Element: Accelerated Pilates

Lisa Hubbard
Year Released: 2012

Categories: Pilates/Core Strength

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NOTE: I received a free review copy of this DVD from the distributor.

I was first introduced to instructor Lisa Hubbard through her Element Total Body Pilates With Mini Ball Kit. To my surprise, this quickly became one of my favorite Pilates DVDs, so when this new Element: Accelerated Pilates was released, I was once again interested in working out with Hubbard. In her short introduction on this DVD, Hubbard states that adding the resistance band increases the intensity and stimulus the moves performed on the Pilates apparatus; throughout the workout itself, she notes which particular pieces of apparatus are being mimicked by use of the band.

As with all the Element workouts, the setting is a beautiful flowered garden with the ocean in the background. Hubbard is instructing alone via voiceover, and she uses a purple band similar to the one included with the DVD. The Main Menu offers options to Play Pilates Accelerated Workout or Play 10-Minute Bonus Abs Workout; I have broken down each below.

Hubbard begins this routine standing, lifting the arms up and over her back for a shoulder stretch, then coming forward in a slight c-curve for a back stretch. Placing the band under one foot, she performs balance leg lifts to the side, leg circles, glute lifts, and small leg extensions; she then repeats this series to the other side. Coming down to the mat, Hubbard starts the abs section. Holding the band in her hands with the arms overhead, she curls up, pressing the knees into the band--first alternating knees, then double, then alternating with rotation. Placing the band around her feet, Hubbard then does the roll-up, adding on a triceps extension to the end. Next are two rowing moves, rowing with boxing and a rhomboid row. Continuing with the band under the feet, Hubbard comes back to lying for a supine leg press, and then with the band under one leg only, she performs a single leg press, bicycles, and leg circles before repeating on the other side. For the side-lying series, Hubbard includes front-back, up-down, and leg circles, all with the band under one foot. The final move is a back extension lying on the stomach, lifting the arms holding the band back and over the head. Hubbard concludes with a brief rest in child's pose.

BONUS ABS WORKOUT (10 minutes)
For this routine, Hubbard starts with the band under the feet for mini roll ups; she then adds an oblique twist to this move. Next comes a supine twist, holding the band in the hands. Continuing to hold the band, Hubbard presses her bent legs into the band for double leg stretch prep, reverse double leg lifts, single leg stretch, and single leg stretch with rotation. She then holds the band against the shins for the classic Pilates hundred move. Moving the band to underneath the legs, Hubbard concludes this workout with her version of the back stroke (this felt a bit awkward to me).

I was extremely impressed with Hubbard on this DVD! For the Accelerated routine in particular, she incorporates the band well, really using it to enhance the movements. Furthermore, her instruction moves at a moderate pace that is easy-to-follow but not too slow. My only complaint about this DVD had to do with the included band: it was a little on the thin side, and at times, it stuck to itself and bunched up, forcing me to pause in the middle of the workout.

Overall, I found this to be an excellent Pilates DVD that I think would be appropriate for advanced beginners and above; highly recommended!

Instructor Comments:
Now that this is my second Pilates workout with Lisa, I am really coming to like her! She cues very well plus has a very calm, soothing demeanor.

Beth C (aka toaster)


This dvd includes a 30 min standing & floor pilates routine that utlizes a stretchy band that is included with the dvd. It also contains a 10 minute bonus core workout. The workout is set overlooking the gorgeous Pacific Ocean and is done in voice over.

Standing exercises include: abductions, leg circles, glute lift & balance work. Floor work includes: single leg stretch, roll-up & tri extension, bicycle, leg circles, and a side lying series including leg circles & leg sweeps. The workout concludes with superman work using the band to incorporate upper back and child pose.

The bonus core workout includes: crunches, oblique crunches, knee drops, single leg stretch, back stroke, the 100, and bicycle.

I rate this a low intermediate pilates routine that is appropriate for most all exercisers by varying the tension on the band. Lisa does a fantastic job of emulating the pilates reformer and Cadillac and utilizes the band in all exercises. She is a very knowledgeable instructor and provides wonderful form pointers. I received this dvd to review.