Video Fitness

Walkblaster: Slim & Thin

Leslie Sansone

(This workout is from the Slim Shape & Sculpt series, commonly known as the Walkblaster series.)
I found this workout enjoyable and nice change from Leslie's standard walking workouts. The warm-up is her "four basic moves" plus tapping on the Ramp. She does not use hamstring curls at all but the incline sort of makes up for that. Leslie does fewer arm movements then in her regular walking workouts. The workout itself consists of some faster more aerobic portions alternating with some slower walking in which Leslie tries to emphasize using the Ramp for muscle toning (but it is still walking not lunges or squats). There is a meter that comes up at one mile -if you're following our mile system- but there is no other milage meter at the end. The one mile meter comes up at less than 14 minutes meaning the fast sections must be faster than most of her walking workouts. Leslie's stretch at the end emphasizes the hamstrings instead of her usual calves.

The moves Leslie has added to use the Ramp are tapping the Ramp; 3 steps and a tap with the tap on the ramp (she does this moving to the side so the taps are on the green and purple sections); stepping on the blue section and tapping the green or purple sections, stepping back and doing the other side; tapping across the body (left foot taps purple, right foot taps green); walking wide on to the Ramp (becomes sort of a V-step); and a mambo with the front step on the Ramp (this mambo seems more like a samba to me).

Leslie does not use the words left and right in her cueing at all. If you are used to her WATP series and later where she starts on your right and mirror cues, you will have to pay attention because she starts on your left if you are mirroring her; side steps start to the left, kicks and knee lifts start with the left. Her directional cues are usually "this side" or by color on the Ramp. When she cues by color she does by what is in front of her. So when she says step on the green, I am stepping on the purple. (I also have a Gin Miller Ramp workout and Gin manages to mirror cue the ramp colors appropriately). Any time she does a movement in which only one foot is striking the ramp she will switch lead legs and do the other side. She does not make this change as smoothly as other instructors such as Gin Miller, Petra Kobler and Kathy Smith. If you are really conscientious about the beat it feels as if you got off beat because of the transition to the other leg.

Some general notes on the equipment, set and background exercisers:
The "Walkblaster", as Leslie calls it, is the Ramp (it says so on the ones in the video) from Gin Miller's Ramping workouts. There are three colors used to identify where to step - blue in the middle, green on the left and purple on the right. Leslie only talks about using it at the lowest incline.
The set is open and well lit. The logos for the series and the workout are projected on the wall and floor in white light. The light projection logo for the workout says Slim & Tone but everything else - the box, the title at the beginning says Slim & Thin.
The background exercisers are Joanne, from Leslie's Studio ("Grandma Jo"), Tracy from WATP for Abs, Dre from WATP Express, and three new walkers: Jimmy, who is more muscular than most of Leslie's background exercisers, and the mother and daughter team of Kim and April. April really makes the most of every move almost hopping on the Ramp sometimes. If you need encouragement to increase the intensity of Leslie's workout then just watch April.

Overall I enjoy this workout. I regularly do a range of cardio from Leslie's walking workouts, to Donna Richardson to the Firm. The intensity of this workout is a little higher that Leslie's normal walking workouts but not much. At about 29 minutes it is good for the days I go to work when 30 minutes is the ideal length of workout.

Instructor comments: I like Leslie. Her cuing is okay but she doesn't really get mirror cuing which is a shame since a big part of her audience is beginners. In this series she starts on the left and does not give right and left instruction -- usually "this side" or "now the other leg" but se cues the Ramp/Walkblaster colors as she sees them not as the exerciser mirroring her does.

I don't know if it is the ramp or the fact that she starts on the left but she seems to get off beat less in this set of workouts.

She is her normal chatty self which does not bother me but does bother some people.



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