June 26, 2023 — Fitness leader Les Mills today launched “Choose Happy” — a bold new international campaign aimed at helping the 64 percent of Gen Z who aren't regularly exercising to overcome barriers such as intimidation and reap the rewards of an active lifestyle.
The campaign sees the brand partner with breakthrough creative force Brett Goldstein — naming him the first Les Mills Happiness Ambassador — to show that when you choose a workout you enjoy, you work out harder and happier.
The Les Mills “Choose Happy” creative and Happiness Ambassador program are informed by new research that shows Gen Z are seeking greater positivity and choice from their workout experiences. The campaign is underpinned by the brand’s New Zealand roots and its focus on spreading joy through the physiological, mental and social benefits people gain from its science-backed workouts.
“When I traveled to New Zealand, I saw first-hand why the island nation is one of the world’s happiest countries,” noted Goldstein. “Les Mills inserts happiness into all workouts improving your physical and mental health while delivering results. There were good vibes in every gym I visited. It even made me smile. I’m proud to bring the Kiwi-inspired, ‘Choose Happy’ fitness mentality we highlight in the film to the world, so that anyone who dreads working out, can discover it, in fact, can be a key to happiness.”
The brand film, created by nice&frank, which runs internationally, was shot on location in New Zealand with director Andreas Nilsson and begins with Goldstein in a sad, lonely workout world when, in the depths of his darkest training moment, he is transported to one of the happiest places in the world where he participates in a Les Mills class. The film also features female Māori actor Acushla-Tara Kupe making her international commercial debut further showcasing Kiwi culture.
Les Mills is also announcing a unique competition for two fitness fans to win a dream move to New Zealand for three months and become Goldstein’s successors as the next two Happiness Ambassadors. Applicants simply need to visit www.lesmills.com/choosehappy and explain why they should be chosen, with the winners announced via the Les Mills social media accounts on 28th July NZT during LES MILLS LIVE Los Angeles.
Each Ambassador will receive an adventure-filled happy itinerary to the value of NZ$40,000, so that they can master the art of happiness. Following in the footsteps of Goldstein, the Happiness Ambassadors will be welcomed into the Les Mills family for the full Kiwi experience, training with the brand’s world-leading instructors and receiving a personal tour from its founder Phillip Mills, taking in some of New Zealand’s most breathtaking landmarks.
“Choose Happy brings to life Les Mills’ focus on creating science-backed fitness experiences that harness the power of joy and inspire people to work out because they want to instead of feeling like they have to,” said Phillip Mills. “Giving people more choice means a higher likelihood they’ll find the right workout for them, so we offer 25+ fitness programs through 21,000 gyms globally, the LES MILLS+ app and Virtual Reality (VR) to provide workouts anytime, anywhere.”
‘Choose Happy’ celebrates the brand’s focus on the emotional benefits of working out and inspiring an active lifestyle. This positioning is guided in part by new Les Mills research which finds that a more joyful approach is needed to help Gen Z overcome barriers to exercise:
- Give them choice: Among Gen Z who are working out regularly, 64% strongly agree that they like to choose different workouts, as well as discover new ones.
- Dial-up the happy: Those who are regularly exercising prefer more positive workout experiences, with 68% reporting they’re more likely to work out in places with good energy.
- Tone Can Turn-Off: Nearly half (46%) of Gen Z see fitness advertising focused on the grit and grind of exercising as a turn-off.
About Les Mills
Les Mills is the global leader in group fitness and creator of over 25 programs available in leading fitness facilities around the world. Les Mills programs include the world’s first group exercise resistance training workout BODYPUMP™, BODYCOMBAT™ (martial arts), RPM™ (indoor cycling), BODYBALANCE™ (yoga), LES MILLS GRIT™ (30-minute high-intensity interval training) and the revolutionary immersive cycle experience, THE TRIP™. Each workout is refreshed and updated with new choreography and music every three months.
The company was founded by Les Mills — a four-time Olympian and head coach of New Zealand’s track and field team — who opened his first gym in 1968 with the aim of taking elite sports training to the masses. Today, Les Mills workouts are delivered by 130,000 certified instructors in 21,000 clubs across 100 countries, as well as via the LES MILLS+ streaming platform and Virtual Reality (VR).