Prepare to be inspired all over again - because This Girl Can is back, and it's bigger, better and more empowering than ever.
Trending on Twitter within seconds of launching today, it's the advert everyone's talking about, and features a diverse range of real women getting active, from 15-year-old trampolinist, Cerys, to 69-year-old outdoor swimmer Sue. The full 90-second advert is accompanied by the narration of the late great poet Maya Angelou reading her iconic poem, Phenomenal Woman.
Guaranteed to make you laugh, cry with joy and want to throw on some trainers immediately, the campaign is determined to show women that the benefits of exercise are for everyone, no matter what your age, body shape or ability.
Showing women sweat, shake, punch, jiggle, run, skate, swim, kick and laugh, Angelou's voice powerfully declares over the footage:
"It’s in the reach of my arms,
The span of my hips,
The stride of my step,
The curl of my lips.
I’m a woman,
It's enough to make you want to stand up, whoop with delight and high-five the TV. No wonder the campaign, which first launched in 2015, has seen 2.8 million women get active as a result.
And now, This Girl Can is determined to get millions more women moving, with an extra-important message added this time round too - that it's OK to take a break.
"It's something women don’t usually hear, that it’s OK to take a break, to have a week off, to walk, not run," says Sport England CEO Jennie Price. "Many of the women we’ve featured talk about stopping, then starting again. It can feel like the hardest thing in the world to return after a few weeks off, but we want to say it’s normal to take a break, but that needn’t stop you for good."
One of the stars of the new advert is 29-year-old roller derby skater Lydia. "I never liked sport growing up. And being 4ft 10in, doing things like netball was pretty hideous," she says. However, after going to a roller derby match, she decided to give it a try - and despite not knowing what she was doing at first, she's now toured internationally with the team.
"It's easy to look at other people and think everyone else is finding exercise easy, but actually everyone struggles," she says. "I realised it's OK to be crap! But as you get better, you realise those people who you thought found it so easy started in the same position too, and that you will also improve over time."
And seeing progress isn't the only motivation for Lydia: "Part of what made me keep going is this amazing group of friends. Amazing women who I never would have met anywhere else."
And that's something This Girl Can shows so well - the beautiful camaraderie of women supporting each other, highlighting that exercise is the perfect excuse to have a laugh, meet new people, and create a supportive network.
Of course, it can also be an amazing way to challenge yourself and find confidence, as, 39-year-old Bisi, another of the advert's stars, shows. Bisi got back into exercise after a 20-year break and can be seen building up strength in the gym and leg-pressing 140kg, with the slogan on her poster saying "Girl. Power".
"As I got older I totally forgot about sport. Work got too busy. I wasn't interested," she says. "Then one day I went to the gym for a trial. I couldn't stop sweating, I was out of breath, but I went back... and I love it." Her message? "Don't feel intimated. Go for it. When I started I was scared, but now I'm brilliant. I'm stronger, I'm fitter. I'm fabulous."
So if you think exercise isn't for you, or you're looking for a bit of motivation to keep going, you're going to want to watch this. The advert screens tonight (Friday 24th) on ITV at 7.45pm, but you can get your fix right here:
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