Definitely her best of the new series, Solid Gold Hi-Lo is good, but her step tape is awesome! She is a master at using the step vertically as opposed to the horizontal position commonly used in most tapes.
The workout is divided into 3 sections, two of them being the actual workout, then a "cooldown" section at the end, followed by Movemaster and Choreography 101.
The first section is fast paced, with alot of add ons and interesting pivots. As in Solid Gold Hi- Lo, Christi has thrown in some serious rhythm moves that are guaranteed to challenge your body as well as your mind. The first section repeats in its entirety 3 times before moving on to section two.
This section is done with the step facing vertical and is fantastic, reminding me of the Just for Fun Still Steppin tape she did a few years ago. Great combo and again some funky rhythm moves, repeating the entire section twice before the "cooldown".
Honestly, this section just doesn't do it for me. She combines the same segment in SG Hi - Lo as the one done here, and it amounts to swaying your hips from side to side for an eternity. Very little stretching at all in the tape, which also left me wanting. This section was such a letdown after the strong choreography and energy in the other step sections.
Musically, Christi maintains once again her high standards, the moves are a mix of high and low intensity, with the usual modifiers in the backround, although I felt the set was somewhat crowded.
Overall, major fun from a major force in the fitness world, a keeper in my book.
Likeable, as always. Christi always presents herself and her backround exercisers as just a bunch of buddies working out together, her enthusiasm is contagious!
I was *SO* disappointed in this workout the first time I did it. The music does not compare well with Christi's last several workouts. The teaching/cueing seems not as good. I had visions of the world ending because Christi had put out a bad workout. But . . . after the hour was over, I realized that I had done the whole thing without watching the clock and the time had flown by. So, was it really so bad? I knew if it had been bad, I would have stopped after 15-20 minutes, cuz that's what I do when I'm not having fun.
I let it sit in my "new" pile for another week or so and tried it again. Some of my disappointment had worn off and I was more open to giving it a fair shot. Well, lo and behold, I had a blast. I don't deny that one's initial impression might be the same as mine, but even if this is not in the same fun-field as Step Heaven, Still Steppin', etc., it is an awesome workout in its own right. If this had been the first Christi step workout I'd ever done, I'd have been ecstatic -- it just goes to show what effect your expectations can have on you.
As for the workout itself, it is high-intermediate/advanced in intensity and advanced in choreography. The first section is horizontal step with 4 different combos. The second section is vertical step, also with 4 different combos. The time absolutely flies. The music, which I think where my major disappointment came from, is not nearly as good as Christi's past offerings, but still much better than the majority of stuff out there. The cooldown is basically standing and shaking your hips back and forth -- a little boring.
If you get the DVD version as I did, you'll also get some bonus workouts such as abs, Pilates, squats. These are nice little extras, but there was nothing particularly special or outstanding about them; they were so-so. To sum all this up, this is one of the best and most fun step workouts ever made. It's definitely an A+ offering, despite it not being equal with her others.
I have done all of Christi's workouts, and I think, after having done this one only 3 times so far, it is going to be one of my favorites. Right up there with Step Heaven, which to me is the perfect step workout.
Solid Gold Step is similar to the Totallies only in that the warm up is part of the routine. The choreography is more similar in complexity to Step Heaven, and slightly more difficult than Still Steppin'. It seems like it is taught more quickly, and there is a little less taking it from the top after each little step is taught. In this one Christi teaches a few parts from the combo before she goes back to the top--much less than both the Totallies and the Just for Funs. (Or at least it feels like it.) I love the new arm patterns, especially in the second section, and there are just some fun new moves that make me keep wanting to do this workout!
The background exercisers are so precise and well practiced--as they always are in Christi's workouts--and it just makes the workout that much more enjoyable for me.
The music is not up there with Step Heaven's music, but it's not bad, either.
I realized after looking closely that one of the modifiers is Michele, who was in 9801. I loved her in that, and its great to see her again. I hope she'll be up front again sometime soon. (I'd love to see her instead of Theresa in the Solid Gold Cardio video!)
Ok, so anyway, I love it, love it, love it!
Christi is, as usual, amazing. Down to earth, fun, singing, cueing perfectly... She is just perfect for me!
I was in the mood for something fun and this was it. I'd been putting it off because it is WAY over my challenged choreo ability, but I had watched it again a couple of days ago and felt ready to give it a try--but giving myself permission to mess up or stop early if I had to. I actually surprised myself with how much I actually DID get. I had to follow the modifiers a few times AFTER I got lost though, lol. Speaking of modifiers...I like that Christi uses them. There are four exercisers in the back row modifying to less challenging choreography...at least one of them is visible most of (if not all) the time. Christie and two other exercisers in the front row are doing spins and turns, etc. I was actually able to to many of the spins and turns which surprised the heck out of me. The workout is just around 50 minutes or so (my HRM said 53, but I never do the cool downs exactly as on the workouts).
This DVD also included "Movemaster" which has Christi (and one other I believe) showing all the combinations at a slow speed with their backs to the camera so you can get the correct lead leg.
There was also a "Choreography 101" on the DVD which has Christie (facing us) and two others (backs to us) showing some common step moves...it's a continuous string of moves so a beginning exerciser (or stepper) could use this as a workout--nothing tricky here. I didn't time it though, so don't know how long it is.
This is instantly one of my favorites. I got it on vhs as a freebie with her Cardio Collectibles DVD and I love it. I feel like I'm dancing through the whole thing.
The first half is horizontal step and it has great choreography that you can ham up if you like ! The second half is vertical step and the same thing goes. Hard to say which half is better. Expect turns and twists and to sweat ! Christi & two others dressed in black & purple do the advance options and (I think) four dressed in black do the modifications in the back.
The music is ok - it's a fast paced workout so I didn't really notice it much, all I'll say is that it went well with the workout. Some more recognizeable songs is always nice (like in Totally Hot Cardio). About that fast paced thing - you have to be on your toes for this one as changes happen fast BUT her excellent cuing makes it easy.
My only caveat - the cool down. I don't like it enough that I don't do it. The music is ok (credit is due to her son who composed & performed the song) but it's almost as if Christi hit a choreo blank - too much hip rocking back and forth on the spot. I think she's trying to be funky but it is too mellow for me.
I am a huge Christi fan - I love most of her workouts and can't get enough of her innovative choreography.
January 12, 2006