Timesaver Shaper Ball Workout

Kathy Smith
Year Released: 2000

Categories: Balance/Medicine/Mini/Stability Ball

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NOTE: You will find more reviews of this workout if you search under "Shaper Ball Workout" (without the "Timesaver").

I had previously reviewed this workout, and my former review is below. However, I wanted to mention that I recently reacquired this workout when I obtaining Kathy Smith's "Body Boomers" DVD, which is all re-releases. It's a decent workout that mainly focuses on the abs, back, and lower body, although it is somewhat slow-moving. The total time for this routine is 29 minutes.

OLD REVIEW (2005):
I just got a stability ball, and this was one of the first workouts I tried. Kathy and her assistant, Michael, begin with a 6 1/2 minute warm-up: moving with the ball held in your hands, stretching using the ball, and sitting on the ball both to open your hips and to get used to balancing. Next comes a 7-minute abs segment which includes a total of 4 exercises: the first three work your upper abs, lower abs, and obliques respectively while seated on the ball, and the final works the side muscles. The following segment consists of a series of back extensions, the first performed face up on the ball and the last last two performed face down; this section is 6 minutes long. The final section, which I clocked at 9 1/2 minutes, focuses on the lower body. I found the hamstring work to be particularly tough as well as the three sets of wall squats (the last two are performed on one leg). The workout ends with a single stretch, no cool-down, for a total of 29 minutes.

There are two things that I really liked about this video: 1) Kathy shows three different levels of modifications for every exercise, so you can make each exercise easier or more challenging, and 2) brief stretches are included between many of the exercises, and these feel so good on the ball. On the negative side, I did not feel that this workout was very intense, as I would have preferred if Kathy had spent less time instructing and more time actually performing the movements. Furthermore, I would have liked to have seen some upper body work included in the routine. Overall, however, this was a decent introduction to ball work and would be good for those who want to build back and lower body strength.

Instructor Comments:
I like and respect Kathy Smith, although I don't always click with her teaching style. She was fine here--it was her background exerciser that I could have done without. :p

Beth C (aka toaster)