Video Fitness

Low Impact Aerobics and Stretch

The low-impact class is my least favorite of all the sessions in this series. It gives a very good cardio workout in 25 minutes. The two instructors are energetic and enthusiastic and the moves are well coordinated and quite easy to follow. I would have preferred seeing a wider range of ages and body types among the instructors and participants. They all looked about the same age and size. I don't feel as motivated with this class as with previous videos (from the 1980s and early 1990s) in which Jane led the classes (perhaps at age 58 she wants to take it a little easier). This class is followed by an enjoyable total body stretch taught by Jane for relaxation and increased flexibility.

Janice Molina

Music: Instrumental but varying kinds and tempos
Length: 47 minutes. 6 minute motion & stretch warmup, 31 minute aerobics, 10 minute stretching, mainly on floor
Energy Level: moderate
Choreography: mainly simple
Production: good quality

Fonda does excellent cueing, has a knack for reminding you to breathe, or pull in your stomach just when you need the reminder. There are a couple of slightly confusing steps, but she warns you first. The tape starts slow and soothingly, which is great for slow starters like me who usually start exercising when they are barely awake, and builds. For the most part, you can modify the intensity, and Fonda tends to introduce pace changes anyways: you're breathing hard and all of a sudden things slow down a bit. This video is heavy on arm movements, and even though Fonda changes them fairly often, your arms are likely to get tired long before your legs do. On the other hand, you don't feel like you have to do all the arm movements and often you can come up with less stressful alternative movements. It's one of my favorite tapes.

Diane Danielle

This tape contains a floor aerobics workout and a full body stretch. Jane Fonda is absent from the aerobics section , which is led by three of her instructors. The class is divided into two halves so that you can perform the moves at lower or higher intensity. The steps are fairly easy to learn. As I have two left feet and am not the most coordinated and graceful of people, this is always an important consideration for me. I still have a bit of trouble with one move, but even that isn't really difficult. (By the way, I notice on the cover that the choreography is by Jay Blahnik.) It goes at a fairly fast pace, with lively, enthusiastic music. The workout is not long - 25 minutes - but it gets me sweating and it leaves me feeling quite cheerful. The cover says it's for all fitness levels, but I'd say it's more beginner/intermediate level.

I bought the Personal Trainer series so that I would have some shorter workouts for days when I don't have much time, and I'm finding it very suitable for that.

The stretch section is one-on-one with Jane Fonda. This is a pleasant total body stretch, and my only comment is that it only lasts about 16 minutes (not the full 20 indicated on the cover). I think it would have been better if it had been a bit longer.

Instructor comments: The instructors in the aerobics section are very enthusiastic; the cueing is good.

Jane Fonda's soothing voice leads you through a flowing, relaxing stretch. She gives clear instruction on how to perform the stretches and where you should be feeling them.

Glynis van Uden
13 July 1998

This is my least favorite Jane Fonda video. I like Jane in it alot, but her instructors are very annoying. Laurel isn't even a leader, which would've been helpful. But one of them has a bikini underwear bottom so when she hops around we can see her butt! I don't buy a video to see some teacher strut around showing her butt to everyone! The movements are pretty fair, but the music and over-enthusiasm makes this video too much for me to even bother putting in the VCR.

Instructor comments: Jane is again a great leader in this class, doing excellent stretching, not being annoying, and doing exercises people can do. The tapes seem more beginner-friendly as they each come out. I've been doing the videos since the first was released. That was rough but the best tape. But this tape is much more user-friendly to new exercisers.

Michael B.
9/7/98

This is a fun, short, low or high impact aerobics routine. It's definitely dance-based and definitely not for those who are already fit. I used it as a Beginners tape and still use it when I want a fun break from other routines. It works well as a warm up for the Total Body Sculpting workouts that are in the trio of videos that comprise her Personal Trainer Series.

The stretch routine is good, but I prefer the one in the Light Aerobics and Stress Reduction Program. It's more thorough and just a little longer.

Instructor comments: Jane only leads the stretch section. Laurel Sparks, Michelle LeMay, and another instructor lead the aerobics section. The quality of instruction is comparable to Jane's other videos - good cueing, modifications noted, frequent reminders to breathe and drink water, good demonstration of the proper form.

Sandi Tinker
1/14/99

I am really disappointed in this video! I ordered it a few weeks ago, and it came yesterday. I tried it for the first time this morning, even after reading the lukewarm reviews here on this site. I can't even agree with the few good things that I read! I did not find the movements in the LEAST bit easy to follow, and found the cueing to be entirely inadequate. I used to be a dancer, and am fairly well coordinated, but I had to rewind the first section of the tape repeatedly just to find out what the heck they were trying to get us to do. I was also disappointed at the lack of stretching in the warm up before aerobics, and at the overall shortness of the workout. Even when I finally figured out what they were trying to convey as far as choreography, I did not feel that I got much of a workout at all -- I hardly broke a sweat. This was not low impact, it was 'asleep'. The stretching section would have felt nicely refreshing, had I actually had a workout beforehand, but as I said, the aerobic section was totally disappointing. I usually am a big fan of Jane's videos, but this one was far below expectation. It will go to the back of my shelf and never leave, and I will go back to my old favorite, her earlier "Low Impact Aerobic Workout". Skip this one.

Angelle
lady_amaranthe@ivillage.com
12/17/99



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