Video Fitness

Turbo Jam: Learn & Burn

Chalene Johnson

This is the intro workout in the Turbo Jam series, so is not too complex.
It starts with 12 minutes of instruction where Chalene demonstrates the 11 basic moves while giving excellent form pointers. She has you repeat each move several times to learn it.

Next is 15 minutes of "burn" - the workout section. I found it a lot of fun, although too short! Chalene puts the moves you've just learned into combos, and you do get a nice add on for another workout day. It really hits the abs, too, so could be used just for that with a nice cardio kick.

The music is good, the set is bright, the background exercisers are all good to watch - nobody stood out as a ham, or irritating to me.

I consider myself high intermediate, and have been doing Turbo Kicks for a while now. This DVD, while not at that level, is an excellent introduction to them.

Instructor comments: I love Chalene; she's very energetic and encouraging, and is just a lot of fun.

Terri (glavtx)


This is the beginning DVD of turbo jam. It has 2 sections--in the 1st you learn the elite 11 moves. In the second you do a 15 minute workout using the moves. I was originally going to pass on this one because I am an intermediate exerciser. However I am glad that I got it because her form is a little different than other kickboxing tapes. The workout is kickboxing mixed with dancey moves but easy to pick up. Very fun--i always liked what kickboxing did for my body but found myself bored with tae bo. However, this tape has no boredom. PLUS the music is great--cued perfectly!!

Instructor comments: She's very bubbly but not in an annoying way. Describes modifications clearly. Points out cues to good form.


I read all of the bandwagon threads and decided that Turbo Jam was not for me. Then I got swept up in the infomercial. Turbo Jam really looked like a blast on TV. I tried Learn & Burn and Chalene really took her time and broke down the choreography for you. I actually got a decent, moderate intensity cardio workout from Learn & Burn that would surely have built up into a nice steady state cardio workout had it lasted longer than the 15 or so minute length of the workout. This led me to believe I would enjoy Cardio Party……NOT!!! My first attempt at Cardio Party, I only lasted about 20 minutes. It wasn’t too intense for me, I can certainly take intensity. And it wasn’t complexity. I can take that too. It was the cueing that ruined it for me. There just wasn’t any. I had the same problem with the TJ 20 Minute Workout. So then, I had to decide if I wanted to send these back to Beach Body or trade them. I found some stuff I wanted to trade for them and viewed Cardio Party again, just to make sure it was glitch free and that I wouldn’t have any trader’s remorse. That’s when I discovered just how irritating Chalene could be. Let’s just say her perky personality wasn’t enough to sustain me through one more round of Turbo Jam. And the music? Very monotonous. I totally missed the “Turbo Jam has great music” boat. I’ve read some people describe TJ music as Hip Hop, or Urban music. I like Hip Hop. I would love to hear a remix of some popular Hip Hop tunes set to well choreographed and well cued hi/lo or kickboxing cardio. What’s going on here is fast tempo elevator music with a driving beat, all canned and recycled, nothing motivational or inspirational about it. What’s going on here, is once again, the Emperor isn’t wearing any clothes. If you read the VF Lexicon thread under FAQs, there is something called “Doing a Joni O”. That’s what I wound up doing with my Turbo Jams and I would have tossed them vehemently, had I not wanted to return or trade them.

Regarding the standing ab work, I have to say that tucking your pelvis under and sucking in your abs is a good safety cue that supports your low back and assists in working the abs. Moves like the wheel and other kickboxing moves found in TJ do get at the obliques, so I have no doubt that TJ is effective and does deliver the promised results if you like the work outs enough to do them with gusto and consistency.

The DVDs also have a “special features” chapter which is basically Beach Body promoting itself. Isn’t that special?

Turbo Jam was my fifth acquisition of Beach Body products, I won’t harp on the other sets here except to tell you what they all have in common, and that’s uniformity within each series. I think all of the sets I’ve had so far are very monotous and repetitive. One workout in each set is very much like another. Anyone who’s suffered through a Slim Series rotation knows exactly what I’m talking about.

Instructor comments: Warm & perky personality.

Helen K

November 13, 2005

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