Support VF

Crunch: Best Arms and Abs

Caveat: I've only been back into exercise for about a month now so these are not the thoughts of an advanced exerciser.

I bought this tape based on a favorable review I read in Fitness magazine. When I first got it home from Blockbuster ($7.99) and watched a bit of it, I thought, "Oh no!" After watching it once, I came to this site to check out reviews. There wasn't a review of *this* video, but there was another Crunch review. It complained about the canned whooping an hollering which, also present on this tape, I found to be extremely strange and offputting. I have to say that I have now done the 30-minute tape twice, and it's sort of growing on me. I've managed to block out the whooping and appreciate the workout for its quality. It's short, but I like the way the weights are incorporated into semi-aerobic movements. For a toning tape, it's very high-energy. The routine flows, and as I said before, I really like the instructor. It's a nice length to insert before the cooldown of an aerobics tape. Done with good form and concentration, these exercises are good. I would recommend this tape with a warning about it's slightly "cheesy" cast and that darned whooping!

Faith Scarinzi is incredibly encouraging and empathetic. Saying, "I know you feel it. You can do it. You have it in you." and stuff like that all the way through. I liked her a lot.

Abby N

I have mixed feelings about this video. First of all, I'm not crazy about the style of the "Crunch" series (with the exception of their yoga and pilates videos); the participants always seem a little TOO enthusiastic to me, to the point of coming off as very fake. I also don't like the extended warm-ups (close to 10 minutes) in the Crunch tapes, as I usually warm up via other exercise before doing toning tapes.

The workout itself is divided into four sections, two for arms and two for abs. Instructor Faith begins with standing arms work, and this is the section I liked the least. The main thing I disliked was that while working the arms with light weights, you are also moving your legs--lunges, side steps, etc. Fans of "The Firm" series may like this style, but I found that it unncessarily complicates the workout, especially since it isn't really adding much of a leg workout. The arms exercises themselves aren't very challenging, but unforunately, they are done in such a way that it wouldn't be easy to use heavier weights. The second section moves on to floor abs work. In this section, the moves were less complex and better cued. The third section returns to workout the arms, this time on the floor. Again, the moves here were easier to follow and included some tough triceps work. This section includes a brief set of pushups as well as bicep concentration curls done in a kneeling position. In the fourth and final section, Faith returns to the abs--for those of you familiar with the Quick Fix Tight Abs video, you'll recognize the music! In both abs sections, Faith does a variety of moves that are easy to follow and well-cued.

Overall, I liked the abs parts of this workout better than the arms parts, and I especially didn't like the more complex choreography in the first section. Those who enjoy The Firm videos might find the style of video more enjoyable than I did, although they might also be disappointed with the low difficulty level.

Instructor comments: Faith seemed genuine and reminded me of Donna Richardson; she's very encouraging, and she looks a bit like Julinanne Moore.

Beth (aka toaster)

February 24, 2004

Your typical potpourri of Crunch background exercisers in ill-advised workout gear whooping at inappropriate times and displaying improper form during floor ab work. Set indoor gym.

Arm work was different because you did grapevines while doing bicep curls, etc. I doubt the safety of some of the curls with heavy weights while moving around. This is for a light upper day.
Ab work is why I am keeping this one. Lots of alternating leg positions while in crunch position which made the time go by quickly. I plan on integrating these moves with others I've learned to spice up my ab routine. I am a little irritated at having to fast forward in the future since the abs and arms are broken up in segments. Abs approx 15 min and rest of "upper" with warmup/cooldown probably 17 min. Total time: 33 min.
Beginner only.

Rating: 2 out of 5 stars.

Instructor comments: Instructor a little repetitive with asking me if my abs were working. I would have answered her if I wasn't too busy grunting. I would say I am indifferent towards this instructor.

Linda (aka fanofladyvols)


Video Fitness copyright © 1996 - 2009 Wendy Niemi Kremer    All rights reserved