The Firm: Complete Aerobics & Weight Training (BSS2)Emily Welsh
Year Released: 2003
Categories: Circuit Training (cardio and weights)
As stated below, this workout has already been broken down quite well by other reviewers so I will just offer some opinions. This is a very complete and fun workout. It is predominantly strength-oriented but my heart rate gets up and stays up for most of the workout. It is well-sequenced and well-paced and I am able to use heavier weights than in many of my other circuit style workouts. There are three cardio intervals. The first is floor, which is kickboxing and very fun and my personal favorite! The second uses the low section of the fanny lifter for a fun and well-cued little step routine. The final cardio section is light four-limb (using the twigs) which is the only section I had any trouble learning. This may be because at this point in the workout I am not so fresh :) At any rate the choreography is pretty simple and it is fun to do. The workout incorporates the Fanny Lifter and sculpting stick. I have neither and don't find it to be detrimental. I use a sturdy kitchen step stool in lieu of the short fanny lifter and my full size club step with 4 risers for leg press. When they stack the two I just put my step stool on my step and it works fine. In my opinion the sculpting stick is completely unneccessary. It is used for balance in a few places (which I don't need) as well as during the floorwork. The "twigs" are removed and used during light four-limb; I just used my own light handweights. In fact the stick is the most annoying thing about this workout- moments feel like a commercial for the dang stick with several references to its' general usefulness. ("What a great tool!" Emily says more than once, sounding not at all scripted. Insert eye roll.) Oh, one last thing that bugged me at first was how absolutely choreographed these ladies are. Like when the cardio ends they just stop. And stand at attention like someone flipped an off switch. It no longer bugs me but it used to, but could potentially irk someone else. I like how various modifications are shown throughout. This workout is accessible to all levels, even an absolute beginner- though they would be in for quite a workout! With repeated use this has become a stand-by for me and really is a great workout.
Prior to this I only knew Emily from the Pinks and she rather inexplicably bugged me. I did not expect to like her, or this. I was pleasantly surprised that she is not annoying. She cues pretty well and give good form pointers throughout. She is a bit scripted, but of course, this is The Firm.