Classical Stretch 2008 TV Series (2005), Pure Stretch

Miranda Esmonde-White
Year Released: 2008

Categories: Athletic Stretch

NOTE: I am re-submitting this review, as I realized that in my original review, I omitted an episode from Disc 2.

Below is my review of Classical Stretch Season 5, the Pure Stretch Episodes. This is a set of 2 DVDs from the 2008 series; there is a second set of 2 DVDs also from the 2008 series called Tone & Stretch that I am NOT reviewing here. From what I have gathered, the main difference between Pure Stretch and Tone & Stretch is that the former contains less abs work and less pure arms work.

Miranda emphasizes that these workouts will benefit EVERYONE. However, at the beginning of each episode, she notes which athletes might specifically appreciate the focus of that particular workout.


Bonus—Alignment (w/Sahra & Brendan on tennis court; 24m)
Especially for tennis players; all standing
Warm-up includes toe taps & arm circles
Moves into plies to stretch the hips; includes contractions, heel lifts
Standing stretch emphasizes the shoulders, chest, & back, including windmills & stirring the pot
Foot articulation & balance work; side-to-side lunges w/airplane
Long series of calf stretches (also quad stretch), additional feet articulation & final stretch

515, Hamstring Stretch (w/Sahra & Brendan on fairway; 24.5m)
Especially for football players
Warm-up includes arm throws, sloppy tennis, & leg kicks
Standing stretch for back & chest; includes bow & arrow
Tough plie work includes heel lifts & little jumps
At 12m left, move to barre for hip, quad, & hamstring stretches as well as kick series
Finish with stretches for calves & back at barre

505, Hip Range of Motion (Miranda alone in cabana on beach; 24m)
Especially for athletes, including basketball & volleyball players
Gentle warm-up with flowing arm movements moves into gentle plies/hip stretches
Brief arms work moves into longer twisting/side lunge series
Standing flow emphasizes stretching the hips
Long leg lift series includes alphabet, hip cleaners, hip circles, & more
Long (5m) final stretch includes hips & calves; ends with forward bend

506, Endurance & Stamina (w/Sahra & Brendan on golf course; 24.5m)
Especially for skaters
Warm-up upper body with sports-like moves (e.g., throw ball, throw dart, pretend tennis)
Long series of fast, vigorous “karate kicks” to both front & side
Plie series with arm movements
Standing flow with side lunges and emphasis on chest & shoulders
At 12m left, move to floor for long (6m) series of side leg lifts
Finish with 4m lying hamstring/hip stretches & 2m seated hamstring/back stretches

507, Back & Hip Flexibility (Miranda alone at 12th hole; 24m)
Especially for golfers
Begin warm-up w/wrist & hand work, including shaking hands; end w/arms & shoulders and brief standing hip stretches
Standing flow emphasizes the back, including airplane series & twists
Feet articulation and leg kicks both front & side as well as drawing “u”
At 10m left, move to floor for seated quad stretch, nice series of side/back stretches, and finish with final leg/back stretches

511, Upper Body Flexibility (Miranda alone in Cabana at night; 24m)
Especially for swimmers/divers
Warm-up a bit dancier than usual, with upbeat music; moves right into arms work and then right into hip work including leg kicks, “u” & “v” moves, and side kicks
Standing stretch emphasizes the upper body, including twists & giant Figure 8
Low barre used for quad stretches & long hamstring series
Hold barre to work on feet; end with calf/side stretches

512, Hips & Upper Body (w/Sahra & Brendan on beach; 24.5m)
Especially for those who play water sports
Warm-up emphasizes opening the shoulders; ends with calf stretches & brief plie work
Standing stretch emphasizes the shoulders, including unique work first with bent elbow, then straight
At 12m left, move to floor for lying stretches; deep hip & hamstring work (e.g., baby stretch)
Finish seated for foot articulation work, leg lifts, & kicks


513, Hips Stretch (Miranda alone on beach; 24m)
Especially for athletes
Brief warm-up with “fake” sports moves
Plies with jumps and fast kicks
Standing side bends; work in deep plié squat for hips
At 14.5m left, move to floor for side lying leg work
Seated quad stretches; lying stretches for quad & IT band; finish seated
Had lots of visible editing cuts & felt rushed!

514, Lengthen & Stretch Legs (w/Sahra & Brendan on beach; 24.5m)
Especially for runners
Very brief warm-up; moves right into plies with toes up
Standing stretch with a strong emphasis on chest: includes spinal twist, airplane variations, alphabet
Calf stretches and brief side kicks
At 10m left, move to floor for quad stretches and abs with bicycles; stretch abs on stomach & do brief leg lifts; quick stretch on all 4s, then end seated

516, Hips & Legs Stretch (Miranda alone in market square; 24m)
Especially for football players/those who do a lot of running
More vigorous warm-up: starts with arm circles, moves into little jogs & kicks
Standing stretch with large movements—e.g., rolling the spine, windmills, airplane & twists
Plies, moving into side lunges
At 9m left, go to barre for hip & hamstring stretches; end with side stretches, forward bend, general stretch
Kind of bland!

517, Range of Motion (w/Sahra & Brendan on tennis court)
For improving tennis game
Warm-up includes reaches and front toe taps
Continues with hip rotations, leg lifts, and hip stretches
Standing segment stretches the back, triceps, & shoulders; finishes with washes
At 12m left, goes to floor for quad stretch, seated leg lifts, and additional stretches including butterfly, back & neck stretches, and twists

518, Hips & Joint Flexibility (Miranda alone in marketplace; 24m)
Especially for skaters (figure or hockey)
Warm-up includes single & double shoulder rolls; moves into feet articulation w/slow kicks
Standing stretch includes large movements for shoulders & entire spine
At 15.5m left, move to floor for side leg work, including side extensors, inner thighs, & outer thighs
Long (6m) lying hip & hamstring stretches; finish w/seated forward bends & brief neck/back stretches

519, Lower Back Release (Miranda alone at 12th hole on golf course; 24.5m)
Especially for your golf game
Warm-up includes Frisbee & ball throws, single & double arm circles; move into short plié sequence with hip stretches
Standing sequence emphasizes full body stretches for back, including twists & windmills; ends with shoulder stretch
At 14m left, begin barre work with feet articulation & hip isolation work; move into long series of hip/hamstring stretches with barre; end with slow leg lifts & brief back stretches

Instructor Comments:
Miranda can be an acquired taste, as she talks throughout the workouts and can be a bit goofy at times (eg, saying "whoops!" when she loses her balance), but I really like her. However, one thing I didn't like as much about this series is that the mic is positioned very close to Miranda's mouth, which sounded a bit odd to me; in fact, the sound sometimes seemed a bit out of sync. For a few of the episodes, Sahra & Brendan are mic'ed as well, and they make brief comments in response to Miranda's questions.

Beth C (aka toaster)