Step SurgeTonya Larson
Year Released: 2009
Categories: Circuit Training (cardio and weights) , Step Aerobics , Total Body Workouts
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This is one of my all-time favorite go-to workouts when I want to cover everything (cardio, weights, crosstraining, abs, great music) in just over an hour. It is one that is easy to learn but still has some interesting step combos to keep your attention. The weight sections that alternate with the step cardio are quite challenging if you go heavy enough (10 to 12 lbs or so). The music is a true 'pick-me up' motivator, so much fun! I just love this one.
Tonya is a very pleasant instructor that cues well. There is nothing annoying about her and she is easy to look at and follow.
Step Surge uses 6 step combinations along with 6 compound strength sections using weights (utilizing both upper and lower body exercises). You'll enhance your cardio conditioning along with toning your body. If you'd rather split your sessions, the dvd offers 5 premixes:
*Quick Surge 1: 36 minutes
warmup, combo & surges 1-3, cooldown, abs and stretch
*Quick Surge 2: 42 minutes
warmup, combo & surges 4-6, cooldown, abs and stretch
*Cardio Combo Mix: 51 Mix
warmup, all combo's no surges, cooldown, abs and stretch
*Strength Surge Mix: 33 minutes
warmup, all strength surges, cooldown, abs and stretch
*Bonus Cardio Quick Mix: 21 minutes
warmup, all combos no breakdown 2 times and cooldown
Tonya along with her 2 assistants, Cynthia and Ann, perform the workout. Cynthia modifies the workout perfectly throughout (for beginners or less advanced participants) and Ann takes the intensity up a notch. The warmup is actually the first combo of the workout and you'll run through it several times to warmup before progressing into a few dynamic stretches. Tonya made this CIA (Creative Instructors Aerobics) workout slightly more intricate than her own offering, which should please more advanced students. She used less breakdown to keep it more challenging however she teaches "add on" style which makes the learning process easier to follow. (if you still have difficulties, follow Cynthia--her transitions are so smooth you'll never miss a beat!) Following the warmup, you'll move into the first strength section which begins with pushups. You'll do several sets so choose the person whom you'd like to follow as each girl demonstrates a different level. Combo 2 of the step section is called the "skate combo". The next strength segment works the inner thighs and triceps. You'll perform a plie with an overhead triceps extension. Moving into combo 3 you'll begin with a box step on the bench and add in some step touches, runs and jacks. Biceps with leg extensions complete the next interval strength section. Combo 4 includes tap, tap, ball change with 4 knees. A few more intricate moves (turns away from the television for example) are shown in this segment. Squats and lunges really work the legs in the next strength interval. Combo 5 begins with a K step and moves into charleston and jabs. The next weight interval works rear delts and shoulders (light weight might be needed). The last combo begins on the floor with a grapevine, knee and hop. You'll add hamstring curls, turn steps, abductions--a very fun combination! In this workout, Tonya never takes it from the top until the very end. Instead you'll learn a combo (say #3) then you'll proceed to add it to just the preceeding combo, say putting #2 and #3 together. Once you've finished the 6th step combo you'll do your last weight interval which really works your balance. Once completed you'll perform all 6 step combos in a row. (good for all those who don't enjoy taking it from the top over and over) The cooldown is fun and dancy. The core work uses a small weight (optional) for added resistance. You'll begin with crunches and then move into a move that is similar to a pilates roll up. Tonya includes a few unique oblique exercises to finish up the core segment (and to hit all areas effectively). The final stretch uses the bench as a prop for some wonderful calf stretches. You'll gently stretch out the upper and lower body to conclude the workout.