Denise Austin
Year Released: 1997

Categories: Floor Aerobics/Hi-Lo/Dance , Total Body Workouts

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The video is an aerobic video with intervals of toning sections using weights. If you like dancy workouts, you will like this one. I prefer more athletic type workouts and am not particularly adept at the dancy type moves that she uses. I found it hard to follow because she just assumes you know certain moves, shouts them out and then is doing them quickly. This video is very typical of her. If you know all the moves, and can keep up with her steps, I think it would be a good workout, but not for me. This is definitely not a beginner workout.



Let me say right off the bat that I am "choreographically impaired", and for that reason I have always detested aerobics. I like the repetion of resistance training. This interval training video combines aerobics with weight work, with the emphasis on the cardio. My heart rate went up and stayed there for almost the entire workout (weighted segments also), and even poor ole' me could follow the aerobic parts. I got a great cardio workout. Don't get this video if you are looking for a heavy duty resistance training segment because it isn't there. But there is enough to consider a light weight day, and the way it is choreographed your heart rate stays up even during the weights sections. I use this video on the days I want cardio work but don't feel like using the treadmill. The legwork towards the end is standing leg work, and helps bring your heartrate down slowly, which I find is a good segue into the floorwork and abs. This tape has a good solid ab section at the end, and an adequate stretch. I get a good cardio workout, worked up a good sweat and felt like I had accomplished something good at the end of the tape. I give this tape a firm "A", and recommend it to intermediate exercisers.

Instructor Comments:
I have read many of the reviews of Denise's videos, and frankly, I can't agree with the negative tones of many of them. I am a solid intermediate exerciser, and I like her upbeat style. Yes, she is perky and energetic, but hey, I don't want a drone motivating my exercise programs. I have no problems with her cueing, although I have seen her get out of step a time or two. Personally, I don't mind because I like a "real person" approach--someone who isn't PERFECT that I can never live up to. I am a perfectionist, but doing her videos I feel like I can attain my goals. Some of the other instructors are so physically daunting that I almost hate to do the videos because I feel like their physique level is beyond my grasp. I find her a solid, consistent instructor who does a good job on motivation and instruction.

Terri Osborne


I went through the video three times and couldn't keep up with the moves. I have a lot of her tapes, and like the other ones but this one went into the trash. And what is with that guy squinting all the time?

Melanie McCabe


I am an intermediate exerciser. The Sizzler video has done wonders for my energy level along with reshaping my body. She is intense and if you follow her curriculum and maintain a healthy diet as suggested, you WILL see results in a few days and ultimately in weeks to come.

Instructor Comments:
Denise Austin is a very upbeat instructor. Yes, she has the "cheerleading" attitude, but how else can you stay motivated after a long days work? I do not understand what other people expect from an instructor. They are there to also help keep you motivated at least 3 - 4 times per week!

Terri Dwyer


I am an intermediate exerciser. The Sizzler video has done wonders for my energy level along with reshaping my body. She is intense and if you follow her curriculum and maintain a healthy diet as suggested, you WILL see results in a few days and ultimately in weeks to come.

Instructor Comments:
Denise Austin is a very upbeat instructor. Yes, she has the "cheerleading" attitude, but how else can you stay motivated after a long days work? I do not understand what other people expect from an instructor. They are there to also help keep you motivated at least 3 - 4 times per week!

Terri Dwyer


Great workout. I was sweating in no time but I did'nt enjoy myself. I wasn't having fun. It felt to much like work. I would like to see Denise make a 60 minute aerobic workout with "real people" not wearing matching clothes in a "real setting" not on stage props. She might be amazed at the audience she would capture.

Instructor Comments:
Denise is a great motivator! But I believe she would be a greater one if she interacted with the participants in her videos. You know, like laughing and really enjoying the workout.

Karen Mason


I really like this video. It is a 48- minute tape broken down into a 5 minute warm-up...31 minutes of training broken down into 3 1/2 minutes of aerobics followed by 1 1/2 minute intervals of muscle training...8 minutes of exercises to firm the tummy (these ab exercises are great!!), buns and thighs...and a 4 minute stretch/cool down. The set is very pretty...somewhere in Mexico I believe. Like I said I loved this tape and would recommend it to intermediate exercisers.

Instructor Comments:
I think Denise is great. Although I admit she is not the best at cueing, I think she is very motivational and she is in great shape.

nicky r


I really enjoy doing Sizzler. I am an intermediate exerciser, and this is just what I need. I can always pull it out when I don't feel like doing The Firm or Cathe. The scenery is beautiful, and her constant "you can do it" always makes me smile. And, I am always in the high end of my target heart rate. There is a great ab section at the end.

Instructor Comments:
Denise is as bubbly as ever, but I like that in an instructor. She is there to motivate me. I don't get motivation from super serious instructors. Denise makes me feel like I really can do it.



I have used this video several times in the past but feel comfortable in reviewing it now since I did it this morning. I will be reviewing this in the good news, bad news format.

Ms. Austins' workout here is a dance-style aerobic workout peppered with muscle-sculpting intervals with an ab section and cooldown. The approximate running time is 50 minutes.

First the bad. The sound on this particular video is very fuzzy and it is difficult to hear the music track. Secondly the leg work and squats, although thorough, will have most seasoned exercisers looking for heavy dumbbells and ankle weights for more effective results. Last but not least, Ms. Austin, as usual, miscues or cues late during some segments

Now the good. Love the music (what I can hear at least) in this video. Sizzler has dance tracks like 'It's Raining Men' and 'Everlasting Love'. Also a very nice surprise is the fact that I always work up a really good sweat with this circuit style session using 5 lb dumbbells for the upper body work, 10 lb dumbbells for the lower. The ab work is actually pretty challenging in this video as well. Ms. Austin uses several sets to work the upper and lower abs, plus the obliques. The cooldown is nice too because you can sort of fantasize about being on whatever spectacular beach they are on.

Overall if you can get this video for a low price, every home exerciser can find something useful in it.

Instructor Comments:
What can I say? You either love her or hate her!!!

Sydney Haughton


This video is about 45 minutes long, maybe a little more. I like how she does aerobics for about 3 1/2 minutes then goes into standing toning for 1 1/2 minutes. She repeats this about 4-5 times then does some standing legs then some TOUGH abs...I think the abs section on this is super! I tried this as a beginner and couldnt' do all of them...she even 'tricks' you by stretching you out then going again! The aerobics portion in this are high impact in my opinion, but i'm 37 and my knees aren't like they used to be plus I have an extra 70 lbs bouncing around too...but I like doing something bouncy sometimes and this fits the bill.

My copy is Hit the Spot...a series she put out a while back. this is one of my favorite Denise tapes..the other favorite is stretch and flex and maybe yoga essentials.

Instructor Comments:
perky as always!

Susanna (smith938)


I do exercise videos every day, and am pretty fit (Firm and Karen Voight aerobic videos are my level). I do this video when I'm tired or pregnant (modified, less the abs) -- it's fairly low impact and Denise is such a nice person that she actually puts me in a good mood. It's not too long, and the intervals between aerobics and weights make it easy to get through.

Instructor Comments:
I actually like Denise Austin. As silly as she is, I get the impression that she is truly enthusiastic about helping people get fit. Her form is strange (how does she get her arms and legs so out of sync?), she has no center (I'm a dance instructor), and her timing (especially in her older videos) is pretty bad. However, her casual style of cueing and choreography are sometimes refreshing when compared with other scripted videos.

Elizabeth P.


I used to have this video when I was in the beg/int level and was one of the first that got me working out. For the beg/int level, it was harder than the others; feels more like a low intermediate IMO.

When I had accumulated too many videos, I let this one go and later missed it. A fellow VFr at the time, one of the rare guys, said I could have his because I missed that workout (if you're reading --thank you again out there!) I didn't do it right away however. Today, I put in the tape & discovered that all the songs that made the workout fun have been removed and dubbed over with muzak! I missed the songs:

"She works Hard for the Money", "Everlasting Love", and "It's Raining Men"

Doing the workout without them made it more of a chore for me. I see why some might not like the tape, if they can't experience it from the original format. I'm going to shop around for an older one and hope I can find it.

The aerobic portion of the workout covered shoulder presses with footwork, then biceps with lunges, squats with chest & back squeezes, then front shoulder raises and while doing footwork, then triceps without footwork to move onto the standing leg work, then floorwork after that. The buttocks work on the floor and abs is pretty good for the fitness level. I just hope I can find the old version of it!

Instructor Comments:
I like her Hit the Spot series because they are filmed outside, on the beach & not many other instructors opt for that.



I've been on, of all things, a Denise Austin kick lately. I'm advanced overall but due to busy schedules, hot weather and burnout I have been gravitating toward intermediate-level, get-it-done-in-45-minutes workouts. Denise's workouts, including Ultimate Fat Burner, Get Fit Fast, and Sizzler all do the job of getting me decent toning (for maintenance, not for muscle building) and decent cardio.

In Sizzler, she and a man and woman work out on a platform in a sunny cove by the beach--it clouds over at times. Five 3-minute aerobic routines consisting of grapevines, mambos, knee raises, even some cross country skis are interspersed with simple weight work like supersets of shoulder raises, tricep kickbacks, lunges with bicep curls, military press, and standing chest weight work. A brief leg segment of outer thigh leg lifts, inner thigh sweeps and squats are followed by a very competent ab workout of oblique side crunches, lower ab pelvic lifts, double crunches and a few others.

Overall this is an extremely serviceable cardio/weight circuit workout at intermediate level. It's perfect for days when I don't want to go all out either cardio-wise or weight-wise but don't want to take it totally easy, either.

Instructor Comments:
I used to think I couldn't stand Denise. But now I really like her. Yes, she has her oft-repeated mottos and statements, but it's all in a spirit of motivation. Her perkiness seems genuine--she really seems to enjoy what she's doing and that comes across and makes me enjoy exercising too, even as an advanced home exerciser already. Her cuing can be sometimes nonexistent but it does not matter with such simple routines. She's actually kind of endearing when she lets loose a spontaneous whoop during the moves.