Petra Kolber & George Foreman
I am an intermediate exerciser who likes walking workouts. I have most of Leslie's. I like the Gaiam "Get Moving" one with Madeline Lewis. I didn't like the Prevention one.
This is FUN! I happen to like George and have only ever heard great things about him from folks who have met him. He doesn't really lead the workouts, that is done by Petra Kolber.
George is funny and is solid as a brick wall. Petra is perky and cute as a button. Her cueing is VERY GOOD. How do I know? Because, I was able to follow the workouts the first time. I don't even remember if she mirror cued. I just know that I was able to follow along, which is rare for me.
The background exercisers are all shapes, ages, sexes and colors.
The set is gym-style. The choreography is very basic. The music has a great beat and I can walk to it. Workout times are approximate.
Warm-up: 5 minutes
Walking and strength: 20 minutes
Cool down: 5 minutes
There is basic walking, side steps, etc. Then sets of squats, lunges and dips. I'd rate this as beginner/low intermediate. Much like the level in Leslie's Walk Away the Pounds workouts. The music was nice and loud.
I would definitely be interested in the other two workouts that are supposed to be available, but I don't know if you can just get them from the soon-to-be-airing infomercial.
Please see review.
I am always on the lookout for new walking workouts. I have nearly all the Leslie Sansones and I get a lot of use out of them. I am a bit above their level, but if I keep my arm movements big and am suitably warmed up first I find I can still get a good workout out of them. They are a nice change from the necessary-but-evil impact work I have been doing!
So I was pleased to here of this new series, which has two workouts available and the potential for more later. George Foreman doesn't really interest me, but he had a nice rapport with instructor Petra Kolber, and with the background exercisers, whom he kibbitzes with from time to tome.
The workout was a little more intense than the typical Leslie stuff. Some squat and lunge intervals mixed in strategically with the walking stuff kept my heart rate up. And Petra has a few extra moves on Leslie: there is some mambo-ish stuff, some out-out-in-in and some definate choreography. There were a few places where we did some stuff on one side then came back after a march break to repeat the sequence again. This makes the time go by pretty fast!
The one weakness over Leslie is the total lack of upper body work. They don't even move the arms much. Even before the weights come in, Leslie makes an effort to move the arms that I did not see Petra and George make here. That's a bit disappointing.
Overall though, I am quite pleased. This gives me some much-needed variety in a workout category that previously only had one other option. I am still not in love with George, but these are solid routines and I anticipate future titles.
This video is a very basic walking exercise video with easy to learn moves. It is approx 33 minutes. I don't know if it will burn enough calories but I feel that this video will be great for people who are beginning to exercise and also for elderly people as this is low-impact.
I wish Pedra had shown more modifications for intermediate/advanced exercisers.
Music is good.
George is likable. Pedra is okay, however she says 'walk with George' and 'stay with George' before every move! I thought she said it more than the actual instructions.
March 11, 2005
I've always liked George Foreman's lovable, big teddy bear-like personality (at least how he's been in more recent years), so I thought I would check out one of his workouts; Circuit Walk is the first video I've tried from his Walk It Off series. One concern I had was that it would be too easy for me, as I am an experienced exerciser, but I was pleasantly suprised to discover that this workout could be easily modified to make it more challenging.
Although George is a prominent feature during the video, the workout is actually led by veteran instructor Petra Kolber, with George making occasional motivational comments throughout. Petra starts the workout with a basic aerobic warm-up, leading you through simple steps such as marches (the "walk"), side steps, heel taps forward, knee lifts, and the "George shuffle," which is just a walk forward and back; the warm-up lasts just over 5 minutes. Things start to move a bit more quickly for the main cardio segment of the workout, although the steps remain very basic. Petra does add a few variations such as front and side stomps, but everything is very easy to follow, especially since Petra always previews each new move first and tells you that you can stick with the walk if you are having trouble following along. During the cardio portion, there are also a few toning moves included in the form of squats and lunges. After about 23 minutes, you begin cooling down by returning to the moves from the warm-up, and then the last couple of minutes of the workout consist of a few simple lower body stretches, bringing the total time in at just under 32 minutes.
I wouldn't call this a true circuit workout, as the toning segments are pretty minimal. However, I found that by doing the squats and lunges double-time, I could keep my heart rate up, which was a good modification for my more advanced fitness level. Other things that you could do to make this workout more challenging include making the movements bigger, adding in your own arm movements, and increasing the impact slightly with small hops here and there. By doing the workout in this way, I was able to keep my heart rate in my target zone the entire time, and I burned just under 200 calories. On the other hand, the workout is very easy to modify down as well, making it completely appropriate for beginners.
If you're wondering how this workout compares to Leslie's Sansone's walking series, I found it to be a lot more fun. The music is much more upbeat, and Petra performs the moves with a bit more of a dancey flair, which I enjoyed. I would definitely recommend this video as a fun, basic workout for beginners or an enjoyable lighter alternative for intermediates who don't mind modifying the moves a bit to meet their own needs.
Although I've found Petra a bit annoying in other videos, I didn't mind her here, although you could tell she was a bit programmed to say "walk it off with George" as much as possible. George is his usual, goofy self, which is what I like about him; his comments made me smile during the workout. Petra and George lead a class of about 8 participants of all shapes and sizes.
Beth C (aka toaster)
December 4, 2005
I’m reviewing this workout after previewing and doing it once each.
General workout breakdown: This walking video lasts just under 32 minutes and includes some basic moves to strengthen the lower body. The base walking steps include walking (or marching), side steps, step with a heel in front, the “Foreman shuffle” (three steps and a tap), step knee, wide step, heel curl, and lunge (more of a tap out to the side or back); the base strength moves are squats and lunges. The video ends with a cool down and stretches for the calf, hip flexor, and hamstring. The focus on the lower body; there’s nothing to strengthen the upper body and few arm moves. The pace is along the lines of what I would consider a moderately quick stroll, so it’s not too fast.
Level: I’d recommend this to beginners with a little bit of experience because there isn’t a ton of form instruction on the squats and lunges. More intermediate exercisers could exaggerate the movements and use light hand weights to get a decent workout. I consider myself at least at the high intermediate stage with respect to floor aerobics, and this video is on the easy side for me.
Class: 1 man and 8 women join George and Petra. One woman is a senior citizen. Another is of a plus size frame and yet another of a “normal” size, but what I love is that the “thin” background exercisers all look realistically fit, not the type of skinny that you only get with genetics. Some of background exercisers demonstrate variations when there are some. Petra will preview some new moves, and she and George generally will stay with the basic moves when there are options to increase the intensity.
Music: upbeat music with a good beat: some of it’s pop music (recognizable, but nothing I could name), some of it’s standard exercise video stuff.
Set: interior studio space with muted lighting. A big sign in the back proclaims this is “George’s Gym,” and there are various pieces of boxing equipment, lockers, etc., lining the walls.
Production: good picture and sound. The camera shots were more or less helpful, but I wish the camera wouldn’t do so many close ups of people’s upper bodies, since this is a walking video, and I think it’s best if the camera always shows the instructor when there’s a new move.
Space Requirements: Ideally you should be able to take two medium-sized steps to each side and forwards and backwards, but if you have less space, just stay in place.
DVD Notes: There are no chapters on this DVD, so have your remote handy to fast forward through the Warnings, GoodTimes logo, Walk it off with George! intro, and George’s description.
Conclusion: This is included in a set with Walk and Box which available separately from the infomercial set. It’s probably between the intensity of the Champion Walk & Sweat and Fat Blasting Walk. Personally I won’t keep this one because I have too many videos focusing on the lower body already. I will say that I felt a nice burn in my buttocks when I did this video after Tamilee Webb’s I Want Those Buns.
Petra leads the workout. She cues decently, usually given you enough notice of move changes, and mirror cues (i.e. when she says “left,” she means your left). She’ll preview the more complicated moves (like lunges), but then she’ll show the less intense variation of a move, too. Her British accent is easy to understand. Her enthusiasm and plugging for walking it off with George is almost over the top here.
George is primarily here for encouragement, although he occasionally offers tips on posture or cues a move. George also throws in a joke or two about his days as a boxer, picks on some of the background exercisers, and banters back and forth with Petra. For someone who showed such amazing dexterity in the boxing ring, he’s not the most graceful when it comes to the dancier moves, but that’s part of what’s endearing about him.
March 17, 2006
This is probably my favorite out of the 4 George workouts I've tried. Express Walk is a close 2nd. I do this one on my urban rebounder for added intensity and use the floor for the lunge segments. I think this is probably the only one of his (that I've tried.still have 2 left to try!) that could be done on the floor by anyone other than an absolute beginner and still feel a workout. I love the music and this one has segments of squats then a few lunge segments interspersed throughout with mostly walking and knees. All the moves are shown ahead of time during the workout (we walk with george while petra shows the moves) then we do it with her a few steps later. george is very encouraging and talks to the people working out in the background and to the camera or 'us'. The time seems to go by fast in this one and I really like it, especially on my rebounder. I think this is probably the intensity of a 2 mile leslie sansone walk but has the toning segments (squats/lunges).
I put Petra first because she's the one doing all the instructing and cueing. George is funny and motivating and silly and Petra laughs but she's more serious than he is and shows the 'fitness' version and always shows what's coming up next and cues very well.
I have to admit that I bought this DVD because it was cheap and I knew that if I didn't like it, I could pass it on to my Mother (who loves George for his Grill!)
The DVD runs for 35 minutes and consists of the standard walking moves - marching, side steps, knee lifts, hamstring curls - broken up with lunges and squats. Over the course of the DVD you do about 36 lunges and 36 squats.
This workout is beginner level, but a nice alternative to Leslie. The lunges and squats add a new dimension.
There is a team of people working out, with a few of them doing a harder variation for a few moves (more lunges.) The music sounds like "real" songs and is one of the highlights of this DVD for me.
Petra leads while George walks along and makes comments. The commentary is quieter than the music.