Perfectly Fit Series with Claudia SchifferKathy Kaehler
Year Released: 1995
Categories: Total Body Workouts
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This is another set I got my friend who didn't want to do exercise videos anymore. I have found the four videos to be well done (except the abs video. Can someone tell me what's up with that?), and I don't consider myself a super model video person. The settings are very attractive. I remember music but honestly can't remember what it was like. Guess that means standard "exercise elevator" stuff. Claudia primarily works out alone, occasionally Kathy is there like a training session, working with her, or demos the moves. This is good 'cause Claudia's form has something to be desired at times. ALso, she has no visible muscle tone. (This is only worth mentioning because Kathy comments "that she can really see her definition.") Claudia is friendly and offers nuggets of motivation from time to time. She is by far less annoying than Cher, she actually seems kind of quiet, you can tell by her face she's really working and trying through the work out. Her video is also safer than Cindy Carwford's, and she had the intelligence to let Kathy, a very professional instructor, lead the workout. This is a good series for beginners to intermediates who want to break down their isolation work with some tried and true routines. The instruction is good (could use more stretch at the end), the settings are pretty and Claudia seems very personable without being "hoot"y.
Kathy instructs this video very clearly through demos, voice overs and one-on-one sessions with Claudia. She is clear and professional.
So far I've done the Legs, Butt, and Abs videos. My favorite is the Legs. It starts out with a good warm-up that really gets my heart beating. Although this is strictly a strength video, I've noticed that my heart rate really gets up there during the intense parts of the workout, especially the standing work. The video begins with three sets each of four standing leg exercises -- lunges, squats, hamstring curls, and calf raises. Next is floor work. I've only done this workout for a few weeks and my legs absolutely burn during the exercises, especially the floor work. I haven't yet used ankle weights, because I can't even do all the reps without them! I think overall this is a great video for intermediate (or even beginner) exercisers. It's got great scenery and is entertaining. I also like the music.
As for the other two workouts, I generally like the Butt workout, but have grown tired of the abs workout. It seems just too long and not effective enough at targeting the right muscles. By the end of the workout, my neck hurts more than my abs. And this doesn't happen with other videos I've done.
Claudia is very likeable and natural in her instruction. She is less like a "trainer" and more like a buddy working out with you. The real creator of the series is Kathy and she offers good instruction (sometimes too much at times) and often appears in a background window to demonstrate proper form.
A frustrating video series.
There are too many pauses throughout the tape for instruction and form, which is nice the first couple of time you use it, but after you've learned the technique you wish they had put all the instruction at the beginning of the tape or during the workout as is done with other videos. All of those interrruptions get really annoying after a while.
Also in order to get a total body workout, you have to do all 4 tapes! (At 14.99 each or 59.96 for all, this makes this workout one of the most expensive ever produced.) You will also have to use the warm up from the 1st tape and then fast forward through it on the 2nd, 3rd and 4th tapes. You waste a lot of valuable exercise time fooling with the VCR on this one.
There is sooo much filler on these tapes, that they are not a good value.
The scenery and music are very nice.
Thorough and clear instruction.
A decent ab workout lasting 19 minutes with Kathy Kaehler giving instruction to Claudia Schiffer. It works every part of the abs with lots of repetition and continuous counting by Kathy. If you can get past the monotony of the counting and keep going when you see the seconds on the screen, it is pretty good. There is a power segment at the end that just keeps going with three sets of different moves. I felt I got a good ab workout with this tape, and if you like basic moves, it's an excellent workout.
The scenery is fabulous, the editing amazine- these are great-looking videos, as supermodel productions generally are. Unlike the abominable Cindy Crawford video, Claudia Schiffer's exercise routines are easy to perform and don't strain your back or other joints, though they are certainly effective. Claudia has Kathy Kaehler to thank for this. These are purely strength tapes, with no aerobics portions. You need weights for the 'Arms' tape, and you can use ankle weights for 'Legs'.
I really like all these videos with the exception of 'Perfectly Fit Abs'. It is just too long, and I feel I get more out of my 6-9 minute Frim 5-day ab workouts than I do out of this marathon session. Claudia would have been better providing 2-3 shorter ab routines on this tape.
The 'Arms' tape is my favourite. There is a lot of tricep work with bent-arm chair dips, two different kinds of tricep extensions, and four sets of push ups. I'm a little peeved at the way Claud goes a bit too fast with some of the sets, especially bicep curls. I've been using it about three times a week for three months and I'm (just!) starting to get Angela Basset-arms. Just gotta lose that fat over the top with cardio... Claud's arms aren't really very inspirational or aspirational- at one point during triceps extensions Kathy tells her "That looks great, I can really see you definition" and this never fails to provide me with a laugh. There is no advice given on what size weights to use for beginners, I started with piddling 2 pounders because I was such a weakling when I started, and I really felt it. I'm now up to using 5 pounders.
'Buns' incorporates lunges and donkey kicks, and pelvic tilts. At first the pelvic tilts really got my buns a-burnin' but as I gained strength this stopped, but then I took Kath and Claud's advice and added weights- I also did this for the donkey-kicks. I think my butt has lifted a bit (though how can I objectively quantify this? It FEELS higher, anyway), and it definitley feels much firmer.
'Legs' also has lunges, and then floorwork in the form of side leg-lifts. I could barely do these the first time I tried them- I had not done any strenth training in a long time. They stayed challenging for quite awhile, and I just added weights when they weren't anymore.
The stretching segments of these tapes are really too short- I usually go on with my own stretches after the segments finish, especially for the 'Buns' video. But this isn't really a complaint because, let's face it, for all they go on about how important it is to stretch thouroughly after working out, how many instructors actually do this in their videos. But I digress. All up, I give a thumbs-up to the Claudia Schiffer videos, with the exception of 'Abs'.
In all the tapes Claudia demonstrates the bulk of the moves, while Kathy Kaehler occasionally demostrates from or corrects Claudia's. Claudia's form is not always perfect, but at these times Kathy usually appears somewhere on screen for reference.
Kathy Kaehler is a competent instructor, although we don't see much of her in this 4-video series. There are four videos in this series: upper body, thighs, abs, and butt.
The tapes would be good for a beginner/intermediate or an advanced exerciser who wants a lighter workout. The upper body workout is fairly complete, although the back muscles are left out of the workout. The butt tape offers the usual fare of squats and lunges and floor work, which didn't seem terribly difficult, but I felt it the next day. The thighs tape is long and by far the most challenging, and it challenges the buttocks muscles slightly as well. The abs tape is rather long and disjointed. It seems to me that more work could be done in a ten-minute session.
I rented the Abs and Legs videos. Each time I rent, I watch the tape through once, then I do it later. About the videos... The setting is gorgeous: Prague rooftops, some place in the Caribbean. I like that sort of thing. It's very MTV. I have several problems with the two videos I did. The audio is annoying because sometimes you have three things going at once: the music, the counting, and the explanations of proper form. The BIG problem I had may actually be a plus for some. Kathy Kaehler has Claudia do the same thing over and over and over. The high reps were physically OK with me on the ab exercises because my stomach is in better shape than my legs, but there is very little variety, and it gets BORING. For example, after doing 16 leg lifts with your foot flexed, you'll do 16 pulses of the same leg lift, then you'll do 16 leg lifts with your leg flexed, then 16 alternating flexed foot and pointed foot. There's a fine line between going for the burn and utter boredom, and KK crosse it. I also had a terrible leg cramp in the middle and had to stop the tape, which has never happened to me before. In the ab tape, the same sort of things happen. At one point, KK's voice says, in it's sexy way, "You just did 180 crunches." So in general, I don't recommend these tapes. I think someone sais "more could be done in less time," and I agree. If you want the scenery, get that Karen Voigt tape with Elle McPherson in Hawaii. It's much, much better. I think these "Perfectly Fit" tapes are better for guys with crushes on Claudia!
Claudia Schiffer is obviously a "puppet instructor". She doesn't do any of the talking, but she does the moves pretty well. I've read on this site that she didn't work out before doing these videos, but she obviously made a real commitment to the project. She's nice scenery, but not especially motivating.
Kathy Kaehler is the real designer of the exercises. She's sort of off in the background, floating past every now and again, talking about form. She has this very sexy voice that almost puts me to sleep. When she's counting "1, 2, 3...", it's very hypnotic, but not at all motivating.