Before we get started, we’d like to clarify that we’re not suggesting watching a movie about physical activity is the same thing as doing it! We know you know this (although yes, you might have sweated it out through some thrillers in your time!). But stories we hear – in person, in books, or in movies – can inspire us to reach that little bit further, and push that little bit harder, to achieve something truly amazing.
Lights, camera, action: our 12WBT Movie Night eBook has all your favourite recipes, without the high calories.
Our Top 10 Movies to Get You Moving
Here are our top picks, as voted by the 12WBT team. All in moderation, of course, and opt for popcorn without all the butter and salt!
1. Cool Runnings
Got gold medal dreams? Then this one’s for you! You’ll be cheering at your TV as you follow four unlikely athletes and one disgraced coach from their sunny homeland to the wonderfully icy Canada to compete in a totally unfamiliar sport – bobsledding! They say it’s loosely inspired by a true story, so there’s hope for us all! If you’re feeling ultra-inspired, check out the Olympic sports at Rio in 2016 in case – table tennis, anyone?!
2. Karate Kid
We all remember “wax on, wax off” (great for toning those arms, by the way!), right?
High school kid Daniel LaRusso attracts the attention of the not-so-nice ‘Cobra Kai’ karate gang, and their head bully Johnny Lawrence. The humble handyman from Daniel’s building, who thankfully happens to be Mr Miyagi, opens a can of whoopass on five of the Cobra Kai crew in Daniel’s defense. Daniel (sometimes reluctantly) puts in the hard yards to compete against Johnny at the All-Valley Karate Tournament.
Want to try your own hand at karate? How about rounding up some pals and checking out a self defence class?
3. Bring it On
Warm up your spirit fingers and embrace your inner cheerleader for this feisty teen clash between the five-time champs, the Toros, and the underdogs, the Compton Clovers.
Probably best not to try any of the backflips in your lounge room, but we wholeheartedly support the development of your very own cheer routine. Shout it like you mean it!
4. A League of Their Own
Nothing is peachy keen when the excitable Kit Keller and her less-interested older sister Dottie Hinson join the Rockford Peaches baseball team in 1943. The women’s league, which was hoped to be the answer to the troubled Major League Baseball during WW1, was initially a mega flop.
As attention on the league heats up, so too does the tension between Dottie and Kit, resulting in Kit being traded to another team. Ouch! Have a little sibling rivalry of your own? Maybe it’s time to have a little fun on the pitch (or court or field) and settle the score!
5. Dirty Dancing
We know a lot of you have had The Time of Your Life with 12WBT, so why not try some dirty dancing next?!
Frances ‘Baby’ Grey is holidaying at a family resort when dance instructor Johnny Castle opens her eyes to a world of bumping and grinding. Circumstances lead them to dancing together at the resort’s final talent show of the season, but OMG will Baby be able to make the lift?! (Oh, spoiler in the image! Don’t scroll back up!)
6. Bend it Like Beckham
Girl hearts football. Girl’s parents tell her she can’t play football because she’s a girl. Girl secretly does it anyway. And rocks at it!
And by the way, we say ‘football’, you might say ‘soccer’, but you get the drift.
7. The Blind Side
What a tear jerker! Based on the true-story of American NFL player Michael ‘Big Mike’ Oher, we watch as his tides turn, with some support from strong-minded woman Leigh Anne Tuohy. Despite his troubled upcoming and poor academic history, Big Mike’s athletic ability leads him to being enrolled in Wingate Christian School where things look up, both on and off the football field.
This list would not be complete without the rags to riches story of Rocky ‘The Italian Stallion’ Balboa. After the scheduled opponent in a boxing match with World Heavyweight Champion Apollo Creed has to pull out – and no big-name replacements available for the New Year’s Day match – local amateur, and loan shark enforcer, Rocky becomes the unlikely ring-in. Rocky trains like a demon and sweats it out to rise to the challenge.
This is a useful lesson in using everyday things to spice up your training!
9. Whip It
Small town misfit, and the daughter of a beauty queen, Bliss Cavendar was a little lost in life. A chance encounter with some roller derby team members sparks an intrigue that sees her find a new passion, taking her all the way to the roller derby championships!
And yes, roller derby is something you can actually do in Oz! Check out Roller Derby Australia’s league finder.
10. Strictly Ballroom
A much-needed Aussie injection to the list!
After losing his ballroom dancing partner Liz Holt following some unorthodox moves on the dance floor, Scott Hastings’ chances of success at the Pan-Pacific Grand Prix Dancing Championships are looking grim. Enter frumpy newbie, Fran, who embraces Scott’s unique approach to dance, and has a red-hot-crack at the championships with him by her side.
Phew… What a list! Do you have an all-time fave that inspires you? If so, tell us below!