This is one of a series, and for the moment, the only
one I have. I think it is a very useful tape: it has
three ten-minute strength sections on it, all led by
Minna. The first segment is compound moves involving
upper and lower body (e.g. squats with bicep curls). I
found these challenging, mostly because I am a klutz
and following two moves at once (even two familiar
ones) is hard for me. The second section is all arms,
mostly traditional moves like raises and kickbacks.
The last section is a very squat-heavy legs section.
Because of the way this tape is set up, it is a very
easy add-on to other things. I tried the first
total-body section with Minna's Strength and Grace
tape and feel I got a good workout. Also, if you did a
non-traditional strength tape (e.g. Christi's SBF) or
an endurance tape (Body Pump) and wanted to tack on
some more muscle-building work as a complement, the
arms section would be perfect.
My only complaint with this tape is that Minna's
rapport with her background exercisers seems a bit
forced. She'll forget about them for awhile, then say
something like "I don't hear you back there." Then one
of them will return with an awkward "I can't talk
because I am so busy working my triceps muscle which."
followed by a textbook-like remark on what the triceps
is. It felt very artificial.
All in all though, Minna is a pleasant enough
instructor and the format of this tape makes it quite
This is a part of the Quick Fix Series. This tape concentrates on the Arms and Legs. Divided into three 10 minute sections, they are short enough to use as an add on to other tapes or all together for a longer workout.
The first section is compound upper body work with leg work. Piles with overhead presses, step squats with hammer curls, dips with bicep curls, and side lateral raises are some of the moves included.
The second section is all bodyweight lower body work. No dumbbells are needed. You will do squats, lunges, piles, static lunges, and ski squats (very narrow stance squats).
The third section is all standing upper body work. You will do bicep curls, triceps extensions, side lateral raises, front raises, one arm rows, and tricep kickbacks.
Each of the segments begins with a very short 1 minute warm-up and a very short half a minute stretch to end the segment.
This is geared for beginners. Minna and her crew are using very light weights. Most of the upper body moves are performed slow enough that you could use heavier weights. I used ten pounds and felt that it gave a much better workout than using the 3-5 pounds that they are using. You can also add the appropriate weight for the second section of lower body work.
I found that there were many things that I did not care about in this video. All of the comments "I can feel sexy arms and legs coming" were very annoying and scripted. I prefer that they keep the comments motivational or related to form points or modifications rather than looking sexy. Also during the ski squats, which are very narrow stance squats Minna's knee extends beyond her toes. I don't feel that a beginner should attempt ski squats until they have mastered traditional squats, since they can be hard on the knees if not performed properly.
Though this tape is beginner level, I can't say that I would suggest it to a someone beginning to add weight training to their routine. I think that the Firm Basic series would be a better choice since more modifications and options are demonstrated. Since Quick Fix doesn't show the modifications to adding weight to the lower body moves, or show increased weight, a beginner might find it hard or intimidating to add weights on their own. There is no suggestions at how to advance the workout to suit your increased level of fitness.
Like all of the tapes in the Quick Fix series, this video consists of three 10-minute workouts that can be done separately or together. Minna Lessing takes the lead on this tape, with Julie Upton and Nancy Popp in the background. Although short, each workout is fairly intense, but you can stay motivated by watching the countdown clock in the lower right corner.
The first workout targets both legs and arms. After a very brief warmup, Minna leads you through a mix of traditional toning exercises such as bicep curls, squats, and lunges; there's also several sets of french presses for the triceps. Many of the exercises consist of leg/arm combinations, and some are pretty tough. The cool-down consists of only one arm stretch. The second workout focuses solely on legs, mostly via squats and lunges. It also contains some leg extensions, both to the side and to the front, and two brief stretches at the end. Finally, workout three is for the arms. Biceps are targeted through single, double, and hammer curls, and tricep exercises include the french press and extensions. Several exercises for shoulders are also included; these are done at a slower 2-count as opposed to the tempo pace of the other exercises. Like the first program, a single stretch is offered for cool-down.
The Quick Fix series is great for those who are time-crunched, and this tape is no exception. For full-body strength training, trying doing all three programs on this tape combined with one of the Quick Fix Tight Abs workouts, and you'll have a great 40-minute workout that just flies by.
Minna does not give much instruction for these moves, which are mostly basic. She and the others are friendly and motivating without being overly peppy.
September 8, 2003