24 Apr:
Jane Fonda’s Workout

Two-time Oscar winner Jane Fonda expanded her repertoire beyond acting and activism into exercise videos on 24th April, 1982, with the release of her bestselling aerobics VHS, “Workout.” 

What seemed like a small venture at the time swiftly captivated the nation, revolutionising fitness trends and catapulting household VCR ownership. Extraordinarily, all profits from the enterprise went to her and her husband’s leftist pressure group, the Campaign for Economic Democracy.

In this episode, Arion, Rebecca and Olly consider how Fonda’s brand of fun, DIY fitness appealed to a generation of women who felt unwelcome in the male environment of 80’s gyms; reveal why filming the classic video was an arduous and exhausting process; and explain why Fonda’s foray into fitness was actually inspired by a broken ankle…

Further Reading:

• ‘30TH ANNIVERSARY OF MY FIRST WORKOUT VIDEO’ (Jane Fonda, 2012): https://www.janefonda.com/2012/04/30th-anniversary-of-my-first-workout-video/

• ‘How ‘Jane Fonda’s Workout’ Conquered the World’ (Mental Floss, 2015): https://www.mentalfloss.com/article/65314/how-jane-fondas-workout-conquered-world

• ‘Jane Fonda’s Original Workout: Follow Along With Classic Step Aerobics’ (Tonic, 2022):