Video Fitness

Cardio Sweatfest

Tracey Staehle

The first workout on this tape is Kicboxing. It consisits of 7 drill/combos involving punches and kicks. The layering of each move builds the intensity. This is a low impact but very high intensity workout. It includes arm and leg drills throughout the workout. This is a total body workout as it conditions the aerobic and muscular systems in one hour. This tape works. May not be every one cup of tea but if you have went a workout that works but is body friendlt tis is it.
Hilo is a 30mins workout. It has a low impact modifier, music is a latin beat. Efficent workout for a quick workout.


Cardio Sweatfest, led by relative fitness newcomer Tracey Staehle, is actually comprised of two workouts, a 60-minute kickboxing routine and a 36-minute Hi-Lo section. Either of the two workouts can be selected from the main menu; this will lead you to submenus which include several premixes for each workout.

Kickbox Sweatfest is a drill-style kickbox workout. For the most part, Tracey keeps the combinations quite simple, starting slow at first but kicking up the pace and intensity as you continue. Tracey uses some different terms for some of the moves--eg, back fist/reverse punch, which she also calls temple-sternum--but these are broken down in the "Kickbox Demo" segment featuring Jessica, a martial artist. The workout begins with a 3.5-minute warm-up which starts slow and then incorporates some of the punches and kicks to stretch. For the main body of the workout, there are 8 total combos, each about 6-7 minutes long; with the exception of a few jump kicks, the moves are mostly low-impact, with one of the background exercisers always showing modifications.

Here are some basic breakdowns:
Combo 1: jab-cross-jab-kick
Combo 2: jab-upper-jab-squat
Combo 3: jab-cross-jab-rib-squat-side kick
Combo 4: high block-cross-low block-elbow smash-knee smash-back kick
Combo 5: jab-cross-jab-touch foot-straight punch
Combo 6: step front kick-temple/chest-temple/chest
Combo 7: front kick-back kick-high block-elbow smash
Combo 8: step front kick-block sequence

Tracey mixes things up a bit, sometimes repeating just the kicks or punches at a faster tempo. Following the combinations, there is an additional 7 minutes of arm drills and 3.5 minutes of kicking drills--you definitely will be fried by the end of these! Tracey finishes with a 4-minute cool-down which includes push-ups and some brief stretching for the lower body. The premixes include Shoulder Shredder (19 minutes), Butt Blaster (19 minutes), and Short Sweat (35 minutes; features Combos 4-8).

The Hi-Lo Sweatfest workout has a *slight* Latin flavor but also includes more traditional hi-low moves such as grapevine and some kicks as well. There is a Hi-Lo Combos submenu which features at total of 9 combinations. Unlike in the kickboxing workout, however, these combinations are not stand-alone; rather Tracey teaches this workout in an add-on style with frequent instructions to "take it from the top" and repeat all of the moves. I found the choreography to be a bit trickier here (and Tracey's cueing to be less effective), but given the high number of repetitions, I was eventually able to at least approximate all of the moves. The 4-minute warm-up introduces the opening sequences and also includes some brief stretches. All of the exercises are done up to tempo from the first time around, so your heart rate definitely stays up. In addition, at about the 13-minute left mark, Tracey does a long (4 minutes) jumping jack sequence that is intended to get your heart rate up even further before running through the entire routine one last time. The 6-minute cool-down is led by one of the background exercisers, Donna; it features some of the same choreography as the workout plus some of the moving stretches from the warm-up. The premixes for the Hi-Lo workout include a 44-minute version which incorporates the kickbox drills and an 18-minute combos-only series (no breakdowns).

I'd give the kickboxing portion of this workout 5-stars; the simple choreography combined with intense drills was right up my alley, although those who enjoy more complex workouts may be bored here. I've never been a big fan of Hi-Lo, but the workout here was well-done and also intense, so I'd give it 4-stars. This DVD is a provides plenty of options and is a good deal for intermediate exercisers and above.

Instructor comments: This was my first experience with Tracey, and I liked her overall. I thought she cued the kickboxing segment pretty well; in general, she started off each combo at a slower tempo and then picked up the pace. I had trouble following only the very last drill, which incorporates a lot of varied blocks. Tracey does seem to assume you know many of the moves already, which is why watching the "Demo" segment first is probably a good idea. I didn't think she did as well leading the Hi-Lo portion. She does mirror-cue, but she seemed a little forgetful of this at times. Also, she wasn't consistent in how she performed the routine--ie, sometimes she'd show a higher impact version, sometimes a lower impact one, but she rarely cued this in advance.

Beth C (aka toaster)

March 3, 2008

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