CIA 9902: Kickbutt Combat

Keli Roberts
Year Released: 1999

Categories: Boxing/Kickboxing/Martial Arts , Floor Aerobics/Hi-Lo/Dance

I just got this video off the exchange, and I consider that to be a GREAT exchange! The other reviewers have already broken down the workout sufficiently, so I won't go into that; instead I'll just give my impressions/opinions about the workout in general.

For starters, I like Keli's kickboxing "style" much better than Janis Saffell's. I had both 9702 and 9809 and traded them away because I don't care for the heavily choreographed kickboxing that Janis seems to favor. To me, getting a good workout from kickboxing requires that you be "on" all the time, giving it your all, and with Janis pausing to break down all that choreography, my heartrate just plummeted. However, with Keli's style, my heartrate stayed in my zone the entire time; at times, during some of the more intense kicking sections, it even went anearobic and I had to take it down a notch. Now, granted, I am not a cardio queen, but I can hold my own through any of Cathe's tapes, including MIC and Interval Max. Keli also gave great form pointers on the kicks unlike those in other videos (I haven't tried PK or Tae-Bo, so I can't speak for those)--for example, Keli tells you to raise your leg up to the side and put your foot up near your butt for a side kick, which really seemed to help me get the proper positioning for that kick, something I've had trouble with in the past.

On to the toning. I must say that I was a bit skeptical about this section, because I primarily work out with Cathe's or Firm strength tapes, and even throw in trips to the gym occasionally for strength work. I didn't think the tubing would be effective. I was wrong! What a nice change of pace! Now, I'm not saying that tubing is as intense as a heavy weight workout or that I'll start doing tubing exclusively, but it is definitely a great crosstraining option. And I really felt the tubing work, too. It creates more of an endurance burn rather than muscular failure, as with weights. I did notice that the strength work was not evenly balanced throughout all the muscle groups, i.e. shoulders were worked very thoroughly, but biceps only got 1 set of curls. And the lower body work was not as intense as the upper body work. But personally, I have been looking for a workout like this because I think it will make a nice complement to all those heavy-duty weights tapes; it seems to be more the shaping and toning type of workout rather than muscle building. I also tend to overwork my biceps (show-off muscles!!) and I have noticed lately that my shoulders are in a sad state compared to the rest of my arm. So I can definitely use the extra shoulder work and the endurance style workout.

If you are looking for a well-balanced, heavy-duty strength workout, you won't find it on this tape. But if you're like me and looking to improve certain areas of your body as well as crosstrain, then I think you'll find this tape a nice change of pace. And if you are frustrated with 9809 because of the choreography, cueing, and trouble keeping your heart "in the zone," then you will most likely really enjoy Keli's kickboxing style much more.

Renae Brock