Corrah Phillips, the teenage choreographer of Les Mills’ BORN TO MOVE™, is a dancing, snowboarding billboard for the benefits of being active from a young age.
When she’s not doing schoolwork, or working on the choreography for the next BORN TO MOVE™ release, Corrah is hitting the slopes – she is New Zealand’s 2014 National Junior snowboarding champion.
For Corrah, sport is not just a passion but an important “let out” from the everyday stresses that school and life bring. It’s this positive side effect of being active that she wants more young people to experience, and one of the main reasons she loves being involved with BORN TO MOVE™.
Corrah says her role as a BORN TO MOVE™ choreographer is a natural fit, but it’s not something she ever planned.
Growing up in semi-rural New Zealand, she recalls walking and swimming “really young” in order to keep up with her brother Taine, before following him into what was then his favourite hobby – Tae Kwon Do. She later took up hip-hop dance.
“When we were little we lived in a really cool place – we had a huge paddock, really cool playground, swimming pool, bikes – just everything. So we got really active. And having Taine as an older brother, you had to be active. He always wanted to do something!”
Today, Corrah and Taine are still a strong team. They both choose the tracks and develop the choreography for BORN TO MOVE™ releases, while all the time checking in with each other that their peers will feel comfortable with their choices of music and moves.
Corrah rates lack of self-confidence as one of the main barriers to young people being active – along with more obvious hurdles like lack of parental support or access to a gym.
“Kids can get really self-conscious doing sports if they have no coordination – especially at my age. Most of the girls in my class won’t even take part in physical education because they’re so self-conscious.”
“I just want BORN TO MOVE™ participants to feel real comfortable and feel that they’re learning something – not just because their parents want them to, but because they enjoy getting active and developing fundamental skills.
“What I realize is that kids just enjoy movement – it doesn’t need to be too technical or changing all the time. They just want a simple base; they just want to move.”