Review: All Pump
Short all body workout - get nearly everything worked well in 40 mins.
W/U: about 3 mins, side steps, knee ups, leg sides
Multijoint: step one leg on 10 inch step to knee up, extend out twice with front delt raise, step down. Repeat. Do both sides. There were also side squats with lateral side raises (ie: warming up those legs for what comes next.)
Legs: count of 16 squats, curtsy dips 8 each side, back to 16 squats .. repeat until legs won't hold any more.
Bi's and Tri's: nice change of doing bicep work while sitting in a decline position on the step - get some core work in there. Tri's are rear extensions, then set of 8 tricep pushups.
Chest & Back: pushups off step with one hand (I used my pushup bars instead to go easier on my wrists.) Back was different using stability ball to maintain balance in a flat back position. Arm in front, pull up and rotate arm, back down. Then lat raises after. Repeat other side.
Core: roll in planks. roll in side to side. Then sit on step and do tucks/extensions. Then sit on step, hold stability ball over head, and do 'sunshines', when you drop ball to left, center, right, center, etc. Those felt nice and were different. (or were the sunshines and tucks reveresed? Can't remember for sure.)
Nice short stretch at the end. Amy gave little stretch breaks between each exercise. I like the pace - it left plenty of time to do equiptment changes, or catch a water break. I feel solidly worked, but I would like to see pile squats for inner thighs or perhaps floorwork for legs, as well as rear delt work, and possibly some calf work. That was about all I felt was neglected.
I'll use this - it would be great as an addon to a 30 min cardio (like TJ).
I really liked her style - she is tough but encouraging. She does whoop a lot, but she says she'll be editing these out of future workouts.
Kristen has broken down this workout, so I'll just add a couple of comments. This is 40 min. well spent. My legs were on fire! My weights were heavy enough that I worked to failure on most body parts. (There's shoulder work only in the warm-up and my shoulders were done!) 10-15 additional minutes for some floorwork (ouch!) and a bit more for the upper body, especially the chest and back, would have made this a better buy for the $$ spent. Still, I'm happy with it. It's definitely an endurance workout and when I got through, my face was beet red, as if I'd just done IMAX 2. I don't know why...There were plenty of breaks for stretching and such.
Music? I can't even remember the music. Nothing exciting, but apparently, nothing offensive either.
There was much talk of 'whoo'ing on the forum. I noticed it in the previews, but I didn't while doing the workout. I think when Amy was 'whoo'ing, I was #@$*ing. An honor I usually save for Cathe.
I feet that this workout has enough moves that are different from other endurance workouts to make it a good addition to my collection. I'm looking forward to more from this instructor.
Amy's an inspiration. I like that she's happy doing her workouts and is encouraging, but not a cheerleader. I don't notice cueing like other folks, but as far as I can tell, Amy's is right on the money...at least for me.
Amy is very natural and easy in front of the camera. The infamous "Woo's" are more of a vocal sound during exhale than an "I'm having SO much fun!!" sound, and once I realized that I no longer heard them.
The workout is 40 minutes long and the beat is faster than most traditional strength training workouts which I liked. No boring, endless sets of reps while standing there looking into space! Amy mixes it up with tempo changes and variations, all while staying positive and encouraging without sounding scripted or uncomfortable.
Five background exercisers join her and I like how the camera stays on HER or the whole gang. No strange side or face shots just when you need to see what Amy is doing. This is a very well-produced workout.
They use a 10 inch step (as a weight bench), five, eight and ten pound dumbbells, a 40# barbell, and a stability ball. The warmup is about four minutes long and is basic back and forth movement with knee lifts and things, and a short stretch afterwards.
The first move is the only time we're stepping on and off the step and it's slow. With five pound weights you step onto the bench, then extend the opposite leg from the knee while doing front delt raises. After those sets you do two side squats, alternating sides, while simultaneously doing lateral delt lifts. Your shoulders will burn by the end of this!
Then we place one heel on a five pound weight and alternate split stance static lunges while holding 10 pound weights, changing feet as we change sides. This really hits the quads!! We stretch afterwards.
Next come the barbell squats. Warning ... she does three fast sets 16, alternating with 8 fast curtsy dips first to one side then the other. The last set of cursy dips is only 4 on each side but by that time ANY weight you are holding is going to be heavy, so be careful choosing your weight. I picked up my 18 pound body bar since I didn't have my barbell ready, and that was easy, but 40# would have been too much for me.
Then we place a mat on the step and sit on it in an incline, hugging the sides with our legs and holding ten pound weights for bicep work. Killer! We alternate hammer curls with individual hammer curls fast, then to regular curls, then fast hammer curls again. The tens were more than enough weight for me, and I could really feel my abs too.
Next we kneel on the step and use eight pound weights for alternating triceps kickbacks which again are fast, then we put the weights on the step in front of us in an "A" and do triceps pushups. Burn! Then we stretch.
Uneven pushups with one hand off and one hand on the step are next. They are all on their toes, they do ten on each side, and they're fast.
Then we get the ball and use it to balance one hand on while we do a series of lat rows with the other, using positions I've never seen before. I could feel my lats though, and I didn't see anything I would consider bad or dangerous form, so that was nice to learn of a new variation for this exercise.
We then do tuck-in's while in a plank with the shins on the ball, then do them again but this time bringing our knees to the side, alternating sides.
We then sit on the step and do what Amy calls "sunshines", which consist of you in an incline and taking the ball up over your head first to one side, and then to the other. It works the obliques. The final exercise is 24 FAST kickouts - incline position with your hands on the back of the step, and you kick your legs in and out. You WILL feel your abs. Then the final stretch.
I give this a solid A!
May 14, 2006
This video is only 40 minutes but intense. It seems like a lot of the exercises really use core work and serve multiple purposes. Some of them require more balance than I have. A lot of stability ball work at the end which was really good. I will do this work regularly, although I will also be doing other videos with more traditional weight training as well.
Amy is pretty good in this video, a little overly enthusiastic and chatty at times.
This is a really interesting collection of exercises - but 40 minutes total run time means only about 30 minutes of exercise.
I will heavy up more on the leg exercises in the future (like she does).
I tacked on 20 minutes of the hollywood trainer's crosstraining dvd (Cardio sculpt and kickboxing segments) to make this a longer workout.
But really, I want my strength workout to be a strength workout, so I think i'd have to do something where I add more work per body part to really make this longer endurance workout.
I really enjoy Amy in this workout. She is friendly and nice without seeming in any way like it's artificial or condescending.
She does whoo a bit, but it seems natural to me, and doesn't bug me at all.
This workout has already been reviewed and talked about to no end. I will just give my impressions after doing this workout several times.
This is a 40 minute strength workout. Which is short for total body strength training. I am used to Cathe, Gin, and Jari. Cathe being my main instructor for strength training workouts.
Equipment needed: plate-loaded bar, stability ball, several dumbbells, step and mat.
The set of this workout looks like a room in a house. Well lit and open with windows. But small. And too many exercisers made the room look smaller. This would not have upset me if I felt the workout was a good workout.
I found the exercisers to be working hard and cheerful. Amy didn't woo hoo as much as I thought she would from other people's comments. I felt she was working hard and her voice was pleasant.
After doing this workout the first time I felt that my upper body didn't get a full workout. So I ended up having to do one of my other upper body only strength workouts after it. This upset me.
I gave this workout a few more times just to see if I felt the same about the lack of upper body work. Everytime I realized that this workout lacks sufficient upper body work. This was a disappointing revelation.
Conclusion: I was disappointed with this workout. I feel this workout lacks enough upper body work to be useful to me. I cannot see myself doing this workout one more time even for the lower body work. I have better lower body workouts to choose from.
I am grateful I didn't pay full price or Amy's price for this one. I will sell this one on Ebay.
It is with great regret I had this experience because I heard so many good things about Amy and I waited so long to be able to get this workout and do it.
Amy is pleasant and very energetic.
September 6, 2006
This was my first Amy Bento video, and it was a bit different than I thought. From viewing the clip, I had been expecting a lot of compound moves and thought that the workout would have a functional fitness feel. This was true a bit, especially with the opening move (see below), but overall, this workout wound up feeling like a shorter, slightly intense version of a Cathe strength workout to me, right down to the use of a lot of equipment (barbell, 2 sets of dumbbells, step, stability ball).
This DVD is well-chaptered; I've listed the chapters below and added my own descriptions after.
Warm-Up. Includes basic moves such as shrugs, squats, and knee ups. Ends with a series of stretches held for a nice long, slow 4-count.
Multi-Joint. This is a compound move: holding light dumbbells, you step up with one foot on the step, raise the other knee in the air, and extend that leg twice while doing a front raise. Amy does several sets on both legs. She also does a series of squats with lateral side raises that really fried my shoulders!
Legs. Amy begins with a split lunge with one heel on a small dumbbell (Cathe does this move in Push Pull). Next comes a barbell squat series which I found very challenging due to the high number of reps: she does 15 squats in the center, then 8 cursey dips to each side; she repeats the sequence once the same and once with half as many reps.
BIs and TRIs. Amy does several variations of bicep curls (hammers, center, and concentration) while seated in a v-sit position on the step, so you work your core as well. Tricep work includes kickbacks and tricep push-ups.
Chest and Back. With one hand on step, Amy does a row using arm rotation followed by a lateral raise. She also does a similar sequence with one hand on the stability ball.
Core Work. Beginning with your feet on the stability ball, you'll do tough tuck-ins, first just in and out, then bringing your knees from side-to-side--whew! You'll also place your elbows on the ball and roll them in and out for the core. Then it's back to a v-sit position on the step for "sunshines," moving the ball in a rainbow overhead, and several quick sets of v-sits in and out to finish.
Cooldown. Amy offers a nice series of stretches, mainly for the upper body (the lower body is stretched between sets).
Overall, I really enjoyed this workout. Although Amy worked me hard--especially with that tough squat segment!--because she pauses to stretch between virtually every exercise, I never felt overwhelmed or out of breath. I also liked how she added in some unique variations on moves and emphasized the core as well. Another reviewer felt that this workout was weak on upper body work, but I didn't feel that way at all; if anything, I'd say there weren't many different moves for the legs, although what Amy did include was challenging enough for me.
I'd rate this workout at an intermediate level, and I'd recommend it to someone who likes a bit of variety in their strength routine and prefers a shorter (just over 39 minutes) full-body workout.
Amy reminded me a lot of Cathe in her personality as well: she's very encouraging, frequently saying things like "come on, you can do it!" plus she has just a few occasional "woo-hoos." Also like Cathe, she relies on one of her background exercises for frequent rep checks. Finally, she provided very good mirrored cueing throughout the workout.
Beth C (aka toaster)
September 12, 2006