Iconic 90s 'Push Play' campaign relaunched to help NZ's lack of exercise post-COVID

90s 25/05/2022

Remember those classic 'Push Play' ads from the 90s? Well, they're back! 

Sport New Zealand has relaunched the iconic campaign many of us will remember from the 1990s after it was revealed New Zealanders are moving their bodies way less since the COVID-19 pandemic hit. 

New research from Sport NZ’s Active NZ survey shows that physical activity amongst Kiwis dropped massively in the first year of the pandemic, with adults doing 16% fewer hours. 

Those rates of exercise have rebounded a little bit in recent times, but it's clear that many of us are still struggling to get back into the swing of things and lacking in motivation. 

Back in the day, the 'Push Play' campaign encouraged Kiwis to get active for 30 minutes a day, but the refresh for 2022 recognises that we all have different approaches to exercise. 

This time around, it doesn't matter how you move or for how long - whether it's a quick walk to the dairy to grab some milk or chasing the kids around the backyard for 10 minutes, it all adds up. 

The new campaign also features some of the celebs that starred in the original commercials - including Petra Bagust, who says she still feels the benefits of getting moving 23 years later. 

"How we 'Push Play changes' throughout our lives, just like we do, and of course, the lifestyle changes we went through in Covid had a massive impact on our routines," she said. 

It’s not necessarily about committing to a lofty fitness goal, this is about day to day health and reaping the mental, physical and emotional benefits of being more active, more often.

Tawera Nikau and Monty Betham are also Push Play ambassadors, encouraging Kiwis to find their own ways of moving and just get started.