Strong and Smooth MovesKaren Voight
Year Released: 1995
Categories: Body Bar , Floor Aerobics/Hi-Lo/Dance
The reviews above already give an excellent idea of the structure of this video, so I'll stick to my personal feelings and impressions.
I am an advanced exerciser, and I use this video as a change of pace from the FIRM on my strength days. The choreography and music are very different from the FIRM's; this video gives you aerobics in one longer section, and during the strength section you're working for endurance, with lower weights and higher reps. The low impact section isn't very challenging for me, aerobically, but since I use it on "strength days" I don't mind. I do think this video's aerobic segment is about as challenging as a 25 minute low-impact workout can get.
I never cease to be amazed at the quality of Karen's cueing. Often when I follow one of her form pointers I get that "Aha!" feeling--you know you're doing something right because you really feel it in the target muscle. Although you use lighter weights for this video's strength segment than you would use for the FIRM, Karen's subtle variations and constant form pointers really help you isolate the working muscle, and as a result I am sometimes more sore after Karen's videos than after the FIRM's.
The production quality is also excellent. Sometimes you feel as if you're in the same room with Karen. Although the flashy lights and camera angles might make it hard to pin down the routine the first few times through, in the long run I think it keeps the video interesting and exciting. I tend to like videos that make you feel like you're "performing", and this is definitely one of those. I also love the music; there are a number of driving piano interludes that really get me going. Although one or two reviewers complained that there were no "real bodies" among the participants, I find the participants' physiques very inspiring.
All in all, I think this video is an excellent, time-efficient workout, and I agree with Sue that Karen comes across as more personable while maintaining her no-nonsense style.