Turbo Jam: 20 Minute Jam

Chalene Johnson
Year Released: 2005

Categories: Boxing/Kickboxing/Martial Arts

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This is a good one to have on hand for me.

With 2 kids under 8, and a full time job out of the house, workout time is hard-won.

Sometimes I am able to find 20 minutes at the start of the day, or while the kids are watching tv - where I can just go all out, even if a longer workout has to wait until my husband gets home.

The workout itself is not as fun as either of the cardio parties.

The song "Party train" is used, which is a old favorite of mine.

Instructor Comments:
See my other reviews



This is great. I didn't think I could break a sweat in 20 minutes but I did. I love the music and the moves. I don't think I'd buy this as an individual. I bought the whole set and I am very glad I did. I know more advanced exercisers are adding this to the cardio parties for a hour long workout with 2 turbos. That's my goal!!

Instructor Comments:
I love Chalene! She's sort of goofy and very funny. She doesn't cue all the way through but I didn't have a problem with that as by the time she stopped I knew what I was doing. She has great pointers to form. I think she talks just enough (i don't like instructors that talk the whole way through)



This is one of the original Turbo Jam workouts produced by Beachbody with Chalene Johnson. There are five workouts on a 2-DVD set in a regular DVD plastic container. This workout clocks in at about 19:30 minutes and has a time counter at the bottom (like most or all Beachbody workouts) and in the time bar it introduces the next set of moves. I had skimmed over “Learn and Burn” but didn’t actually do the moves, but proceeded with 20 Minute Jam with the hopes of keeping up, and I did! I have gotten better with basic choreography, for instance Firm-style step aerobics and floor aerobics is more intuitive to me now. I have done some other kickboxing workouts including a little Tae Bo and 10 Minute Solution Knockout Body, but not a significant amount. I was very pleased I was able to keep up with Chalene, and it was just really fun!

Chalene leads several exercisers (around 10 people) and two of them provide beginner or low impact modifications (as there is some hopping involved). The set is wide and open and some of the exercisers in the back are on raised platforms so everybody is easily visible. The set felt professional and uncluttered to me. There was one “Turbo” section of about 1.5 minutes long in which you do some moves extra fast to (I assume) spike the heart rate. This section was signified by a darker section in the timer bar and “alarms” that go off (fun). I thought the moves (mostly punch variations but also some kicks mid-workout) repeated enough but were not repetitive feeling. I personally used 1# wrist weights to heighten the intensity of the workout, although nobody in the workout used this extra resistance. I did the high impact (primarily jump roping) and my heart rate really got up there in the 20 minutes! I did it after some arm work and waist work so I was somewhat preexhausted in those muscle groups which may have helped with the intensity for me.

The music is definitely FUN – I think that’s the main selling point of the Turbo Jams (and a great selling point!) I was a little apprehensive to try these because I heard they were really quick moving, and they are (well this is the first I have tried – I was very inspired with all the current Turbo Fire craze!) but like I said I was delighted to see I could keep up with her fine, again because the moves are repeated several times on each side. Even some of the trickier moves I was able to pick up in two or three reps, and I am not strong with choreography. Very well done! I avidly look forward to doing some of the other workouts in the series. High production quality and super fun music. Grade A!

Instructor Comments:
My only previous experiences with Chalene were from CLX (of which I did the entire rotation), and it was interesting to see her in this more laid back and fun setting. She’s a little younger and less serious, but she’s still an excellent cuer, motivating, and encouraging. I would highly recommend her as an instructor, for both strength-oriented workouts like CLX and aerobic-oriented workouts like Turbo Jam. She’s both encouraging and friendly but not too chatty or otherwise annoying (whooping, etc.)

Emily B.


When I was first starting out with kickboxing, I enjoyed Turbo Jam Cardio Party, but as I became more experienced, I moved on to other things. However, I recently had the opportunity to re-acquire a used copy of the Turbo Jam set and decided to go for it. I definitely liked the idea of the Turbo Cardio 20 Minute Workout, as I'm often adding on cardio to my other fitness activities.

As usual, instructor Chalene Johnson is teaching in front of a large class, with Mindy and Anna-Rita showing modifications. The 3-minute Warm-Up segment is VERY similar to Turbo Jam Cardio Party--i.e., Johnson introduces the punch and cross punches, plus she does a dynamic stretch combo which includes speedbags, arm circles, and a hamstring stretch. The first combination segment is 3.5 minutes. Although the combos are fun, I found Johnson's cuing to be quite poor here, especially where she includes some moves not covered in the Learn & Burn DVD. The sequence starts with front-corner uppercut, front-corner hook, add a pump with jab, and then a high-low elbow. Johnson calls the next segment (4 minutes) the "party train." It starts with jab-cross-speedbags, then adds in a back kick-front knee.

Next is the "Turbo," a short (1.5 minute) higher energy, higher impact sequence (Mindy and Anna-Rita keep it low impact). The moves here include football drills, high jogs, and low blocks. For the 4-minute dance recovery, Johnson begins with uppercuts, moving into quick jab-crosses. She then adds a jab-knee-back kick, repeating the entire series on both sides. The 2-minute final stretch starts by going through some slow punches and then moves through a few quick stretches, including a hamstring stretches and side angle and triangle pose from yoga.

At first I was a bit disappointed in this routine, as it seemed SO similar to Cardio Party, yet with poor cuing. However, the combos are fun and different, and I loved the dance recovery music ("The Roof is on Fire"). So, in the end, I did find this to be a fun, enjoyable workout that I probably will do again when I am short on time.

Instructor Comments:
Chalene certainly has plenty of energy! I can take her in small doses, but she has a BIG personality that tends to get to me after awhile.

Beth C (aka toaster)