// Taking on all contenders at the 2011 World Sport Aerobics Championships

A force to be reckoned with in the world of Sport Aerobics, the Australian team is playing on home turf as the World Championships hit Queensland’s Broadbeach. What better reason for lovers of group ex to head to the Gold Coast this spring, asks Roxanne Thew?

Grace Sutherland in routine starting position

They are coming… Thousands of the world’s best Sport Aerobics, fitness, step and hip hop athletes are about to descend on Queensland to fight for the title of World Champions in three different age groups and across multiple categories.

As they arrive they will be warmly greeted by the Australian team who will be in lockdown on the Gold Coast’s Broadbeach, ready to take on all comers as they aim for Gold!

The precision of the Russian athletes; the focus of the Czechs; the determination of the South Africans; the pizzazz of the Malaysians. Can they match the hunger to win – and the pride – of the Aussies?

Sport Aerobics’ origins are in the fitness industry of the 1980s, when instructor was pitted against instructor, gym against gym. Battled out in a seven metre square arena, the pure energy of sports aerobics has been witnessed by thousands every year at the National Championships and at the World Championships around the globe. And now, with the World’s on our own shores, you can experience it for yourself – and take back the inspiration to your group exercise classes.

While the Europeans are dominant in the disciplines (Sport Aerobics, Fitness, Step and Hip Hop), don’t think for a moment that the Aussies are in the back seat! Australia’s Brenton Andreoli currently holds the title of World Champion with Senior Men’s, and he’s back this year to defend his title with Victorian stable mate Cameron Brown, who took the national title out from under him at the National Championships in July this year (and who is set to cause an upset at Worlds – gotta love the underdog!).

Other contenders for Gold include Kenji Fujihara in the Junior Individual Men’s, and numerous Silver and Bronze 2010 Medalists including Grace Sutherland and Steph Keily in Junior Women, Brenton Andreoli and Emily Daniels in Mixed Pairs, and the dynamic Synergy in the Senior Fitness teams.

A question being pondered by many in the Sport Aerobics’ world is who will take the place of talented Female Individual World Champion Kylie Thomas, who retired in 2010. Kylie now heads the team as the Australian National Coach, bringing her unparalleled experience and unique psychology to the whole team. Contenders include the sensational Allira Bull from Newcastle, the energetic Emily Daniels from Victoria and Cass Scully, the dynamo from north coast NSW who has come so close to the podium and knows the thrill of the chase and the despair of defeat, but who has the potential to turn it all around to go for Gold.

Behind these amazing athletes are some seasoned, and some new, recruits who have fought their way onto the team through the prestigious State and National Events. There are step teams from VIC and NSW, with Newcastle Grammar’s high school students making the World team and putting Newcastle on the map in the international arena. There is the new dynamic pair of Cameron and Allira, set to reignite the legend of Dirty Dancing and the electrifying Sydney Fitness with their Kill Bill routine. In the Hip Hop categories, crews from Victoria, QLD and SA are ready to take on the best from South Africa. Russia, Belgium and New Zealand!

The New Zealand national team consists of sport aerobics individual athletes, triples, fitness teams and hip hop crews, and we hear they are good – really good! However, the ANZAC alliance is strong and we are united on this one: if we cannot win, then we will cheer if NZ does, and vice versa!

If you want to witness 12 different countries battle it out in the dynamic arena of Sport Aerobics, with its massive air jumps, splits, one-arm one-leg pushups and ridiculously easy smiles at 155 bpm, the 2011 FISAF Worlds Championships on the Gold Coast awaits you.

If you want to be blown away by precision, speed and complexity on a step that will leave you looking for the engineer that services these almost robotic athletes, the 2011 FISAF Worlds Championships on the Gold Coast awaits you.

If you want to feel the energy hit you in the face as the fitness teams move every 2-4 beats of music for two full minutes at insane speed in close proximity to each other, and to experience the sheer pleasure of watching the world’s best hip hop crews get loose and low, the 2011 FISAF Worlds Championships on the Gold Coast awaits you.

Where, when and how?

If you want to come and see what all the excitement is about, head to the Gold Coast Convention and Exhibition Centre at Broadbeach, QLD, between Tuesday 18 and Saturday 22 October.

Tickets can be obtained by emailing info@fisafaustralia.com or go to www.fisafaustralia.com and download the Spectator Tickets Excel  document on the bottom of the Worlds 2011 page that lets you book tickets – alternatively you can call 07 5442 7731 with any enquiries. Tickets will be available at the door but will be limited and a little more expensive than pre-sold, so it’s advisable to book in advance. Who doesn’t want an excuse for a few days on the Gold Coast in spring?

Think of it as personal development – watch the best and be inspired. Who knows where it may lead you? There are career paths open for fitness professionals in coaching and of course the thrill of competing is absolutely enormous. It could be you in a few year’s time sporting the green and gold tracksuit, proudly supporting everything the Aussie fitness industry represents!

Roxanne Thew
As CEO of TFT Sports and Event Management, a company that proudly owns FISAF Australia (www.fisafaustralia.com) and Schoolaerobics (www.schoolaerobics.com.au), Roxanne provides athletes and fitness professionals Australia-wide with an avenue for fitness, competition and training. During a fitness industry career spanning more than 25 years, she has been an athlete, trainer, club owner and a presenter. For more information, email info@fisafaustralia.com or call 07 5442 7731.