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BodyPump is a weight-based group-fitness program, created and distributed globally by Les Mills International. Every week 5.5 million people attend a Les Mills class in 17,500 licensed health clubs in over 100 countries.[1]

In January 2017 BodyPump celebrated its 100th release (25 years) from centres all over the world

The first BodyPump classes were created by Phillip Mills and his wife Dr Jackie Mills in December 1991 in Auckland, New Zealand. According to Dr Jackie Mills the idea was to attract men into the group fitness studio while also breaking down the stigma that women shouldn’t, or couldn’t, do weight training.[2]


BodyPump classes are 59 minutes long and contain eight separate muscle-group specific songs or "tracks" along with an opening warm up track and closing cool-down track. There are also 45-minute and 30-minute class formats.[3]

The classes are performed to music using free weights-plates, barbells and an aerobic step. Participants choose their weights based on the exercise and their personal goals. Major muscle groups are worked via series of compound and isolation-based exercises including squats, presses, dead lifts. The focus is towards muscle endurance by moving light weights at high repetitions, what Les Mills calls the Rep Effect.[4]


In 2011 Les Mills introduced the Smartbar, a barbell designed for BodyPump workouts.[5]


  1. ^ "All the right moves". New Zealand Trade & Enterprise. March 2015. 
  2. ^ "A workout with heritage". Les Mills. March 2016. 
  3. ^ "BODYPUMP site". Les Mills. 
  4. ^ Smith, Jessica (July 2001). "Safety Principles of BodyPump". American Fitness. 
  5. ^ "Working out the workout with Les Mills' Smartbar". Idealog. February 2013. 

Further reading[edit]

  • Lythe J., Pfitzinger, P. Caloric expenditure and aerobic demand of Bodystep, Bodyattack, Bodycombat and RPM. Auckland: UniSports Centre for Sport Performance, University of Auckland, New Zealand, 1999:15.
  • Lythe, J., Pfitzinger, P. and Ho, D. The Physical and Psychological Response to 13 weeks of Structured Group-fitness Exercise in Untrained Individuals. Auckland: UniSports Centre for Sport Performance, University of Auckland, New Zealand, 2000:33.
  • Felstead, Bishop, Fuller, Jewson, Lee, Unwin. Moving to the music: Learning processes, training and productive systems - the case of exercise to music instruction. London, United Kingdom, 2006:8