Auckland’s professional sports teams are united in their support of the World’s Biggest Bootcamp at Eden Park – an event that aims to encourage healthy living and highlight the obesity epidemic afflicting many of New Zealand’s communities.
In what is surely an unprecedented show of cross-code unity, the Blues (rugby), Warriors (league), Breakers (basketball), Aces (cricket), Tuatara (baseball) and Mystics and Stars (netball) have all confirmed their support for the event.
Hosted by former celebrity boxer turned health campaigner David ‘Brown Buttabean’ Letele, the World’s Biggest Bootcamp is calling on Aucklanders to head to Eden Park on Sunday February 24 to break the world record for the most people performing simultaneously performing a squat.
The current record is 2812, set by Szkola Wychowania Fizycznego I Sportu UAM - the department of physical education and sport at Poland’s Poznan University – on May 10, 2017.
Take part in the World’s Biggest Boot Camp
Where: Eden Park
When: Sunday, February 24, gates open at 10.00am for an 11.00am start
Who: Up to 20,000 Kiwis on the Eden Park pitch
What: A free ‘boot camp’ exercise set to feature a world record attempt for most people performing a simultaneous frog squat.
How to be a part of it: Visit facebook.com/brownbuttabean click on the event page and confirm your attendance - or simply turn up on the day. It’s as easy as that.
Be in to win: Register a group of 20 or more and be in to win a corporate box at a Blues game hosted by Keven Mealamu.
Email firstname.lastname@example.org with your team’s details to go into the draw.
Support from Auckland's teams
Co-captain Patrick Tuipulotu confirmed the Blues are right behind an event that will take place on the hallowed pitch on which the club has claimed three Super Rugby titles.
“Everyone at the Blues supports David and what he’s trying to achieve,” Tuipulotu said.
“I know in my Polynesian community, for a lot of people it’s really challenging to live a healthy lifestyle. The positive benefits of being active can be life-changing so we’re really pleased to get behind this event, and help set a world record!”
Blues management have confirmed that a delegation of players and staff will attend the bootcamp.
Tuipuloptu’s support was echoed by Warriors captain – and reigning NRL Dally M medallist – Roger Tuivasa-Sheck.
“As a club we are right behind David Letele and everyone who is making this happen,” Tuivasa-Sheck said. “It is a great idea and should be heaps of fun.
“It’s all about getting people more active and staying healthy so it would be great to see a huge turnout there.”
The SKYCITY Breakers may be locked in a mighty struggle to crack the NBL playoffs as their regular season enters its final weeks, however that hasn’t stopped the ANBL franchise throwing its support behind the WBBC.
General Manager Dillon Boucher said the club was a keen advocate of promoting health, well-being and participation in sports and fitness and was looking forward to seeing a big turnout at Eden Park on February 24.
“We are happy to support such a great initiative and help spread the positive message about the advantages of living healthy and active lifestyles,” Boucher said.
Breakers CEO and owner Matt Walsh is also looking forward to attending the event and is encouraging all Breakers fans to get out and join him at Eden Park.
“The SKYCITY Breakers love getting behind and endorsing events like The World’s Biggest Bootcamp. My family and I are excited about getting the chance to exercise on Auckland’s famous Eden Park field and hope to be joined by Breakers fans from all over the city at what will be a fantastic event.”
Netball’s Mystics and Stars will be fully committed to the opening round of ANZ premiership matches on a blockbuster day for the sport on February 24, however both have pledged their support for the WBBC and are encouraging those fans that can’t make it to Hamilton to get along to Eden Park.
“There are so many things to be excited about with Eden Park opening their gates for the Biggest Boot Camp on earth,” Mystics chief executive Nicole Spratt said.
“Whilst we cannot be there on the day – its game day for us - we would love to see everyone who can participate join in this awesome event. Being active and having a lifetime of participation in sport and activity can only energise us all.”
Auckland Cricket’s Aces have a full-on few days of their own on their hands heading into the WBBC, with a four-day Plunket Shield match against the Otago Volts scheduled to finish on the day of the bootcamp.
Auckland Cricket chief executive Iain Laxon said that, if the Aces finished their match in time, they will pitch up to the bootcamp quite literally with their boots on. If the Aces’ match is still in progress, he hoped bootcampers would head over to the Outer Oval to support the team.
“We’re delighted to lend Auckland Cricket and the Aces support to David’s bootcamp mission,” Laxon said.
“The Aces will be doing their own boot camp that weekend in a Plunket Shield game against the Otago Volts, but we hope everybody swings behind what is a great idea and highlights a real issue in our society. We wish David all the best, and encourage anyone who needs some entertainment afterwards to wander across to the Outer Oval and catch the Aces in action!”
Auckland Tuatara inaugural general manager Ryan Flynn said that, while the club’s players were flung far and wide during the club’s off-season, the Tuatara would be encouraging the city’s baseball community to get along to Eden Park.
“We would love to see the baseball community of Auckland get out and support such a great initiative,” Flynn said.
“Wouldn’t it be amazing to say you were part of a world record? Not only will you be able to do that, but you will be doing something that will help make lives healthier. The Tuatara players are spread far and wide right now but keep an eye out on the day as they will be doing their part from afar via social media.”
Making a difference
Letele said he was overwhelmed by the united support of Auckland’s sports teams.
“This is just incredible,” Letele said. “To have the backing of all these sporting legends and Auckland’s wider sporting community is both very encouraging and very humbling.
“The World’s Biggest Bootcamp is going to be epic. It’s going to be great fun - and it is going to help make a real difference to a whole bunch of people struggling with their health due to the effects of obesity. For many, it will be quite literally the first step toward a healthier, happier life.”
A non-profit event delivered by the Just Move Charitable Trust, the World’s Biggest Boot Camp is supported by Nutribullet, SKYCITY, thl, DFM and Eden Park.
About David Letele
David Letele is living, breathing proof that obesity can be overcome – and an inspiration to thousands of Kiwis.
Once weighing in at 210 kilograms, Letele now weighs less than half of that. He achieved his transformation purely through hard work and dedication to his goal of turning his life around. He now works tirelessly to motivate others dealing with the challenges of obesity. His private Facebook group has over 11,000 members, many of whom have achieved life-changing levels of weight loss and improved cardiovascular fitness.
David is currently working with social service providers and funders across Auckland to deliver his highly effective pilot programme to improve the health outcomes for morbidly obese people in South Auckland.
BBM’s leadership team deliver free bootcamps across Auckland almost every day of the week, providing inspiration and support to thousands of Kiwis.