What’s it Like Behind the Scenes Filming a Fitness Show?

by Suzanne Andrews

As the executive producer of Functional Fitness with Suzanne Andrews®, a PBS TV series broadcast throughout the US and Canada, I don’t see places, I see locations.  I didn’t realize how evident this was until I was looking at a photo of my friend’s daughter and my eyes lit up.  The location was filled with an array of colorful wildflowers.  My friend and colleague, physical therapy practitioner and rehab director, Charlene (who guest-starred on the first series of Functional Fitness with Suzanne Andrews®) saw the gleam in my eye and said, “I know, it would make a great location.” 

And the weather is not merely a forecast.  When shooting at outdoor locations, our shoots live and die by the weather.  We love a cloudy day, but loathe the rain!  What people see as beautiful trees, we see objects that make shadows on our faces so bad the video won’t pass the labor intensive frame by frame inspection by the stations quality assurance engineer.  

There’s a lot of thought that goes into finding the perfect location.  If I’m going to speak on camera, the place must be very quiet.  If we’re filming at the beach and the waves are too loud, I have to do a voiceover in post-production which adds considerable time and expense. 

Some places are worth doing a voiceover as long as the location isn’t populated. When we filmed Arthritis Walking Workout at Butchart Gardens in Brentwood Bay, British Columbia, Canada, (most beautiful gardens in North America), we began filming at dawn before the place was open to the public.  Unbeknownst to us, there were gardeners in the background who decided to exercise along with us!  It took 40 hours of editing to make them disappear from the shot. 

We’ve filmed in the Texas country side, the beautiful mountains in Canada, and fabulous gardens throughout the US.  Our newest DVD, Suzanne Andrews Get Stronger Bones for Osteoporosis was inspired by the stunning settings of the Estate on the Halifax in Port Orange, Florida and the Waldorf Astoria in Boca Raton, Florida.  I love exercising outdoors- the scenery is so motivating. But during the cold winter months, you can’t always get outdoors and yet you can’t let your workout go by the wayside.  Your body needs to be healthy whether it’s cold, raining or snowing. The best gift of all is your health. By not waiting for tomorrow, you gift yourself with the present!

Sending you love and healthiest blessings this holiday season!

Suzanne Andrews is a licensed Occupational Therapy Clinician with 30 years exercise expertise. Airing to over 49 million on Public Television, Suzanne Andrews, a licensed Occupational Therapy Clinician, (they specialize in function) creates evidenced based fitness programs for specific health conditions. Originally created in 2008 with it’s first run on WDSC TV, Functional Fitness with Suzanne Andrews broadcasts on 113 Public Television stations.

By Customer Service | | fitness, Functional Fitness, Suzanne Andrews, Weekly Blog |
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