(Intermediate-Floor Aerobics, Toning)
resembles an intermediate version of "Fat Burning
Workout", with simple dumbbell-toning segments
thrown in. The "music video" style, with
different tunes, sets and routines for each segment
(there's a Caribbean-themed one, a fifties one, etc.)
makes this less boring than most long floor-aerobic
tapes. A brief lecture on nutrition follows the workout.
If you can find this on "closeout" (like I did,
for $4.99!) it's a good value.
Fitness level: Intermediate.
Composition: 5 minute warm-up; 8 minutes arm and upper
body toning; 35 minutes floor aerobics; 8 minutes lower
body toning; 5 minute cool-down
Equipment: one-to-five-pound dumbbells; can do toning
without weights if you're just starting out.
Heart Rate Checks: 2
Music: ranges from funk to traditional aerobic-style to
Caribbean to 50's rock
Impact: Mixed, but low-impact modifiers shown for most
Settings: gym and studio. The settings and decor change
with each section. Whenever the music changes, you'll see
the song title, and section (warm-up, toning, aerobics,
cool-down) displayed in the lower left hand corner of the
screen, like MTV.
New mom Kathy Smith opens with her
usual low-key but friendly, informative introduction that
belies the energetic routine ahead. I don't know if this
is the program that got her looking so great after her
pregnancy, but she definitely looks wonderful in this
video. Kathy has always advertised this as the follow-up
to her Fat Burning Workout video. It's definitely on the
next level--steps that are "aerobic" in that
video are "warm-ups" here, and the first few
times I did this workout I was grateful for the
nutritional lecture at the end. Not because I needed
it--although I probably did--but because all I could do
after completing the cool-down was lie on the floor and
However, I persevered and I'm glad I did. I felt
results in a few weeks, and saw them in the second month.
At the risk of sounding like a FIRM testimonial, I looked
better at age 37 than I had at 21! My arms and upper body
were toned for the first time in my life. By the fourth
month, I had tons of energy, and I looked great in my
jeans. Then came pregnancy, and it wasn't until my
daughter was weaned that I could once again exercise this
intensely. Now that I've returned to intermediate level,
it's good to have this tape in my collection. While I've
collected other wonderful workouts due to this website
(thanks, Wendy!), this remains one of my favorites.
This was the first time I'd ever used weights in an
aerobic routine--the Collage catalog doesn't count the
weight work for "Weight Loss Workout" as
"aerobic" but it sure kept my heart rate in the
target zone--especially the lower body work. Kathy
suggests that neophytes do the tape the first time
without weights--and one exerciser demonstrates the
toning that way. (Another exerciser has wristband
weights--the rest use dumbbells) I ignored her and
started with 1-pound weights, and had no problems.
Two things I loved about the toning: it was
"choreographed" so you keep moving instead of
sitting or, Heaven forbid, lying on the floor. (At my
9:00pm exercise time, a prone position is an invitation
to slumber!) Arms and upper body work follows the
warm-up; the lower body work follows the aerobics. If
they'd been lumped together, I'd have just skipped them
and done only the aerobics, which to me is always the fun
part. Also, being new to using weights like this, I don't
think I could have done all 16 minutes consecutively--the
division gave me a chance to get my second wind, which
usually happens 20 minutes into the aerobics section.
That reminds me. . .
I haven't said much about the aerobics yet--which is
why I bought the tape in the first place--and I don't
want to make this too long. Like lots of folks who read
these reviews,I love aerobics the way a dog loves bones.
Enjoyable routines and great music are part of what I
live for, and this program has both. It's a faster pace
and a little trickier than her beginner workouts, but
Kathy is a master at teaching through "add-ons"
and combinations. She also includes modifiers for people
who are intermediate level but don't want to do
"power moves." I especially enjoy the Caribbean
and 50's segments--the crew has *almost* as much fun as
the one in "Donna-Mite Workout."
The only problem I have with this workout is that the
toning is wonderful, but doesn't include work for abs and
back. Kathy implies in her intro that she geared this
video in part toward new mothers. But she left out
exercises for their most common trouble spots! Had she
included them, this would be the video most likely to go
with me to a desert island. But since I now rotate videos
rather than stick with just one, I can include that work
on a "strength day" instead. Not a major
concern in my book. I paid $10.00 for this at Suncoast,
and IMHO it's better than some of the $19.95 (and up)
tapes out there now.
I think I got this tape a long time ago, and didn't like
it then. Just for kicks I pulled it out a few weeks ago,
and I still don't like it that much. It has a number of
aerobic segments, I don't remember how many. I like a few
of them, but others are difficult to perform. I think
Kathy has such long legs she can do lunges faster than
normal! Either that, or I'm hopelessly uncoordinated. The
songs change for each routine as do all the casts
outfits, which could be viewed as interesting, or
annoying. The camera angles change a lot too, which for
me is annoying and confusing. Some of the routines were
fun, but not enough of them, that I want to run out and
do this video again. I think since I found Step aerobics,
it's just more my style. I find it hard to keep my heart
rate up during floor aerobics. But, if you like floor
aerobics, you will probably enjoy this video.
This is the first time I had worked out with weights, and
it is worth the results. The muscles in my arms are
starting to show--after only one month. I do this video
three times a week and I do not tire of it. The music is
a bit corny at times, but it keeps my attention. As for
cardio, it keeps me in my target range for the duration.
My only complaint is there is no abdominal work. I'm
always looking for another tape to do my ab work after
the video. Otherwise, it is a great purchase.
Kathy Smith does a lunge segment that is in my opinion, much too fast. In trying to keep up with her, I experienced a great deal of knee pain. Other than that I think it is a good addition to her fat burning workout.
Instructor comments: I think Kathy Smith has alot of energy, and she is excellent at cueing. She lets you know ahead of time when add ons are coming, and when to change moves. I have always liked Kathy Smith!
January 14, 1998
I have been using this video off-and-on for at least seven years in waves of 5-6X/week to 1X/month. When I first bought the video, I had already been a runner for about 15 years, and a swimmer for about 5. I was, I think, quite fit. As I write this, I'm still dripping from having just finished doing the "Weight-Loss Workout" for what must be the thousandth time, and I still enjoy it. I'm fit, but not terribly coordinated, so it took me a while to master the routine. Now that I have, I'm able to concentrate on form and effort. Even now after all these years (BTW, I'm still running, swimming,& weight-lifting --I still get my heart rate up into the target zone with this tape.
Instructor comments: I think that Kathy is the best instructor I've seen for keeping the routines simple, but aerobically challenging. The number of repetitions of each step followed by gradual add-on steps gives even a klutz like me a chance to learn the routine.
This was my first Kathy Smith video that led me to purchase many other videos produced by her. The music is lively and it keeps me motivated. It really tones your thighs, buns, and hips well. Now that I do strength and toning all over, I no longer do the floor work in this video. If you're starting out in exercise, you'll find some aches and pains the next day after this workout. Overall - a great step video!
Instructor comments: Kathy Smith is very inspiring and motivating. I have many of her videos and just can't seem to get bored with her even though I am an intermediate/low advance exerciser. I use mainly mixed aerobics tapes and she works for me.
I LOVE this video! Its now 10 year old and I cant believe I just discovered it. I guess I was always afraid to try the weights. I purchased the video for about $8.00 from 800.Com after reading the reviews here.
I am just now progressing from a beginner to the early stages of an intermediate and this video is definately pushing me along.
The moves are great, the integration of weights is wonderful and there's a nice streach at the end. However, there are several annoying things about this video:
1) As usual, Kathy uses extremely trendy costumes that look dated almost immediately. (When will she learn?)
2) The fast clips back and forth from one set to another (even in mid-move) seem kind of gimicky.
3) The 50's routine (IMHO) is awful. The costumes, the moves the way she lets everyone else lead...everything about it is bad. The whole routine has a kind of shuffle to it which is very difficult on carpet. Fortuanately, the 50's routine is only 5 minutes and 17 seconds (I really watch the clock, its so bad), so you can modify through it.
Over all, the good things about this tape far outweigh the bad. The music is dated, but still fun. (Much better music than was in Fat Burning Workout). My good friend Nancy (I feel like she's my good friend after seeing her in so many KS videos) is still here. Nancy is the non-model type participant whose legs are short so you know if she can do it, you can do it! Best of all, I feel very strong and powerful after this tape.
Thanks to VF and the others who reviewed this tape for introducing me to it!
Instructor comments: Kathy Smith is my favorite instuctor because she always keeps things safe and simple. She is'nt one of those big whoopers and she keeps quiet sometimes. In this video, her voice has an unual gruffness that I really like.
This is a great workout! It's a solid hour-long intermediate workout consisting of a warm-up and stretch, some upper body weight work that keeps your heart rate up, several aerobic sections with different "take it from the top" combos in each one, lower body/upper body weight work that keeps your heart rate up, then a cooldown stretch. Each section is in a different scene, although they come back to some of them. Yes, the sets look quite dated, but I've grown to love them (it didn't take very long). The one aerobic section in the Carribean set is very easy aerobically (although it's the most challenging choreographically), which is annoying - I wish it were harder. The last aerobic section is in an outdoor 1950s scene. This one is the most challenging (also the only one that is exclusively high impact) and I LOVE the music - energetic 1950s piano and guitar. The rest of the music is the standard early 90s exercise video music. The editing is a little funny. I like it. It sometimes switches back and forth between the set that's ending and the set that's about to come on, showing them doing the moves in both sets. Also, they show a couple of "outtakes," where Kathy and her background exercisers get out of synch with each other, and they're all confused and laughing, during the video itself, sort of going back and forth really quickly between the mess-up and the real thing. But it doesn't make it confusing or anything to watch, just entertaining. It still looks professional. There are a couple of cueing mistakes, for the picky people out there, but overall it flows very nicely. Kathy is very comfortable on the camara, but not so comfortable that she starts talking about things other than what to do next - I like that! The exercisers in the background are a couple of women and a man. One of them does low-impact the whole time. They are pleasant to watch, happy and energetic but not over-the-top. For the beginners, there are a couple times during the workout where there is a little screen at the bottom giving you pointers on your form or showing the feet on the more complicated steps (but again, all the step are pretty simple to catch on to). If you keep watching after the workout is over, Kathy talks about nutrition. I keep coming back to this tape over and over again; I really like it and recommend it.
In my opinion, I don't know what there is not to like about Kathy in this video. She is mature, which I like: it doesn't seem like there's a little kid running the show. She's also not at all bossy or intimidating. She is pretty serious the whole time, but always has a little smile on her face. She wears a bright red leotard most of the time...:)
December 12, 2003