Crunch: Cardio Groove

Malin Zaki
Year Released: 1996

Categories: Floor Aerobics/Hi-Lo/Dance

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I really like this video, but have difficulty doing it on carpet - there are lots of moves where you drag your feet. I found it more intense than expected, but some of that intensity may have been due to the carpet. I thought the routine was fun and dancy, but the moves are broken down, so that the more funk-impaired exercisers (myself included) can try to get the routine. It's relatively short (35 minutes), which is nice for a light day.

Instructor Comments:
Very fun, bubbly, cues well.



This video is definitely made for dancers, or least someone with more talent than I have! If you like very dancy, hip-hop style aerobics, you'll love this. As for me, I couldn't get much further than the warmup, and I didn't do a great job at that. It looks fun, but my body won't cooperate.

Annie S.


This is a fun video! I got it at least 6 months ago, and I've been meaning to put in a review ever since. Starting out, it's plenty of a challenge. As I know the routine, however, I find myself repeating the next segment over and over as the tape "teaches" it at half-time.

The atmosphere in the class is lots of fun -- everyone's very "hip". In fact, I did this tape first & then moved onto another one with the most annoying Crunch instructor ever! Now I really value the fun of this tape.

For the long-term....this isn't much of a cardio workout. But for a quick, FUN just can't do better!

Instructor Comments:
Malin Zaki is a lot of fun. I like her confident, easygoing attitude. In fact, I can admit it -- I found myself wishing that I HAD her "city" attitude! She's a very clear instructor as well. I would like to see more videos with her & her style.



Good: I personally really liked this video. I'd been involved in dance-type activities when I was younger, but had not exercised in years. If you like dance type areobics, this tape is good. Also, for the beginner, it's great because each moved is first demonstrated, then broken down & explained in detail. So, as a beginner, I didn't feel very intimidated by it. I like the music, and I like the 'feel' of the video; maybe it's because I'm younger, but I sometimes don't like doing some video's (like say, Jane Fonda) because I felt like I had to do everything just like the instructor, & I don't feel that with this Crunch tape.

Bad: The part that's good for the beginner, the 'break-it-down & show you' part becomes a little annoying as you get more advanced. Also, the tape isn't very long. While this is good for someone starting up a fitness program (like I was), it starts to lack after a while, so I've taken to doing 2 Crunch videos in a row. And, as I said before, you really have to like dancy moves, or else you may not enjoy it. The only other problem (which seems to be a problem in a lot of Crunch videos) is the camera angles. While the tape doesn't involve any serious or fancy footwork that you have to concentrate on, it does get distracting when the camera angle keeps cutting back & forth.

All in all, I do still really enjoy this video. I got it as a gift, and it was one of the best presents I've ever received. I'd give it an A, especially for beginners. For more advanced exercisers, it's fun, so if you're in the mood for a 'light' day... knock yourself out!!

Instructor Comments:
I really liked Malin; I found her very energetic, without looking just plain stupid. Her energy didn't seem 'contrived' or 'by the book' like some other instructors. I think her cueing is good; she usually gives ample time for you to prepare for the next move.

Sharon M


Crunch videos have a certain "look and feel" and this one goes with the flow: that is, it is professionally produced and presented in a colorful studio with extremely pretty 20-something, all female, "whooping" participants (I think some of the whooping is overdubbed). This is only about 35 minutes long with intermediate level choreography and advanced-beginner intensity. The choreography is definitely in the street dance style and itís a blast with no really dumb moves. Not surprisingly, it does have a few too many half-time presentations to make it as intense as it could have been if they had let us flounder for a while trying to learn all the steps. The teaching, cueing and presentation are all excellent and untainted by the too-cool, trendy talk you might expect given the young cast and funk style of the moves (not like The Grind tapes!).

With this tape, Iíve begun marking on the back of the box the point where they begin several executions of the full routine at tempo (in this case there are 5 repetitions that run from 26:00 to about 30:00). This gives me a bit of an (unwanted!) interval training effect while the tape rewinds but so it goes; itís better than half-time executions again and again and again. Doing it this way does increase the cardio intensity a bit along with making the kinesthetic quality of the workout more stimulating. Overall grade: A-.

Instructor Comments:
Malin Zaki is very young (looks 20-something) and excellent in her teaching and cueing. She is upbeat without being too bubbly. Iíd love to see her in more tapes especially doing her own choreography. The box blurb states her "Fitness philosophy" as "Energy feeds energy." I like it.

Annie O.