Jazzercise: Dance HiitShanna Missett Nelson
Year Released: 2013
Categories: Floor Aerobics/Hi-Lo/Dance , Total Body Workouts
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Full disclosure: I received a free review copy of this workout.
I will start with my conclusions first and I have two:
1. This workout is not what it says it is. Granted, I did a low-impact version, but, even if you include the skips and hops and other high-impact moves, it's not a HIIT workout. High intensity interval training (HIIT) is a type of cardio training in which you alternate short, very high intensity intervals with longer, slower intervals to recover. This workout just doesn't fit that definition, so, if you want a true hiit workout, this workout isn't for you.
2. Who cares? What a fun workout! The music is great! The exercisers leading the workout are engaging and look like they are having a blast! The moves are fun! For me, it's a keeper. I just won't pull it out when I want a true HIIT workout.
OK. What led me to those conclusions? Here are the details:
This workout alternates cardio sections with strength sections. In each case, the section lasts the entire length of a song. At the end, the exercisers hit a "ta da" pose (ala old Firm workouts, but not quite as dramatic) and then move onto the next song and section. The cardio sections are comprised of dance routines, but are fairly simple moves that I would describe as "dancey" rather than true dance. The strength sections require one band or one set of weights. All of the exercisers leading the workout use the band except for one modifier who uses weights.
The cardio sections are high energy and include some high-impact moves like hops, jogging, skipping, etc. along with twists, grapevines, hip moves. When it's all put together, it has a dancey vibe. The strength segments focuses more on lower-body moves, although there are a few upper-body moves as well. When there are both, the moves are compound. Even the strength segments have a dancey vibe with series of moves that you repeat to the beat of the music.
The music is GREAT and it really drives the workout. If you want to see the list and/or listen to clips of the music, you can find it here - http://www.amazon.com/Dance-Jazzercise-Power-Music-Workout/dp/B00E0FKK2Y. I'm an old fogey when it comes to popular music, so I didn't recognize much of it, but felt that the music had been well picked to match the moves and the flow of the exercises.
This DVD was filmed at the Jazzercise Fitness Fiesta convention in La Quinta, Calif.near Palm Springs and it supposedly features a live audience of approximately 1,000 instructors and customers. (I have no reason to disbelieve it; it was just hard to get the sense that there were that many exercisers there for me.) So, there is a stage up front with the lead exercisers on it in front of this mob of exercisers. Most of the time, the lead exercisers are the focus of the camera with the participants in the dark area in front of them. The workout is led by Shanna Missett Nelson and she is flanked by two exercisers on each side of her. I thought the exercisers were good - the exhibited good energy, they were in synch with the moves, and they seemed to enjoy the workout. I thought that Shanna was in her element in this workout; she did a good job of leading it.
In the strength segments, the exerciser on the far left side of the stage was the modifier using weights. The only problem is that they often will show Shanna and one exerciser on each side of her. So, the modifier is off the screen. Why do DVD producers do that, put the modifier off to the side so they aren't on the screen sometimes. Personally, it didn't impact me because I used a band, but if you use weights, it could be irritating.
As far as the cardio sections go, there was no modifier. Shanna mentioned and demonstrated lower-impact versions of higher-impact moves in each section. Sometimes, those tips came quickly and other times we were fairly far into the segment.
Once in awhile, the camera would turn around and focus on some participants rather than the exercisers at the front. Because they would then be pointing in the opposite direction, I would feel like I was on the wrong side because those participants would be on the opposite side from the lead exercisers. Then, the camera would swing back around to focus on the stage and I would be back on the "right" side.
The DVD menu includes the following options: Dance HIIT Full Workout (approximately 45-min.), Dance HIIT Pure Cardio, Dance HiiT Pure Strength, and Dance HIIT Express (about 18 minutes). The full workout and the cardio workout have the warm up; the other two don't.
As I said above, I enjoyed this workout. It is an intermediate level workout and that's the level I am at right now. It is a well-planned workout with great music and has the types of moves I enjoy - well, I enjoy my lower-impact modifications.
She is really good in this workout. She is encouraging and descriptive and fun.