Video Fitness

Cardio Dance Slimdown

Allie Del Rio

Iím an advanced exerciser who loves cardio and dance. I knew going in that this was not a dance video, and after I finished, I knew it wasnít a workout video, either.

The warmup starts out with some head and arm rolls, which transitioned into some hip-hop/funky-style dancing. We did the mambo and we did some disco. We finished with a short cool-down, which consisted of some more dancing... and I donít mean actual dancing. Nobody I have ever known would go out in public and dance this way. Allie keeps saying everybody will want to dance with us at the club, but I doubt it.

I wouldnít classify this as a workout either, simply because there isnít enough cardio in it to make it so. There are no weights used, no resistance, and no core exercises. I didnít really work up a sweat, and my heart rate stayed low the entire time. The workout simply did not feel particularly beneficial. It wonít be part of my usual rotation as I like longer and much more intense workouts than this one could offer.

My recommendation is that if you are a beginner or low-intermediate and want a short, fun, but not intense workout, then this is for you. Even people with two left feet can get the hang of this one. If you are advanced, this video would be for easy days or just for fun. I felt pretty silly at times, but I did not hate it. It just isnít something Iíll do very often.

Sadly, I grade this one with only a C. I wanted to like it so much more than I did.

Instructor comments: Perky and bubbly, as usual. Very likeable.



This tape didnít get a very good reaction when it first came out. I have done it a lot and enjoy it.

There is a huge cheese factor Ė lots of moves where you put your hands through your hair or pump your chest out. I find it fun cheese. But I also loved the sections of Jane Fondaís Complete Workout where the exercisers are dancing in front of film of actual men in kilts doing Scottish dancing or whatever. Allie does say weíre all going to go to the club and talk to some cute guy. I am guessing she does that as much as other mothers of young children (never, judging from my experience) so it cracks me up. But if I ever make a Firm trip Ė Allie, Iím ready to make a fool of myself on the dance floor!

There is a not-too-long warmup (about 5 minutes) and then three sections of dancing.

The first set of dances remind me of something the Dazzlers would do. The Dazzlers are Florida Gator cheerleaders Ė they wear spangly ab-baring leotards and do dance routines during timeouts at basketball games. I believe Allie was on the Dazzler equivalent at USC and I bet she was great. I never thought I was interested in that kind of thing myself but this segment has awakened my until then fantasies of being a Dazzler (although hopefully with my belly covered). Allie starts out with "Let's get funky - start with a march". I find this funny also. Are marches ever funny? The Firmies all look cute and everything, but "funky" does not trip off *my* tongue.

The second set is Latin inspired set and I find it kind of blah and less intense. An easier version of this made it onto Cardio Party and I donít know why Ė the other sections are more fun.

The third set is supposedly disco but includes lots of moves I remember from earlier in the 70s Ė hitchhiker, locomotion, the bump as well as robot hands. It brings me back to dancing around in junior high and just the word Locomotion makes me think of Carole Kingís Tapestry. It seems not very disco to me (not like youíre doing anything as complicated as The Hustle) but fun.

The cooldown is about 5 minutes and she does seem to do a lot of nice gentle stretching moves Ė circle kicks, plies, hmmm, canít remember what else.

This is not all that intense. I am a permanent low intermediate, 49, I run a 5k in around 31-32 minutes. I ran my HRM from the beginning until the start of the cooldown and I got an average of 126 for 36 minutes. I did see my HR as high as 140. So even for me it is a not-so-hard day but it does have a place in my life. I can see that a younger fitter person would not enjoy it. It would be TERRIFIC for a new exerciser my age who perhaps actually did enjoy disco dancing or that kind of cheerleading/dance routine kind of thing in her youth.

There is a little impact Ė skater moves in the disco part, other hopping kind of things. No modifier, but I think you could avoid it pretty easily as there is not much.

I find myself using this less often since I bought my Denise Austin fat blasting dance mix. It is so disappointing that it is not even chaptered. On days I donít want to do much, I also sometimes donít want to do a 40 minute workout. It would be so much better if I could easily skip that Latin section and have a shorter workout. The DA tape costs the same amount and lets you program the order in which you do the sections Ė itís a much better deal. Well, I am glad the Firm has improved in this area but they are still not where Denise is IMO Ė and they seem to be looking at the same market.

Also, this is less choreographed and easier than Alison's dance workout (Cardio Dance Fusion) IMO.

Instructor comments:

Coleen (cjo42a)

August 7, 2008

I loved this workout! For years I've supplemented my FIRMs with what I call "plain cardio" workouts from folks like Kathy Smith because there are days I just want to have fun.

Well, this is the workout I've been waiting for. It's as much fun as Kathy Smith's Latin Rhythm Workout. I'd read some reviews and complaints about this one being too dancy and un-FIRM like, to which I say: Ballroom Aerobics, anyone? ;-)

The music is the best of the Pink FIRMs, and I absolutely love Allie's outfit! In 40 minutes or so I get a fun workout for those days I just don't feel like being so serious, or for those evenings when I've overindulged and can't face Ultimate Calorie Blaster.

There is a lot of TIFTing, even though Allie never says it, but the moves are fun and easy, and I loved the disco part. For those of us who were too young to disco when it was hot, this is your chance to make like Saturday Night Fever with the Bus Stop, Locomotive and that russian move John Travolta does. ;)


Instructor comments: Allie is a great cuer, and looks fantastic!



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