Les Mills is an international success story - its first gym opened in 1968 and now Les Mills group fitness programmes are seen on 20,000 gym timetables and in homes around the globe. But the world leader in fitness hasn’t forgotten its roots, and has helped to plant 2,500 native trees back here in New Zealand.
Les Mills brings the world’s best music, moves, and instructors together to create life-changing fitness experiences, powered by science. Its purpose is to create a fitter planet, and that extends beyond the physical, says Anna Henwood, Chief Marketing Officer for Les Mills International.
“Working up a sweat is something we’re passionate about, but so is working to preserve and protect our people, our planet, and our communities,” she says. “The health of people and the health of the planet are intrinsically aligned.”
Les Mills partnered with Trees That Count by gifting a native tree to each teammate on their birthday – and with 550 people across nine offices globally, that has added up for community planting groups in Northland, Auckland and Gisborne.
Blue Orb Charitable Trust at Whangaruru North Head received 1,000 of the Les Mills native tree donations. Blue Orb aims to give more New Zealanders the opportunity to see a real-life Kiwi, and has planted nearly 8,000 native trees in total funded through Trees That Count to create new habitats for our beloved native bird.
“Our teammates love receiving this gift on their birthday,” Anna says. “It’s an opportunity to thank each team member for their contribution to what we do, and the gift of a native tree being planted in Aotearoa is special for everyone, no matter where in the world they’re based.”
Les Mills also ran a native tree registry for Earth Day, which saw an additional 63 trees funded through gym members.
Together the 2,500 native trees contributed by Les Mills have helped the company to deliver on its goal of creating a fitter planet.
“We are committed to not only avoiding a negative impact through our own in-house sustainability initiatives and carbon emission offsetting, but also by ensuring we have a positive impact through initiatives like planting native trees with Trees That Count,” says Anna.
“Clean water, fresh air, sustainable food and healthy people – that’s the true essence of what a fitter planet means to us.”