensible exercise. Progression is clearly visible. Strength Development workouts build basic strength levels continuously. Customers train in the same style as at the gym but tell us that they get a better feeling in the group and thus more effective training and results.”

    According to Tiia, Strength Development is a great addition to the offerings of fitness clubs. “Traditionally, there are many high-intensity aerobic and HIIT-type workouts as well as circuit-like strength training in the offerings, which do not increase the basic strength levels so effectively.”

    “I hope this type of training is a new trend in group fitness. The training of competitive athletes and regular exercisers has come closer in recent years and I believe that this is one of the trends that further rationalizes people’s training. Strength training is necessary and important for everyone from a public health perspective too.”

    Tiia Törrö

    “I have noticed that it is important for many customers that the Strength Development class is not done to the beat of music. However, many do perform the moves to the beat unconsciously and get a lot of extra energy from it. Strength Development is an exercise that anyone can do, and its effectiveness is based on research. The class is not choreographed in a traditional way, and it is easy to do. I really like the workouts myself. The workouts are sensible, and I can easily attest to their effectiveness myself. Especially the first two programs are great basic strength exercises that I plan to do more myself, especially for developing leg strength.”

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