Rockin' ModelsGrace Lazenby
Year Released: 2010
Categories: Abs/Core , Ballet/Barre, Yoga
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Equipment: body bar (for balance for standing barre sections, chair or barre could be used but may be awkward for some exercises that require lowering/lifting to ground w/ hands on bar), mat, small, squishy med ball (or playground ball would work) & hand (small) towel (floor-work).
Set: studio w/ brick walls, and white covers over windows w/ red lighting on it. There is some mix of colored lights that look night club-ish at times (different colors, flashing at different times), and there are split screens w/ another view of the background exercisers performing the workout & Grace w/ colored lighting on them, different outdoor locations in LA (beach, bay, famous streets & locations), scenes w/ the girls performing dance/burlesque, and the scenes are often superimposed over the shots of Grace & the background exercisers (beach, sky & scenes of downtown worked when they were super-imposed over the cast). So visually the workout is different from most out there.
Music: Each sequence (chapter) is set to a song by three artists. Grace mentions the three artists in the interview chapter, and in most cues before the next sequence starts, during the workout, and the song title & artist is displayed before each sequence. So at times it feels like overkill w/ Grace constantly hyping up the music. Yes, it’s fairly good, but not as mind-blowing or as inspiring to motivating & connecting w/ the exercises, in my opinion (but obviously was for her).
Cast: four background exercisers w/ Grace, and they are wearing denim leggings & grey or purple tank tops. For some of the exercise sequences (Burlesque), they are wearing top hats w/ small brims.
This is a 71 min. workout billed as “yoga-ballet w/ a dash of burlesque.” I have done this workout, twice, the first time I really did not like it. It felt like a mish- mosh of exercises from different focuses w/ too much going on in the environment (split screens, flashing lights), and it felt long (clock watching workout). The second time, I liked the floor sections (abs, lower body focus) & standing barre much more, still not a fan of her yoga or the cheesy warm-up. The segment choreography is easy to pick up, as Grace does demo them at a slower tempo first & there is lots of repetition in the sequences. The workout is well-chaptered, so I just plan to use the chapters I like for future RB workouts.
Grace’s form pointers were either late, where one was already on the next or third set of reps, or it was not very specific (sometimes good tips for breathing but not much for the body mechanics). It seems like she assumes people are familiar w/ her exercises or barre-type exercises, but some clarification would have been appropriate. For example, the standing arabesque, she never cues if one should have a straight or bent (attitude leg), and she has a an attitude leg while the others have straight. Also, in the pretzel-type exercise, she does not mention how high the leg or knee should lift off of the ground, should the foot be pointed or flexed and should the entire bent leg come off of floor or just the front or the back (someone new to barre would need to know this). Also this floor series, where one lies down on their side, there are kicks that have people in hip raise position, Grace is lifting her hips up, and the background exercisers are not (way later she says it is okay to lift the hips a bit, but she was lifting then a lot w/ bounce). And her yoga form is not very good, I’m not a yogi, and can tell. Her transitions from downward dog to warrior poses were not smooth, and her arms are bent often (when they should not be), head looks down or up when it should be neutral or straight ahead, and her hands are always looking like jazz hands in the air & on the floor (outstretched far from each other, when there seems to be no need for that).
I thought Grace would have better form & instruction (she does give some form good pointers), but she seems to be more focused on counting out reps (count less, provide clearer instruction) or winking (she does that a lot). I understand that the workout is supposed to be cheeky & fun, but it often came across as cheesy. I thought that the barre sections could have been more varied (different exercises, rep numbers), the clips of burlesque that the cast was performing (for fun) could have incorporated into the workout, as I thought the burlesque exercises w/ the body bar were not very fun at all. Modifications (beginner & advanced) were cued/demoed for some sections (yoga & core training), but not for many exercises.
Chapters: Interview, workout, Artists (music), Rockin’ Models.
Interview (7 min.) w/ Grace & Elle Rasco (one of the background exercisers).
Artists: information page for each: Matt Goss, Greg Glasweell & Cary Brothers w/ sample of song/s, video/s & playlists.
Workout (min.): 19 chapters, Chaptered by song & focus of exercise
Rockin’ Models: names & pictures of Grace & background exercisers.
Workout breakdown (by chapter)
Child’s pose> knees, shins, feet flat on floor, lift upper body up w/ alternating arms & hip shakes to side (4 counts, 2 touch hips, 2 reach overhead)> reverse motion w/ arms (touch hips, lean back touch heels/ camel pose)> repeat 4 count arms & hip shakes> 2 count hip shakes w/ arm touches to hip, then 2 counts place hands on floor (body is modified child’s pose, butt is not on heels)> repeat entire sequence, faster pace, multiple times> child’s pose> downward dog> alternating knee bends> straddle mat (step out to plie position, walk hands back to meet body), place hands on hip> transition to upright position w/ shoulder rolls (back)> overhead arms (single arm) w/ releve (elevate heels), then lower into plie & place hands on floor, repeat multiple times, faster pace> same movement w/ arms w/ plie turning into alternating side lunges> releve w/ overhead arms into plie (arms cross on floor)> overhead arms, then lower to forward bend.
Down dog> walk feet to hands>inhale to standing upward forward fold/bend (tips of fingers almost touching floor, flat back), then lower palms to floor for standing forward fold (back rounds)> overhead arms into standing position, hands into namaste, head turns> overhead arms, fold over into standing forward fold/bend> inhale to rise/standing upward forward fold/bend (lift body up a bit, back is flat, hands off of floor, head neutral position)> jump or step into plank position> chaturanga>up dog> down dog> jump or step feet next to hands> inhale rise, then exhale fall to floor> overhead arms to namaste, repeat sequence multiple times.
Warrior 1> step into plank position> chaturanga> up dog>down dog> repeat sequence for other side> entire sequence again & add Warrior 2> “Float” add back arm reach forward/upper body follows, return to Warrior 2> Side angle> Warrior 2, then Reverse Warrior> Warrior 2>step or jump into plank position> repeat sequence on other side (after last plank> down dog).
Down dog> crescent pose (high lunge)> open arms to side, then to front, then overhead to namaste>crescent lunge twist> crescent pose, namaste arms> Warrior 2> Side angle> Warrior 2>Reverse Warrior> “Float” back arm reach forward/upper body follows,front arm taps floor (shoulder close to thigh),return to Reverse Warrior> plank position>chaturanga> down dog> repeat sequence on other side (after last plank> down dog).
Ballet Barre Burlesque: uses body bar
Start w/ feet in first position, bar held in front of body (arm’s length)> elevate heels, roll onto balls of feet w/ bent knees (demi plie position) then alternating hip shakes to side> isometric hold in plie, then straighten legs> basic plies (w/ elevated heels together)> iso-hold in plie, then hip shakes> “walk it down” bar (w/ hip shakes & arms changing position on bar, lower body into deep plie & reverse motion)> basic plies>repeat sequence twice (speed up tempo of walk it down to fast pace, one hand placed on top of bar, other placed on than hand w/ emphasis).
Step out to side> alternate heel lifts, keep heels elevated for hip shakes to side> (grand) plies w/ heels elevated> iso-hold in lowered position> hip shakes to side> lower heels, then more hip shakes> “walk it down” bar (back is flat, side lunge to lower down & reverse motion)> stretch (alternating side lunge w/ body upright).
Standing Ball: uses body bar & small (squishy) ball
Start in first position w/ heels elevated, ball placed between inner thighs & bar held in front of body> lower into plie position w/pelvic tuck, then plies> lower into plie position, the squeeze ball w/ inner thighs, lower a bit more for a fewer reps> repeat sequence> hip shakes (in lowered position)> “Take it down” (hip shakes to lower & return from plie position, one arm hold the hat & lifts it off, when body lowers)> plies> hip shakes> “Take it down”> plies.
Chair pose> forward bend (bent knees)> upward forward bend> step or jump into plank position> chaturanga> up dog> down dog> crescent pose>open arms to side, then to front, then overhead to namaste>crescent lunge twist> crescent pose> plank position>chaturanga> down dog> repeat sequence on other side.
Warrior 1, namaste arms (hands to heart)> Warrior 2> Side Angle> Warrior 2> Reverse Warrior> Float” back arm reach forward/upper body follows, front arm taps floor (shoulder close to thigh), return to Reverse Warrior> Side Angle> Warrior 2> step or jump into plank position> chaturanga> up dog> down dog> repeat sequence on other side.
Standing Ballet Barre: uses body bar
Start balancing on one leg, bar is held by same side hand> moving (straight) leg extension to the back, then side (Grace has parallel position of foot, others have turned out, in the leg extending)> alternate extended leg to the back (past the other leg) & return to side, free arm sweeps forward w/ back leg extension & to side w/ the side leg extension> faster pace> pulses in arabesque (Grace has bent leg, others have straight) w/ same side arm overhead> standing pigeon pose> repeat sequence on other side.
Start balancing on one leg, bar is held by same side hand> moving leg is turned out & bent w/ sole or toes of foot placed on knee of other leg, same side arm held out to side> leg extension, reverse motion> faster pace> iso-hold w/ leg extended, bring leg to front> stretch (very brief, one hand holds hat & head tilts down, stationary leg has bend in it, other is straight)> repeat sequence on other side (starts right away w/ fast pace, not as many reps completed as other side).
Start seated w/ bent knees, feet flat on floor, elbows on floor> place hands held on hamstrings, C-Curve in spine> small (range of motion) lifts w/ upper body (level 1)> level 2: bent elbows are held in front of body (palms face back)> level 3: hands clasped (prayer pose, still in front of body)> roll down w/ prayer arms & arms reach overhead at bottom of exercise, reverse motion/sit-up, iso-hold at top of exercise> faster pace> arm pattern changes (arms open to lat raise position at bottom of exercise, scoop forward to bent elbows in front of body)> iso-hold in C-curve w/ prayer arms> seated hamstring stretch.
Core Training: uses small towel
Start seated w/ bent knees (knees & feet held together), feet flat on floor> place towel behind head & hold (elbows bent, towel supports the head), lower to floor, shoulders stay off floor> small lifts w/ upper body> iso-hold, then lower arms & head to floor for a quick rest> bring knees up to chest, lift shoulders & head back up to position for iso-hold, then extend straight legs in air> tap toes, fast pulses> lower head & shoulders to ground & pull knees to chest for quick rest.
Teaser: start supine on floor w/ bent knees, feet flat on floor, arms overhead> roll up w/ arms scooping forward while pulling knees to chest (upright position), hands behind knees, iso-hold> straighten legs, iso-hold> arms extend straight (same line as legs), iso-hold> advanced: roll down w/ upper body & arms & reverse motion, others: iso-hold> lower legs into seated hamstring stretch.
Core Training: uses small towel
Rows: Start seated w/ straight legs in front of body (pointed feet), towel held in hands w/ straight arms (extended in front of body)> C-curve spine, alternating row to each side, then swoop forward w/ arms (upper body over legs, towels reaches for feet), then lean back into C-curve spine w/ bent arms so towel is in front of chest> faster pace.
Seated attitude (pretzel, bent legs one in front other in back), body leans to side (supported by bent arm), back leg lifts (knee initiates movement), fast pulses w/ same side arm extended overhead (moves down w/ leg lift)> iso-hold> seated spinal twist stretch> repeat sequence on other side.
Waltz: Lie supine w/ bent legs, hips raised off of floor, arms to side of body, balls of feet on floor> alternate kicking leg in air, lowers partially w/ turn out (bent knee, in line w/ other knee), then straighten leg to extend up (kick) lower to floor> faster pace (Grace has hips lifting up & down w/ kicks, others do not)> perform sequence on one side (no alternating), both sides> single reps (cues to add more hips to movement, which she was already doing)> perform entire sequence again (starting w/ all reps on one side)> stretch (pull knees into chest, hold w/ arms).
Lie on side of body (bottom leg & arm bent and on floor), top leg is bent & top hand is resting on hamstring (close to knee)> leg extends straight & reverses motion, fast pulses> iso-hold w/ straight leg, then lower to floor (90 degrees), bend & stack on top of bottom leg> Clams (top bent leg lift)> lower part of top leg opens (not in line w/ upper leg, 45 degrees), pointed foot, leg lifts> top leg moves to cross in front of body, leg lifts (knee taps floor, leg angles so foot is higher, not level w/ knee)> same position but leg lifts higher (increased range of motion)> bottom leg straightens, more leg lifts w/ higher lift> alternate tapping (top leg) knee to floor w/ turn out & sole of foot/toes tapping the stationary, straight leg> add leg extension & lower to meet other leg, after toe tap to stationary leg> stretch (bring working leg/bent into body, then seated spinal twist).
Outer Thigh: repeat other side (w/ a different song)
Lie on side of body w/ straight legs stacked & bottom arm bent (supports head), top arm is in front of body> turn out top leg, bent knee & tap toe to bottom leg, kick (extend straight leg), lower leg to floor (in front of body) & tap floor once w/ foot, tap back to starting position (stacked legs)> faster pace> leg circle forward, foot taps in starting position, then in front> quick stretch (bring top leg knee into body), then shift body to move to other side> repeat sequence on other side.
Roll onto back, bring knees to chest> arms out to side, extend legs straight, then leg circles (legs open to sides in circular motion, move down & close back to starting position), reverse direction> stretch (pull knees to chest).
From last position, roll upper body down to floor (keep knees bent)> extend front arm out to side (on floor), then other, then extend straight legs in air> open legs to side, reverse motion, bend knees> perform leg sequence at faster pace> pull knees into chest, then roll up to upright position, hands behind hamstrings (close to knees)> alternate extend lower legs (kicks)> extend both legs> iso-hold w/ legs, lower upper body to floor, then bend knees> repeat entire sequence (starting from arm extensions)> but legs stay straight, extended in air, then arms open to sides, then legs open to sides, close, lower legs to floor (bent knees, legs turned out, soles of feet together, hands on abs)
From last position, hold, then roll to side, stack knees on each other & sit up> hip stretch (seated, shin of one leg is held between crook of elbows & leg is pulled to chest> cross ankle over other leg’s inner thigh for half lotus pose, hinge at hips, bent arms rest on floor (in front of body> repeat on other side> sit up w/ palms up, resting by knees (gyan mudra, palms up).
Grace seems genuinely pleasant & knowledgable, but this workout could have been better if she had focused more on providing more form pointers for the core exercises, then on winking, hyping up the music or placing snazzy visuals in the workout.