In this video from her Your Body Breakthru series, instructor Michelle Dozois offers two 30-minute workouts, Upper Body and Core and Lower Body and Core. Michelle uses both weights and band work (a flat blue band is included with the workout) for fun, innovative strength training moves. The DVD Main Menu breaks down as follows: Introduction, Upper Body and Core, Lower Body and Core, Chapters, Testimonials, More on Your Body Breakthru, Michelle's personal message, and Contact.
The Chapter menus break down each of the two workouts into four separate segments, and I've provided an overview of the exercises below:
UPPER BODY & CORE
1=warm=up and chest work; warm-up moves include step touches, arms stretches, knee ups; band work includes single rear pull backs, double chest press, angled side bend, and sword pull
2=back, biceps, & core; includes lat row with band and weight; double arm pull with band; bicep curls with weights; pullover with weights, adding legs to work core; back work
3=chest, triceps, & core; weights for lying chest press (wide & narrow); band for push-ups and seated 1-arm fly; triceps dips on floor; side plank with hip lowers
4=shoulders, arms, and cool-down; weights for squat curl w/overhead press, add balance; band for front/side raise combo; biceps curl with weights and band; band for triceps french press with biceps combo
LOWER BODY AND CORE
1=warm-up w/side steps, front lunge, moving stretches; unweighted side-to-side squats; squat/dead lift combo with weights; 1-leg balance w/band
2=curtsey squat w/weights; 1-leg squat w/band; plie/front fencer lunger w/weights; band for squat with side & rear abduct
3=Pilates side kick on knee; band for side leg press and circles (outer hip work); seated spinal twist w/band; combo bridge with curl (this move felt quite awkward)
4=side double leg lift, rolling to a sort of side teaser; face-down for heel lifts; on back for toe dips; curl w/leg circle; 2-minute stretch includes cat/cow, down dog, pigeon, lunge, hamstring stretch, side stretch
Michelle keeps the warm-ups and cool-downs short on both so that you get right into the workouts and finish up with a quick stretch.
These felt like a solid intermediate workout to me. One of Michelle's four background exercisers always shows easier modifications, so more beginning exercisers would easily be able to modify by following these moves and using lighter weights. Heavier weights could be used as well, but advanced exercisers looking for a challenge are likely to find this workout a bit too easy. All of Michelle's background exercisers in the Body Breakthru series are from her classes, and their stories (7 total) are featured in the testimonials section. They are quite inspiring, as is Michelle's "personal message," which details her struggles as the mother of an autistic son (the DVD case indicates that it is "Promoting Autism Awareness").
Overall, Michelle has done an excellent job here in creating a challenging workout that is both interesting and fun to do. I would definitely recommend this workout, although I enjoyed her Your Best Body Circuit a bit more, as I found it both more fun and more challenging.
I haven't been crazy about Michelle's workouts in the past, and I've found her personality a bit too over-enthusiastic for my tastes. I had no problems with her here, however: she comes across as very professional, she is encouraging without being over-the-top, and she cues well using mirrored cueing--she also looks more buff than ever! There is a little "whooping" from her background exercisers, but not too bad.
Beth C (aka toaster)
October 1, 2007