This is Tae Bo

Billy Blanks
Year Released: 2010

Categories: Boxing/Kickboxing/Martial Arts

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Like the first reviewer, I had done a Tae Bo workout years ago and wasn't sold on it, although I liked Billy. I believe it was one of the "Live" workouts because the set was cluttered with people and I found it a bit distracting and hard to follow. My bigger issue was the counting and number of repetitions on each side was uneven. But so many people swear by Tae Bo and I liked the clips I had watched of this release so when I saw this on sale at Target, I snatched it up. I actually really like this workout. It is well organized and Billy is just incredibly charismatic on camera. He even messes up at one point and laughs it off and tells the camera that he still makes mistakes so it's ok if we do too. The workout is divided into rounds that are done in slow motion first so you can get the moves down although I still had moments at high speed where I felt like I was flailing. My arms especially burned at the end-I was amazed a workout without weights could be so wonderfully painful. There also is minimal high impact so it's easy to modify the workout if you need to. The clean dojo style set and small group of students was also easier on the eyes. For the negatives, there is a nice motivational speech by Billy at the end (peppered with commentary that his workout must be effective because others have ripped it off but somehow I found this charming instead of sour grapes) but no stretches which is mystifying. Secondly, ok. His daughter and the yelling. Their relationship seems very sweet but her constant yelling (including stepping over his speeches directed at the viewer by punctuating everything with "Yes sir!") was not enjoyable. Personally, I'd like to see her just go back to counting rather than fighting for camera time, which is how it came across to me.

Instructor Comments:
Motivational and positive. Keeps you going when you are tempted to drop.



I had bought the original Tae Bo set when it first came out of VHS, way back when. At the time I was pretty much beginner or low intermediate level. I know I had never done anything advanced. Still, I was disappointed with the original as being too easy, too many breaks in between segments, no challenge at all for me. I ended up giving the set away. I had never done another Tae Bo. I figured it just wasn't for me.

Fast forward several years, and I am seeing a lot of good reviews of This is Tae Bo on the VF forum. I saw it cheap in the store, so I took a chance on it, because I really do love kickboxing.

Wow, is all I can say! It is FANTASTIC! I am high intermediate now, and this is just great! Billy describes it as getting back to basics, with the original moves that made Tae Bo so popular in the beginning. But this is so much better than the original, in my opinion. It's an hour long, and there are 12 segments of drills. Billy describes it as a "12 round fight." There are no breaks in between the segments. It is well chaptered. The chapters start at the end of an exercise, right before you're about to start the next round. So it seems like it is chaptered in the middle of the segment, but you're actually coming in right at the end of one segment, as he immediately starts the new segment with no break in between.

This stays at a nice steady intermediate pace. Of course there are Billy's signature faster paced cardio blasts, but it is still at intermediate level the whole way through.

Here's something I never thought I'd say about a Tae Bo workout: Time just flew by, I worked up a good sweat, I had tons of fun, and I did it 2 days in a row - I never do DVD workouts 2 days in a row!

Another good thing is that this set looks like a dojo with wood floors. They got rid of the freaky red carpet. And Billy didn't wear distracting clothes this time, either.

My one and only negative comment: his daughter makes herself seen and HEARD, big time! She's obviously there to keep us on count and make sure we have even reps, but she stops counting to yell "HEY!" and "GO!" continuously throughout the workout. Kind of distracting. But I still enjoyed the workout.

Music is just there for the beat, nothing really noticeable or memorable.

Instructor Comments:
Typical Billy: encouraging, inspirational, motivating.