Barry's BootcampBarry Jay
Year Released: 2006
Categories: Strength Training (Total Body) , Treadmill/Elliptical/Running/Stairs
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This is a five-workout set; it is no longer available retail, but is plentiful on ebay and is a pretty good buy. Each dvd has a 30-40 minute strength workout, a 20-minute treadmill workout (I ignored these as I do not own a treadmill) and a high-intensity floor cardio option. I only sampled two of these. One was very similar to Plyo X, and one was jump=rope based. Another involved a step, and I did not try it.
The strength workouts were primarily what interested me about this set. They all follow the same format, a series of exercises done for circuits of about a minute each. It's slightly less polished a production than Barry's newer infomercial kit, no flashy countdown timer or anything like that. Also, other people are sometimes working out on the background treadmills and such, and the lighting isn't always fabulous.
I have some quibbles with the exact distribution of work. Shoulders and Chest is forty minutes long, and I have zero interest on devoting that much time to those two body parts, especially since the arms routine already works those areas with many push-ups. But with that aside, the routines I tried were good. The lower body routine was thorough, and with only one set per move, the time went by quickly. Arms & Abs was really mostly an upper body routine (abs got about three exercises) and was tough! Lots of push-ups, which works for me.
Barry does not lead every routine, which was a disappointment. And I will not regularly do all five workouts. But I got these inexpensively enough that I am happy with the value I will be getting for the workouts I intend to do.
I like Barry. His drill sergeant style might not be for everyone, but he cracks me up and produces a good workout
I find the set ill conceived, and dangerous
when used as prescribed --a recipe for joint
and back injuries. The sequencing doesn't
make sense and the movements - as
described and demonstrated, are unsafe.
I have nothing against hard training - but I want to work intelligently, so I don't wind up with back, hip, shoulder and knee problems. I've suffered some ill effects from gym classes already (and frankly, bad yoga instruction) and don't want to exacerbate it - I'm sorry I didn't recognize the warning signs earlier.
The instructors talk safety - but they don't do what's necessary to acheive it. The *entire* non-treadmill cardio section is a ballistic disaster. Even with major modifications, I found myself having lower back discomfort - and that was enough to tell me to back off from this set.
I like the format - and I love the music-off option. I'm fine with the set, and Barry, himself, has some charisma. But beyond that the choice of movements, and instruction, and demonstrated form, is a throwback to early 80s material (lets jump up and down on one foot, really high) that was abandoned for good reason. I think Tony Horton and Cathe are both much safer - to make the obvious comparisons.
There are 5 discs in this set that include separate weights and cardio workout sections; each DVD goes straight to the menu, which is chaptered into: weights, cardio and treadmill, with sub-chapters: weights chapter select and audio track select (instructions with or without music). Full Body DVD is the only DVD that doesn't include cardio options.
These DVDs were created to bring Barry's bootcamp workout experiences to the home exercisers. Barry has fitness studios in L.A., where these bootcamp workouts are taught.
Even though the initial description of Barry's Bootcamp DVD set on Barrysbootcamp.com were "the workouts are filmed in a sexy format, fast-paced exciting music video style", these are not sexy bootcamp workouts (no cleavage shots/skin flashes; eveyone wears a black Barry's Bootcamp t-shirt/tank top or cami tank top with pants). There aren't cutesy background exercisers or cute remarks made by instructors. I like all the instructors (especially Barry!) ;they aren't dry or obnoxious, and I found them to be motivating.
There's no mugging for the camera--the class participants are all working out hard and even though they are not always in sync, they are working out to their individual potential, strength-wise and endurance-wise. Except for the times when the class counts out loud (usually at the instructor's request), the class isn't audible. Like in a real gym class, some people had better form than others and some people were stronger/faster than others. This helped make the workouts seem more "real" than rehearsed/scripted. It was somewhat comforting to see that not everyone was doing "perfect" pushups, etc. and it felt okay to struggle alongside them. I modified as needed (ie. step height in Nadia's Butt & Legs DVD).
The music isn't as good as it is in the infomercial clip, but I love it! Yes, the music volume fluctuates during the workouts, but it's usually due to the instructor giving the main portion of the instructions--it's softer then and it usually gets louder afterwards, even though the instructor is counting reps, etc.
The workouts are presented in wide-screen format and the production quality isn't the best or the worst; the colors seem a little bland and washed out, to me. Production could stand to be clearer/crisper, too. The setting is a corner of the gym, next to a row of treadmills with runners on them and the class is crowded together.
Most of the exercises in the workouts aren't fancy or creative, but they're tried-and-true. Equipment needed are: step bench (a flat weight bench can be substituted, in most instances), various weighted dumbbells and towel/mat for cushioning.
The exercises in the "weights" section in this set are as follows:
Arms & Abs with Barry: approx. 30 min.
-Pushups & skullcrushers
-Bicep & tricep supersets
-Bicep curls with static hold
-Abs with weights
-Tricep push backs
Butt & Legs with Nadia: approx. 36 min.
-Power squats & jacks
Chest & Abs with Rich: approx. 40 min.
-Raised pushups (one arm pushups)
-Ab kicks & bicycles
-Chest press & weighted abs
-Chest flys & abs
-One-arm chest press & crunches
-Slow chest press & bicycle
Shoulders & Back with Joey: approx. 46 min.
-Lateral & front raises
-Upward rows & elbow raises
-Core on the floor
-Cuban press & dumbbell cross
Full Body with Barry: approx. 44 min.
-Jumping jacks & toe taps
-Pushups & planks
-Flunges & squats
-Pushups & mountain climbers
-Abs on bench
-Core on floor
I love this set; great workouts! I bought it mostly for the strength training components. I steady state run for cardio and admit that I haven't used the cardio portions of the set. I love that the workouts are straightforward and that there's no soliticing on the DVDs about how great the workouts are or how much you're just gonna love them.
When actually exercising to these DVDs, I hardly noticed the fluctuation in music volume and that the class participants were not always in sync.
Barry Jay is the creator of Barry's Bootcamp; he's loud, brash and motivating! He's relentless and he has a "go, go, go...push, push, push" attitude. I just love him!
I like all of the instructors; I found them to be motivating. Nadia's repeated verbal cueing of "left...right...left...right" might be annoying to some, but it didn't bother me.