Video Fitness

Reebok: Intense Moves

Required Equipment: a step bench.

This is an interval training workout made up of what Reebok calls "Repeated Work Efforts" (RPEs) where you work very hard, followed by recovery intervals where you work less intensely. Those familiar with Karen Voight's ENERGY SPRINT will know these RPEs as "sprints." After a pretty vigorous warm-up with some stretching, Gin begins to set you up for the first sprint. She shows three versions of the sprint move: Hard, Harder and Hardest. Then you perform the sprint for 1 minute, choosing the intensity you want. After the sprint, you recover for two minutes before you begin the next sprint. There are ten sprint/recovery cycles in all. The workout ends with a cooldown and stretch. It's about 48 minutes long, with 32 aerobic minutes.

I'd rate this as an Advanced/Killer work out, with very basic choreography. The base moves are things like jacks on the floor, lunges on the step and lateral over-the-tops. The moves are made harder by adding more plyo power and more height to the leaps. So a jack on the floor becomes a "flying jack" — you jump up high in the air, spreading your arms and legs apart, bringing them together on the landing. Other moves include karate kicks, deep lunges, and an athletic leap that former ballet students might call an entrechat deux. I was able to do this tape after only one viewing and still get a great workout. That's pretty amazing because it usually takes me a while to get familiar with choreography, often needing to breakdown combinations to get comfortable with them. Not here. Gin cued perfectly, and I followed right along. Though I've learned to enjoy complex choreography, I really appreciated the basic choreography here because it allows you to go full out during the sprint without needing to think. I think this tape will appeal to men as well as women.

Intense Moves is a high impact workout. You'll want to take extra care on those leaps to land with soft knees. There's definitely room to grow with this tape because once you've mastered all the "Hardest" moves, you can always jump higher or add more range of motion to intensify the moves. I thought the cooldown and stretch could be a little longer. But all-in-all, this is one fine short, intense workout.

Production Notes: The production is, IMO, a vast improvement over STEP REEBOK: THE VIDEO (the only other Gin Miller tape I've tried). Gone is the 1984 set and "big brother" Gin. Instead she wears a mic on a head set and cues while doing the workout. And does she cue! She leads a class of 2 women and 3 men who smile occasionally but don't whoop. Gin doesn't whoop either but she does say "hah" sometimes during the sprints on moves like karate kicks. This does not bother me in the way whooping does. The lighting and set are fairly dramatic with high ceilings, a black background and some tall, brown, exaggerated pyramid-like objects in the back. The floor is painted in an attractive, multi-colored, circular pattern in warm colors. The music uses heavy percussion/drum machine sounds with a synth overlay. I find it functional — it keeps the rhythm going, but I probably won't hum it in the street. The overall sound quality is very good, though you do get some "plosive" sounds from the extremely close micing. The outfits are mostly bike shorts and tee-shirts. Gin uses a Reebok heart rate monitor which she recommends at the top of the workout, but is definitely optional. There are 4 energy exertion checks spaced throughout the workout — no heart rate checks. There's a Reebok equivalent to the ENERGY SPRINT visual monitor that lets you know how much time remains in the sprint. It counts down instead of up and is harder to read because they use a very pale color.

I'm extremely impressed by Gin's performance on this tape. She shows more personality than on STEP REEBOK, smiling occasionally and cracking a couple of jokes. But she never gets goofy. Mostly she's no-nonsense, concentrating on cues and form pointers, and cheering you on through the sprints. Yet she still seems to be having fun and I really enjoy working out with her (I'm ready to sign up for a class!). She does all the "hardest" variations of the moves to the max — high leaps, deep squats, full range of motion — while still managing to cue perfectly. How does she do that?

Karen P.
11/19/97

After doing PowerMax , Energy Sprint and 2-hour CIA workouts without any problems, here comes a video that makes me realize my fitness level isn't what I thought it was. Intense Moves is a very difficult 10 sprint workout that has so many power moves and jumps, your heartrate will soar to heights its never been. From hard, harder to hardest, you choose which level fits you, and you can do it for 15-30-45-60 seconds. One move that I don't think I will ever be able to do is the jump from one side of the step to the opposite side without touching the step. I've seen that move on one of the older CIA tapes and would never attempt it fearing my legs would never make it. In a way this video depressed me because I thought I was in top shape. It's amazing that Gin can talk while doing the "hardest" moves, and she has a lot of weight to propel. The non-vocal music is excellent and all new, and makes me like the video even more. Gin gives instruction and tips at the end of the tape, instead of the beginning, hinting that the tape should be viewed before being done. You need to have two full days of rest in between this tape, but she adds that you can do other Reebok tapes the other days. Since I disliked Reebok AeroStep and Reebok Power Step, I was a little hesitant buying this tape. But I was pleasantly surprised at its structure and intensity and will do it once a week adding an extra 20 minutes or so of light aerobics. Gin should do Intense Moves II to keep us from being bored doing this tape over and over as an interval workout. But then again, Energy Sprint II never came to pass. I agree with Wendy that this tape will make the Hall of Fame.

MaryAnn Parker
11/20/97

If any of you advanced exercisers are looking for a good interval training tape - this is it! Gin leads you through a killer 50 minute, athletic (not dancy) step workout (warm up, 30 min interval training, cool down).

Karen P. did a great job of describing the workout, so I won't repeat it here. I would describe myself as an advanced exerciser, and have been doing interval track workouts regularly, and the hardest variation was incredibly tough to keep up with for the entire minute. This was quite an ego-smasher for me! Anyone who can complete this video with the hardest variation throughout is truly a cardio God. This actually reminded me of my track workouts, or my high-school basketball practices - the coach yelling at you to "push it, push it, push it", then, "good job" when you get through.

I know that a lot of people might be hesitant about the length of the tape, but you have to remember that this is an interval workout - throw that "an hour of aerobics are required to do any good" theory out the window. This tape will burn more calories than you ever have before, while dramatically increasing your aerobic capacity.

I think that it would be easy to grow with this tape. Even the base moves (the non-intensified version of the interval) are pretty intense (no basic steps here!), so starting off at that level and slowly increasing the intensity as you get more fit would work very well.

If you didn't like the style of the other Reebok step tapes, don't let that keep you away from this tape. The funky MTV set is gone, and Gin actually talks for real (which is damn impressive given that she does the hardest version throughout). The music is a cool instrumental, which I really liked.

Overall, this is definitely a Hall of Famer in my book. It's actually worth the price of the video to see Gin perform the workout - she is one heck of an athlete.

Gin does a fantastic job cueing in this tape. She constantly gives form pointers, and lets you know that you can drop down in intensity if you need to. I also liked the way that she keeps egging you on to push through the intervals - some of them are incredibly tough, and I really needed her prodding (come on - come on!) to keep going. She talked pretty much non-stop through the workout, but I actually liked it - it's not mindless chatter - she is doing a great job of leading you through the workout. She lets more of her personality show through in this tape, and you really like her. I felt as though she was my personal coach.

Michelle Spina
11/25/97

This really is the hardest cardio workout on video. There are 10 1-minute ultra-high-intensity intervals alternated with 2-minute rest periods. Before this is over, you'll start wondering how 1 measley minute can be so long! I *love* this tape and the way I feel afterward, but I have to admit that sometimes during the workout, I start wishing it was over. It's definitely challenging, and not one you want to undertake on a day you don't feel too great.

Gin says you can do this every 3rd day (2 rest days in between), but I think just once a week would be enough to see significant gains in cardio capacity. Another benefit of the program, which I don't recall Gin mentioning, is that you will build some *serious* power in your legs.

The video is nicely-produced, and I like the set a hundred times better than the first two Reebok tapes. I did notice, though, that after the 4th or 5th interval, Gin says there are 2 hard ones left. I wonder if she really thinks only 2 of the rest are hard (I think they're all tough!), or if this is an editing error. Maybe this was originally closer to the end of the tape.

I recommend this tape to any intermediate/ advanced exerciser. There is lots of room to grow with it, even if you're advanced, because it's so tough. Intermediate exercisers will be able to start with the base moves and work up. I don't think this is a good choice for beginners, though -- I think you need to have already built up a fair amount of leg strength and cardio strength. My grade: A+!

Instructor comments: Kudos to Gin Miller and Reebok for having the guts to put a really hard video on the retail market. I hope this is just the first of many!

Annie S.
1-25-98

Intense Moves is definitely one of my 3 favorite videos. It's a killer interval training workout that allows for much cardiovascular improvement. The only other interval training exercise tape I have is Karen Voight's Energy Sprint. I've had it for about 2 years and it just doesn't quite give me the challenge that it did when I first got it. Don't get me wrong, it's a great tape, but IMO Intense Moves is much more challenging. Gin shows you three levels to choose from for the "sprints". Hard, Harder, and HARDEST. I can do most of the hardest versions, but some of them I'm going to have to work up to. I'd recommend this video to anyone that wants to improve their cardiovascular endurance and who wants a change from regular old aerobics. I know anyone could benefit tremendously by adding this video to their collection.

Instructor comments: Gin Miller is an AWESOME instructor. She is truly one of my favorites. Her cuing is right on and her attitude is wonderful. I hate to sound corny here, but what a woman!!

Becki
1/16/98

This tape is the BOMB!! It makes Energy Sprint look like Elmocize. The thing I like most is that it's the first Reebok workout I've seen that contains nothing corny or distracting. No industrial-disease set, no wall of TVs, no dominatrix outfits, silly spinning things or constant cutaways to musicians. Just the serious (though not TOO serious, since this is Gin Miller) business of kicking your buttocks from here to Venus. I managed to do all but one of the "hardest" sprints, but I was dying at the end! The only one I couldn't do was the entrechat deux, which is fine because now I have something to work up to. I couldn't get over how perfectly both the sprints and recoveries are designed. The only flaw is the too-short ending stretch, but geez, you'd need another tape for that. Just cool down with Ben & Jerry, you deserve it. A big A+ and bravo to Reebok for putting a truly advanced cardio workout on the retail market. Encore, encore!!

Instructor comments: Gin Miller has never been better. She's sincere and encouraging, injecting just a touch of her folksy humor without getting carried away, and is always aware of how hard you're working - she counts down the time, and keeps saying that you can slow down if you wish. Welcome back, Gin, and don't be a stranger!

Sue Bryant
1/5/97

Just thought I'd put in my two cents to help get this into the hall of fame where it belongs. This is one tough workout. Probably the hardest I've tried. In my arrogance I did the first couple RPEs with my step at 8", (I've been doing Energy Sprint at this level) and unfortunately I'd actually had a half of sandwich (and some chocolate). Both were a big mistake. I thought I was going to lose my breakfast, had to move the step to 6" after the second RPE. When I was done I was bright red, dripping sweat. This will definitely go in to my rotation, I love the challenge. This is definitely good training for mountain biking in the Rockies. Anyway, I'm going to buy this tape for my sister who has taken up running because she wasn't getting enough cardio from doing the Firm.

Instructor comments: After viewing a previous video, I was pleasantly surprised that I thought she did a great job with this workout. Good cueing and professional.

Lynn
12/29/97

Karen P. does a great job in giving the details of this workout so I won't go over that again. I'll just offer my opinion. This is definately an advanced workout for the strong of heart. It is very challenging and pushes you to that aerobic/anaerobic edge but after I finish, I always feel as if I have accomplished something and I have so much energy throughout the rest of the day whenever I do this video. I workout in the morning and let me tell you, this video is better than coffee. There is room to grow in this workout since Gin shows viewers three levels of moves that one can do during the intervals. Another VF'er commented that Gin is going to have to come out with a sequel to this video. I totally agree. But until then, I will keep Intense Moves in my weekly rotation. I can't say enough good things about this video.

Instructor comments: Gin Miller is an excellent instructor who gives clear instructions. She is very motivational in this workout and she has a great sense of humor. She is the kind of person you would like to hang out with or be fitness buddies with.

Tiffanee Saunders
12/23/97

Wow! This is such a terrific workout. I've done it twice now, and it probably is the most challenging cardio tape I've ever done. The only other (true) interval tape I've ever tried was Energy Sprint, and I didn't enjoy it at all. I know, I'm in a definite minority on that one! Intense Moves is not choreographically challenging...the moves are all pretty basic, but the intensity level during the sprints is very high. She alternates 1-minute sprints with 2-minute recover periods. After a while, the 2-minute recovery periods don't seem nearly long enough, and the 1-minute sprints seem endless! She and one other member of her crew always do the hardest variation of the sprint, while the others do the base or "harder" variation. I can't say enough good things about this video. For me, it's tough, but fun. (I don't know if fun is really the right word for it, but it comes close.) I thought I was in really good aerobic condition, but with this video, I definitely have room for improvement. I plan on doing this video at least once a week. Gin recommends having at least 2 days in between interval training.

Instructor comments: This is my first video with Gin. It won't be the last. She really is an awesome instructor. Her cuing is impeccable, and she's very motivating. She's obviously in top condition, since she can get through the sprints using all the hardest variations, WHILE TALKING!! I'm in awe.

Melissa F
12/14/97

After years of cranking out intermediate level videos, Reebok surprises everyone with this fantastic interval workout. If NAC Interval Challenge seems like a cakewalk to you, and Energy Sprint no longer leaves you breathless, grab a copy of Intense Moves! The choreography is basic, as is typical of Gin Miller, but that's entirely appropriate for an interval workout.

This is the only video on the market that sends me over the top of my aerobic training zone. It's perfect for any advanced exerciser who wants to get even fitter. Be warned--this one is very high impact. That's not surprising, though--you couldn't get this kind of intensity at home without the powerful moves. The music is somewhat monotonous, but not bad.

Instructor comments: I have a great deal of respect for Gin Miller, but this is the first of her videos that I've liked well enough to put in my regular rotation. I am in awe of her ability to jump so high, talking to you all the while.

Wendy Niemi Kremer
1/25/98

I must admit I didn't like this video when I first watched it but after doing it I have totally changed my mind. It is an AWESOME workout! As the title says, it is intense! If you want a super tough workout in less then an hour, pick this workout. I use a 6 inch step like Gin does and it pushed me to the limit. I really like how Gin gives you 2 whole minutes to recover and then does 1 whole minute of high intensity. She doesn't count you down for a heartrate check but does an intensity check at how hard you are working. I am breathing so hard that I can't talk on the end of the interval. The choreography is very basic nothing complex. The music is great! I think this is why I keep going. Very upbeat. There are 3 men and 2 women. Gin and the guy next to her are doing the hardest intensity. The set has pyramids in the background which is a different setting. Gin does say, " Common, common" a lot but when I actually did the workout, it was helping me to get motivated. The stretches at the end are kinda yoga-ish. I had to do a little more stretching for my calfs, quads and hamstrings but I do with Cathe Friedrich as well so I am used to it. I would highly recommend this tape. I am an advanced stepper who loves complex choreography so I thought this workout wouldn't be too fun. I was wrong. It is just as fun because it pushes me to the limit!

Instructor comments: I give Gin an A+ for being able to talk during this workout because she does the most advanced moves! Her cueing is great and she shows you what is coming up next. She isn't goofy at all in this video like she is in Step Reebok TV or her other New Body workout. Her form is perfect and she has a body that puts the waif Vogue models to shame. She's ALL MUSCLE!

Mandy Lee
1/31/98

I was really curious whether or not I would like this video. People were raving about it, but people also raved about Energy Sprint, which I stared at blandly on two separate occassions before putting it on the Exchange.

Well, this tape's a winner as far as I'm concerned. I think the difference is Gin's presence. There was something about KV that just turned me off; Gin, on the other hand, made me want to try this tape as soon as possible. I think this is the only tape I do that I actually whoop along with - it's that motivating! It is also *so* hard! I always do Cathe F tapes with two risers, but I do this tape with one riser and it still kicks my butt!

I must take a moment, however, to poke fun at the whole feel of this tape. My husband says that in ten years people are going to see this tape and go, "Ew, that looks so 90's!" It's a good thing that Gin is upbeat and having fun on this tape, because otherwise there is a sort of ominous feel about the whole thing. I don't know ... between the very dim lighting, black costmes, robotic "crew," the weird pyramid set ... I always feel like this is some sort of apocolyptic era where the only people that survived are in the desert, dressed in black and doing this workout. In a way it's almost an odd sort of comic relief. Regardless, this tape definitely gets an A+.

Instructor comments: Let me brag for a moment and say that Gin Miller teaches at my health club in Atlanta, and I did her classes before I even saw any of her videos. The main thing I remember was this bizarre euphoric feeling in her classes - you were doing things that you knew no sane person would actually do, but you were so caught up you couldn't possibly stop. This tape has the same sort of feel.

Jen Blaske
1-28-98

This video (to coin Gin) "Kicked my butt!!" I've been static for awhile and this really got the endorphins pumping--I was on an exercise high all day! Simple choreography but "intense", but you can go at your own pace. A definate must for anyone who needs a boost!

Instructor comments: Gin is so enthusiatic and gives wonderful cues. You don't even have to be looking at the TV--she let's you know what the next move is.

Katherine Meirink, PT
2/11/98

There really isn't too much I can add regarding the content of the video; but, for those of you seeking an intermediate to advanced, interval step workout that's not too dancy this is it! Gin cues perfectly, and she seems to utilize a lot of the same steps from her Fit TV and her circuit video, so I am sure most people can follow along; even the first time. And it's fun! While your in the hardest part interval, just when you think you can't do anymore it ends and there is a rest. I feel like superwoman after I'm done with this and combine it with MIS usually. Also since I do a little bit of yoga, I LOVE the stretching at the end, makes me wish I had more time in the day to do a yoga video afterwards. It should be a VF Favorite soon.

Instructor comments: Gin is likeable and talks, but not too chatty. She has excellent cueing and explains the moves well ahead of time. In fact, when doing the tape the first time I was able to follow her almost flawlessly, and I'm choreographically impaired so that must account for something.

Stephanie Bridges
05/26/98

After Energy Sprint, I was looking for a step interval video since I prefer step aerobics to floor (unless it's dancy). This is a tough, challenging video. As the other reviewers said, there is plenty of room to grow. There are 10 one-minute sprints with two-minute rest periods. Gin demonstrates three levels, hard, harder & hardest. A graph appears at the bottom of the screen during each interval with 15, 30, 45, and 60 second choices. A beginner can use a 4 inch step and do 15 seconds, then the base move or go all out for the whole minute. There is a move that involves jumping the width of the bench. I have a Reebok Step and a Reebok Beginner's 4 inch platform that I use when learning tricky and intense moves. So if you aren't sure about jumping over the step, use a low platform (or follow Pierre in the video who simulates the move). There are two heart rate checks (you'll need 'em) and a nice cooldown. Those who do yoga will recognize variations of the triangle pose and downward facing dog. Gin has a well-deserved reputation and this video is worth a go.

Instructor comments: I enjoy Gin's funky cuing ("go there"). She coes across like a true video coach telling you to push yourself...you choose..."A Step...AAAA..." she does the hardest levels and doesn't seem to pant. Whew! I have Step Reebok and Power Step Reebok, despite the post-apocalypse look, her enthusiasm and cuing brings the view into her step class

JEAN WAKEFIELD
5/24/98

This video kicks my butt - in a good way. The warm up is awesome. No baby steps here, she gets right into it and your blood starts pumping from the get-go. Gin is very funny and motivating in this video. You feel like you're in a live class. Comments like "We're cooking now!" "This is a rest, breath." "Here we go, focus - mind and body." It's tough, but well worth the work. Every exercise has a base, hard, harder and hardest. Gin always does the hardest, while she's encouraging you to do what you can. There are about 6 or 7 intervals going from easy to hard back to the last being a little easier. Each one lasts 60 seconds with active rest period in between. Much tougher than Energy Sprint, but a little shorter (48 minutes total with warm up, cool down). I prefer Gin's tape far more than Karen's. Gin gives just the right amount of instruction, but she knows when to stop instructing and start encouraging. ;-) I really like the enthusiasm incorporated into this work out. I always yell along with Gin during the jumps and kicks - HAA! There's tons of room to grow with this one! A+

Instructor comments: Gin is AWESOME! She is incredibly strong and very motivating. I cannot believe she can speak while performing the hardest moves during the intervals! She is the only reason I can make it through this tape and she really makes me accomplished when I finish. I can't imagine suffering like that, and feeling so good about it, for Karen Voight!

Tami Skelton
6-10-98

This tape has already been discussed and praised at length, but I couldn't hold myself back from adding yet another good review!

Yes, this is an incredibly difficult tape, and yes, you will be amazed at Gin's ability to talk throughout the workout. But what I really love about it is the interval structure: you are never doing one move long enough to get truly sick and tired of it. Although I adore Cathe Friedrich, sometimes she repeats combinations so many times that I just want to say "Enough already! I'm tired and I need a shower!"

Another interesting thing about this tape is that each move, when taken individually, is not that difficult. For example, I think most people can do at least one set of 180 degree power lunges - it's when you do them for a full minute that it starts to get challenging.

I also really like how she gives you two minute rest periods - enough time to get a sip of water. I really dislike videos that don't give you enough time to rehydrate, something that Gin has been guilty of in the past (Power Workout).

All in all, this one get's an A from me. Carolyn Sproule
7/8/98

I loved it!!!!! The workout was tough but managable and the relatively short time span fit perfectly into my hectic schedule- more bang for your buck, so to speak. It was easy to follow for those days when you just don't feel like devoting too much thought into your exercise- you just want to get it done! The short 3 minute sprint kept things lively and flowing and before you know it, you're sweaty, tired, happy and done! Highly recommended especially if you're like me and will try to do the toughest moves for the whole 1 minute cycle!

Instructor comments: Gin Miller is fun, friendly and more "real" in this workout than she has been in her previous ones (Aerostep, Best of TV--blech! fake jokey bubbly nonsense). I was completely absorbed into the workout and her cueing and more professional, friendly manner made the time fly by.

liyi amy liang
9/4

This is an interval step workout. After a brief warm up and stretch you do 10 interval sessions. The core of the program is: two minutes of a base move then 1 minute of an intense move (similar to the base pattern). All the steps are easy to learn. This enables you to really work hard during the intense sections. I really like this aspect of the video. Following the intervals is a cool down and stretch.

This video is designed to shock your cardio level. It makes you more fit because you are working harder for the one minute intervals. Gin is excellent at showing how to gradually increase intensity, which means anyone can do this program!

This is one of my favorite stepping videos. I recommend it to anyone who likes stepping.

Instructor comments: Gin is a great instructor. She is motivating, funny, and really empathizes with the exercisers in this video. I think Gin looks much more fit in this video compared to her earlier stepping videos (Step Reebok the Video, Step Reebok the Power Workout). Gin makes me feel like I can do interval training!

Beth Dillman
9/6/98

Much has been written in the VF Forum about the dearth of tough, challenging, meaty workouts that are made widely available in retail. Therefore, I'm glad that Reebok has chosen to use its name, reputation, and marketing power to produce advanced tapes that we won't outgrow in six months or even a year. I'm also grateful that you can find them in your local discount store, usually for under $15. Keep it up, Reebok!

Yes, this one lives up to its name, folks. It kind of sneaks up on you, though. I've found that doing the "hard" or even "harder" variations are doable while I'm in the middle of the workout, but the next day, my body definitely knows it was challenged the day before! The only modification I've had to make is with the jumping jacks. I'm built a lot like Gin, but I just can't do even the easiest version she shows. So I do lunges to the side the way Donna Richardson taught me from "Donna-Mite." The rest of the "hard" variations are actually relatively low-impact--but don't confuse that with low-intensity:)

Because IM and Karen Voight's Energy Sprint seem to be the most famous of the advanced interval training tapes that are widely available, people might ask how they compare. Karen's work is more dance-inspired, her intervals (or sprints) are of longer duration (most are 3-5 minutes) and contain more step combinations. Gin's work in IM is more influenced by sports and athletics--I love that "basketball" shuffle and shot interval toward the end!--and she doesn't combine a lot of different moves to go into each individual interval, probably because she only takes about a minute or so with each one. Both are excellent, and it's great to see Gin Miller re-emerge from those early Step Reeboks and lead a workout that makes the most of her great personality. Welcome back, welcome back, welcome back!

Instructor comments: Gin is one of a kind. Superb teaching skills, genuine friendliness that reaches through the TV screen and grabs you, and what a powerful body. She's what my dad used to call a rock solid woman!

Melissa Cooper
9-16-98

Already in the Hall of Fame, there's not much that hasn't been written about this video. It's got to be one of the best I've ever seen. I'm submitting a review because I consider myself to be at an intermediate cardio level, and bought this at a price I couldn't pass up for *someday*. Well, couldn't wait for *someday* so I did it, at the least intense level, and found it challenging yet manageable. So if you're an intermediate, don't be intimidated. The workout is structured with three intensity levels. While there's no doubt that it'll take some time to do the moves at the hardest level, I wanted to encourage others not to miss a great workout by waiting to be in top form before trying it.

Instructor comments: Wow! What a woman. Why did they put a photo of her in pigtails on the cover? Clear cuing, amazing strength, ability to talk while doing the hardest level. I'm in awe.

Pamela
9/28/98

I don't have a whole lot to add - people have said it all. This is one fantastic workout. One nice thing about it is that it doesn't require a lot of room. I have a pretty small space, but it works just fine. You'll want height though - there's a lot of jumping with your hands over your head. (I have to modify when I work out in my 7-foot ceilinged basement.)

The choreography is basic but not at all boring. That surprised me. I'm at the point where anything simpler than Christy Taylor or Cathe Friedrich tends to bore me, but not this one. I think it's because you don't spend much time on each move, and you're focusing so much on intensity the choreography isn't as significant.

I usually like to do at least 40 minutes of cardio, but this is one tape where 30 minutes is plenty. All in all, a great tape.

Instructor comments: Gin does an excellent job in this video. Her cuing is about the best I've ever seen, and she really motivates you to push your hardest. Yet, at the same time, she reassures you that you should only do what you're capable of, so you don't feel like a wimp compared to her.

Mary Truscott
1/6/99

I am a true die-hard Firm fan; however, I felt I needed some more cardio. After all the rave reviews from everyone here, I decided to try IM. I was afraid it would be too hard - but that's what I needed, something hard aerobically. And this is! It's a fantastic workout! I LOVE it!! I was able to follow along and do the whole thing the first time I did it. She explains EVERY move before you do it. Also, the steps are easy to follow. It will not take long at all to catch on. I was actually able to to the "harder" (and a few "hardest") level throughout the whole workout, but that was tough! I really felt good afterwards, too. I added on Frim Upper Arms and 5 -day abs for a little extra toning. Next time I do it I may add on Firm Lower body for a change. Gin says to wait 2 days in between for this exercise. I wonder why(?). That's ok, I'll alternate with other step tapes or Firm Total Body. I would say that anyone in the Intermediate level could do this on the basic level, but it is definitley an advanced level workout if you do any of the variations (there's hard, harder, and hardest). Gin actually does most of the routines at the "hardest" level -Yowza! She is an aerobic wonder woman!

I give this an A++++

Instructor comments: This was my first experience with Gin and I must say I like her! You feel like she is right there instructing the class. I find her very motivating and encouraging. She makes you feel that no matter what amount of the interval you can do it's ok, that you're still going to get a great workout.

Diana Mason

Great video..buy it. It is an advanced interval training workout utilizing 10 cycles. It is very challenging. You will definitely be sweating after this one.

Instructor comments: Gin Miller is one of my all-time favorite instructors! She cues the moves beautifully and she always looks like she is having fun. She is also very inspiring when she does very hard moves apparently effortlessly.

Barb Price
1/13/99

I’d like to add my $.02 to the many other reviews of this tape. I’ve had it for over a year, but I did it again yesterday after letting it rest for a couple of months. What a GREAT workout! I started thinking this is going to be a chore, but the endorphins really kicked in after the second interval. The time just flew by even though my heart rate was sky high! I couldn’t believe it when Gin said we were on the next to last interval! When it was over, I felt like I could conquer the world! I really like the yoga-style stretches at the end, but I do wish Gin would stretch a little longer. However, I’ve yet to see a cardio tape that had enough stretching at the end. Comparing this to the other interval workouts I feel like the baby bear in Goldilocks...Energy Sprint is too easy, Interval Max is too hard, but Intense Moves is JUST RIGHT!

Instructor comments: What an amazingly strong woman! I like her personality and she cues very well.

Rosemary Matty
matty@cafes.net
2/15/99

Just some quick comments about what I like and dislike about this video.

The cuing is clear, concise and well planned. The segments are interesting, non-repetitive, and time goes by quickly. The background exercisers are good, and the way it's filmed you can take your choice of whom to follow.

What I didn't like was the moves at the most intense level were extremely high impact. If I did those moves, even as a fit advanced exerciser, I'd be in the hospital. As it was, I did hurt my back and hip a bit even at the mid-intensity choice. So I'd say be careful if you're prone to knee or hip trouble. Doing the less intense options makes this video much easier, which was a bit disappointing because I didn't feel I got a thorough workout. Energy Sprint is still my favorite interval work out, and for me, the most thorough—I feel that every part of my body has been worked with it, without risking any joints, unlike this or BodyMax. Still, they are all good—that's just what works for my body.

Instructor comments: I liked her in this video, even though I didn't in others.

Beth
bbunten@fcb.com
2-22-99

I love this tape! Gin is very serious in this tape. It's a tough workout, but it is so worth the time and energy expended! The moves are kept simple and the cueing is excellent as in all of her tapes. If you are looking for a challenging workout this is the one, however she does give three versions of each exercise. All in all - a great tape.

Instructor comments: Gin is excellent at cueing and very clear about how to make the workout work for you.

Bobbie Colby
rcolby1@msn.com
3/1/99

Intense Moves & Interval Max

The reason why I decided to review these two workouts together is because they are IMHO the only 2 high impact, high intensity step videos worth doing. In a strange way, they are similar but very different. Similar in format being alternating short high intensity interval blast with longer less intense step aerobics. Different in music, set, style and choreography. I feel that any high intensity exerciser who loves step should have both of these videos in their collection.

These have both been reviewed and broken down by previous posters. My addition to the reviews would be that each video has a special quality about it that makes it great.

Intense Moves has intervals that begin with the hardest version of a base move that Gin teaches you for One minute. Than you do an "active rest" for a few minutes to let your heart rate restore itself to middle section of your target heart rate range. The special thing about this video is the one minute time-line that gets posted on the screen as you begin the interval. It counts down for you so you can SEE how much longer you have to go to endure these TOUGH moves. Gin also counts down with you and is really motivating by asking you " What's in there" or telling you " keep going, your almost at the top of that mountain." The video is so fun, I just wish it was a few minutes longer.

Interval Max is just as intense as Intense Moves, but a bit longer. Cathe breaks it down really well. She does 10 interval starting with a mini step routine she does 6 times (keeping you in the mid level of your heart rate range) wich last a few minutes. Than she does a interval blast for about a minute or so (there is no time line and I never timed it). The special thing about this video is her uncomplicated "active rest" period of 30-45 seconds of really easy grapevines, walk turns and side steps. The perfect breather to lead you into the next interval. Her moves are a bit more choreographed and dancey than Gin's but very fun. I am drenched when I have completed both of these videos. I can also feel that my fitness level has improved a great deal since I started doing these interval videos. I can run for a longer amount of time now when I decide to use the treadmill. They both advise to allow for 2 rest days in between these videos and I agree. I really feel that after I am done with these I need a few days to work up the energy to do them again. It is also best for the body to recover from such high intensity and prevent injury.

These are both awesome and would recommend these to anyone who needs a challenge. These tapes are priceless.

Instructor comments: Gin and Cathe are the two most professional video exercise instructors on the market. They are both motivating and concerned about "you" the exerciser and it is easy to see that they are constantly aware that we are all out there waiting and listening to their cues and pointers. Gin's moves are more athletic and basic (although intense)and Cathe's moves are equally intense though more choreographed and creative. I would buy any new workout from either one of them without viewing it or hearing reviews first. They are garaunteed to be a great workouts.

RobynA
Robynms1
3/29/99

Intense Moves & Interval Max

The reason why I decided to review these two workouts together is because they are IMHO the only 2 high impact, high intensity step videos worth doing. In a strange way, they are similar but very different. Similar in format being alternating short high intensity interval blast with longer less intense step aerobics. Different in music, set, style and choreography. I feel that any high intensity exerciser who loves step should have both of these videos in their collection.

These have both been reviewed and broken down by previous posters. My addition to the reviews would be that each video has a special quality about it that makes it great.

Intense Moves has intervals that begin with the hardest version of a base move that Gin teaches you for One minute. Than you do an "active rest" for a few minutes to let your heart rate restore itself to middle section of your target heart rate range. The special thing about this video is the one minute time-line that gets posted on the screen as you begin the interval. It counts down for you so you can SEE how much longer you have to go to endure these TOUGH moves. Gin also counts down with you and is really motivating by asking you " What's in there" or telling you " keep going, your almost at the top of that mountain." The video is so fun, I just wish it was a few minutes longer.

Interval Max is just as intense as Intense Moves, but a bit longer. Cathe breaks it down really well. She does 10 interval starting with a mini step routine she does 6 times (keeping you in the mid level of your heart rate range) wich last a few minutes. Than she does a interval blast for about a minute or so (there is no time line and I never timed it). The special thing about this video is her uncomplicated "active rest" period of 30-45 seconds of really easy grapevines, walk turns and side steps. The perfect breather to lead you into the next interval. Her moves are a bit more choreographed and dancey than Gin's but very fun. I am drenched when I have completed both of these videos. I can also feel that my fitness level has improved a great deal since I started doing these interval videos. I can run for a longer amount of time now when I decide to use the treadmill. They both advise to allow for 2 rest days in between these videos and I agree. I really feel that after I am done with these I need a few days to work up the energy to do them again. It is also best for the body to recover from such high intensity and prevent injury.

These are both awesome and would recommend these to anyone who needs a challenge. These tapes are priceless.

Instructor comments: Gin and Cathe are the two most professional video exercise instructors on the market. They are both motivating and concerned about "you" the exerciser and it is easy to see that they are constantly aware that we are all out there waiting and listening to their cues and pointers. Gin's moves are more athletic and basic (although intense)and Cathe's moves are equally intense though more choreographed and creative. I would buy any new workout from either one of them without viewing it or hearing reviews first. They are garaunteed to be a great workouts.

RobynA
Robynms1
3/29/99

I am an intermediate/advanced exerciser and I decided I needed a new challenge, and is this tape it! I found it at my base exchange for $9.49 so I couldn't pass it up. I didn't think I could get a good cardio workout with such a relatively short amount of time devoted to it, but as the title says, the moves are intense. The intervals are hard enough to challenge me for quite a while, however, I pulled a muscle in my lower back when I did this tape for the first time, so I don't know if I can ever work up to the very hardest intervals. I had my step co. step at a 6" height, but I belive the video can be increased in intensity quite nicely by simply raising the step higher. As others have commented, the moves are quite basic, so despite the intensity, the workout may become boring over time. I do think that this video is a good introduction to interval training, but I wish I had used a little common sense and not tried to go all out the first time I did it.

Instructor comments:

Laura E. Cornn
edcornn@aol.com
4/22/99

I love this tape and do it every other week (I do intervals once a week and alternate with Interval Max).

It basically consists of ten 1 minute intervals of tough moves that should take you to the limit of your abilities. Then you recover a little (always seems very short to me :))then you go into a base move and repeat.

The moves are basic but you are challenged! If you are not challenged than either you are not working hard enough or you are a true amazon and I am not worthy *smiles*!

The set and the music are quasi-industrial but, to be honest, I'm working too hard to really pay much attention to it. Though the music is not my all time favorite, it does seem to fit this workout well, so I don't think it will drive anyone crazy, IMO.

I like the length of this tape, too. You work hard in the 30 minute interval section and with warm up and cool down it is all over in 45 minutes. But, don't be fooled! You get a lot of bang for your workout time! In fact, this workout seems to go faster than the time it takes, a sign of a great workout, IMO.

I also like the hard, harder, and hardest variations that Gin demos to give you modifications. I'm still working on the "hardest" versions even after 6 months of this workout. Especially the one where Gin does a jump in the air and crosses her legs back and forth while still in the air, sort of like a demented ballerina! I don't think I will ever be able to do that! And let's not forget the over the step ski jump! Or, rather, I try to forget this one, 'cause it is tough and another I must work up to. I can do it a few times and then I have to join Pierre by pretending to jump over the board to finish the interval. Of course, Gin just keeps on going!

I also think that this type of training will help you reach a better level of cardiovascular fitness. I have noticed a definate improvement when I rollerblade, run or do other aerobic tapes.

And, I got this at Target for $9.99, so what a bargain!

Instructor comments: Gin is great on this video. She provides a blend of humor and encouragement that I love. She also can do some awe inspiring moves (like jumping over the step a zillion times!). .

Kristi Herman
dherman2@tampabay.rr.com
5/20/99

I loved the video. This one really gets me sweating. I feel like it is really worth it to put on the work out clothes and do this workout. She recommends skipping two days before doing the workout again because it is all interval training, and working hard. Not for beginners, definitely for the more advanced. I've been working out with the step for about 6 years now, and this one tops the charts for the best in my collection! Definitely worth the money!

Instructor comments: I love Gin Miller. Her positive - "Go get it!! Dig in dig in!!" attitude really helped me stay motivated during this workout. I am amazed that she continued talking without breathing heavy through the entire workout. This lady is in shape!!

Jill Corcoran
jcorcoran@conifermgt.com
5-2-00

Reebok Intense Moves. Another genius tape.

I admired the fact that my heart was racing at the end of this relatively short workout. I admired the simply choreographed intervals. I admired Gin Miller, who is absolutely riveting in this tape. (My God! The woman could lead armies!) I admired the tough-looking "we-mean-business!" background exercisers. I admired the production quality. I admired this tape on every possible level. However, my feet and knees did not. They complained the next day. I practically to be pulled through the office by rickshaw the day after I did this tape. Grrrr. I now do this video on a 6" step. It's not as an intense as an 8" step, but, if I'm careful to do it only periodically, I get a very decent workout without killing my joints.

My advice based on my experience? If you have no physical limitations and seek an intense workout, this is such a wonderful tape for you! Otherwise, proceed with care.

NOTE: In this video, Gin Miller is more than motiviating. She's charismatic.

Michelle Easton
October 26, 2000

The sheer number of glowing reviews for this tape should convince anyone to go out and purchase a copy. I thought I would add my praise as well as my other thoughts on the video. Since musicgraveyard offers this tape for $4.99, I thought I had nothing to lose by trying. I am so glad I did! This workout is one you love to hate; where you know you should do it to break up your routine but find every excuse to avoid it (like going to spinning class). In spite of this love/hate relationship, it’s definitely a keeper.

For those intimidated by the killer classification, Gin does suggest that you don’t have to do the entire interval. You can try 15, 30, 45 seconds or any amount you like. Even the “base move” can help you stay in the training zone. This makes the tape one you can grow into, especially if you’re starting out as an intermediate/almost-advanced level exerciser.

Instructor comments: While I have been disappointed with Gin’s theatrics in her previous videos, I was thrilled with her no-nonsense attitude for this workout. Her impeccable cuing should also be an example for instructors everywhere. She deserves every instructor award she’s ever received. I also am very impressed with the fact that while I’m nearly gasping for air she carries on her instruction without a missed breath. Incredible!

Catherine W. (missys_mom), ACE-certified

2-28-01



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