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on December 11, 2009
Drenched and happy. That's me after doing Julianne Hough's Cardio Ballroom for the first time today. (I was lucky enough to get an advance copy.) What a wonderful and challenging workout...and what a wonderful and adorable instructor! Julianne's directions are clear, easy to understand, and she builds her routines easily, cleanly, logically and so quickly that, before you know it, you feel like you're doing the cha-cha, jive and paso doble on Dancing with the Stars with her. I've done ballroom and latin dancing as an amateur and definitely recommend that everyone - even dancers - start by taking the private lesson first, before trying out the full workout, to become familiar with the basic movements and steps. Then, the first time you do the full workout, don't try to copy her every move immediately -- learn it gradually: get the "footwork" down first, then add the arms and then the styling as you become more comfortable with the choreography. This is a workout that you'll get better at and have more fun with each time you do it. Great warm up and cool down too. Best of all, when you work out with Julianne, you'll sweat profusely and you'll have a ball, but you won't feel like you're exercising. You're dancing. And if you love to dance, this is the workout for you.
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on March 17, 2010
Julianne clams "What's great about this DVD is if you never danced, if you have a little experience they're easy dance moves that you can pick up .... anybody can do it." FALSE While I'm no professional I have taken a lesson or two. While I may lack in technique, I'm usually able to pick up moves (footwork) pretty easily. Not with this video. The problems with this video

1. Julianne is facing you so you are dancing to a mirror image. It would have been nice to have her break down the moves by following her footwork exactly. Matter of fact while teaching a move she says to always cross right over, yet in the video she was doing left over right?? Confusing

2. Too fast from the start. Most instructors start at a slow pace so you are comfortable with the moves before moving on to a faster tempo. I have trouble keeping up with the music because I don't have my footwork down yet.

3. Camera doesn't show the footwork enough. OK, it's bad enough I'm trying to follow a mirror image but what's worse it that the camera is constantly zooming in on Julianne's face. She is a beautiful girl, but it's her FEET I need to see to learn the dance! At least show a full body shot or something.

4. Julianne is poor at teaching you HOW to do the moves. Again, she is just too fast. Basically just showing you what to do, not how to do it. She may be able to teach those stars how to dance, but in this video she doesn't think of beginners. Slow it down girl! Show me step by step please.

I do believe that if I were able to learn the routine and keep up with her moves, this would be a fun and fantastic workout. Sadly, this video just makes it too hard to learn. I give it one star because it is NOT for beginners! Had it not been marketed for beginners, I would have given it an extra star or two, blaming myself for not being able to keep up.
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on December 17, 2009
I love Julianne Hough as a dancer to begin with, and especially her teaching style, so I would have bought this DVD regardless. After just trying it for the first time, I can honestly say I am exhausted. I have been a dancer since the age of 3, and this was a a challenging DVD at first. I love how you are constantly moving, but it is not a beginner DVD where you only learn steps like in the DTWS DVDs (those are great for beginners). You a learning a routine, which is more fun.

I would recommend this DVD to anyone who wants to dance away their weight. It really is a great workout!
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on December 16, 2009
If you are a Dancing with the Stars fan like me, and always wish after each show that you could dance like the stars, but don't have a partner to take lessons with -this video is just what you need! Julianne Hough is such a motivating instructor and wanting a body like hers will keep you dancing right along with her!

This video is challenging at first, especially if you haven't had professional dance lessons, so I would recommend taking Julianne's private dance lesson first (also on the DVD) before starting the routines. She breaks down the footwork, making it easier to learn and practice before putting all of the steps together. Once you move onto the routines, you will definitely feel your muscles working with all of the twists, turns, and flirty moves! This is a must have for any DWTS fan or for those who want to learn how to Latin or Ballroom dance in the comfort of their own home. Get ready to sweat and shake that booty - so fun!
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on January 7, 2010
I had never done any videos on my own, least of all dance videos, so I was a little hesitant at all. I also have zero formal dance experience. Also, I rarely comment on products I buy, even if I like them. Finally, while I am not large, I have not worked out regularly in awhile and was scared I would fail. Once this got started, however, I knew instantly that I was a fan and that I had to share it with others. In fact, my roommate, who was at first not interested in doing it stood around watching and doing it in her jeans until she could not stand it and changed into some workout clothes to join me--I ended up doing the video for 2 hours and didn't even realize it! Okay, to the video: Julianne is perky and adorable, like a sweet friend. She is encouraging, but not demeaning or pretentious, speaking to you like the adult you are, which I found to be very important. This helps because 1) you do not mind listening to her, and 2) I can see the longevity of the video because I won't get bored or annoyed at her telling me step-by-step each time. This has some disadvantages, I can imagine, if you absolutely must have counting and verrry slow step by step approach--I like to just get into the nitty gritty, so to speak. Even with the practice, it was a bit difficult to pick up, but I don't think it will take long, and is more fun and challenging this way. The three dances she teaches, the cha cha, jive and paso are a ton of fun, and the music is great. I was thinking after we got good at this video we could even change it up and turn on our own latin music later. BTW, the jive is a killer workout, and gives you great cardio! So the conclusion: 1) Julianne is a great easygoing instructor 2) the moves are challenging and potentially complicated for beginners, but because they are difficult to learn and pick up, the video has greater longevity 3) the dances are a workout and you will sweat a lot 4) the dances are so fun you won't even realize you're working out! If anyone fails to sweat or feel their body work doing this video, I do not believe they are really trying, doing the moves correctly or generally putting energy into it. I highly recommend this video. You will sweat, but you will have fun!
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VINE VOICEon January 6, 2010
Julianne Hough choreographed some amazing routines when she was on "Dancing with the Stars", and she hasn't stopped doing that for her fitness DVD. The routines are not only fun and cardio, but they are real routines, as well. The segments on the DVD are:

Warm Up-This pretty much tells you that the routine isn't going to be slow. The warm up features very fast plies to start with, and it continues on with some contractions, roll-downs, a cabbage patch dance step, and more. It lasts about 5 1/2 minutes.

Cha-Cha-This is a very Latin dance, and although it is my least favorite, it is still a great routine. It starts with a twisting step, then it goes to a syncopated step, next is a chest pumping step, and last is a hip roll and shimmy. All in all it is four 8-counts, and it lasts about 10 minutes.

Jive-This is the fastest and will really test your cardio ability. Julianne just jumps right in doing the first step slowly once, then picking it up to speed which is REALLY fast. The first step is full of kicks, next is a kick kick ball-change step, next is a jump forward with a clap, after that comes a chase forward, and last is the twist and hustle. It is, once again, four 8-counts, and it last about 12 minutes.

Paso Doble-This is a very powerful dance, and you need to keep the moves firm and not be flimsy. Once again, there are four 8-counts, and this is my favorite routine of them all. The routine starts with a cape step (no cape required, it is just arms), then it moves to a roll down and roll up, next is a popping step from side to side with the hips, and last is a step called "the kill" which requires you to jump out, jump in, turn around, and repeat. It's a lot of fun and really cardio. This lasts about 11 minutes.

Cool Down-Julianne relaxes you with some inhales, hip movements, roll downs, and a few stretches. She doesn't stretch all muscles, but she does stretch quite a few. It lasts about 5 1/2 minutes.

Bonus Dance Lesson-Julianne breaks down some (not all) of the moves from the dances. It didn't help me learn the steps faster, but it did help me improve my technique not only for this DVD but for all of my dancing in these styles.

There is also an interview and the credits on this DVD. Now, the moves aren't really broken down, so I don't really think that a beginner should try this. I recommend it more to intermediate/advanced exercisers who have some (even if it's just basic) background in dance. Let me warn you, Julianne doesn't count at all. She just says, basically, "Go!", and that's when you start the move. She also yells at the camera (not in an unfriendly way, she is VERY nice, motivating, and friendly, but she doesn't just talk to the camera, she yells) so you might find yourself turning the volume down a little bit. The songs are really nice, in my opinion. They aren't just these techno songs you hear in most workout videos, instead they are really nice and fit each dance style well. All in all, I recommend this DVD to anyone. Julianne does tell the viewer twice that they are a strong woman, but if men can just ignore this, they will like the DVD just as much. I think it is worth the money, and I highly recommend it.
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on January 20, 2010
If you are just starting out and wanting to learn a few steps and get a great, fun workout, this dvd is NOT the one for you. She goes so fast and doesn't do well in giving you instructions. There is a one on one part of the dvd where she goes over a few "basic" steps. The shots are in and out so, when you're trying to follow her, you get lost b/c they cut into her face or her flipping her hair that you lose your steps. I have taken dance lessons before so, some of the steps I knew but even then, I found it to be very hard to follow and not much of a work out.
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on January 15, 2010
I've been serious about getting fit for about 5 months now and have lost a lot of weight using both P90X and Turbo Jam. Saw Dance with Julianne in the store yesterday and picked it up thinking it might be a nice little fun thing to do on the days when I still need to work out, but don't really feel like it. I so heart Julianne on Dancing with Stars -- I was excited to get it if just for that reason.

HO-LY Crap.

I just finished it for the first time -- You could say I was at best marking the moves since I was learning the choreography for the first time, but I'm still soaked in sweat from head to toe and feeling the workout ALL OVER. AND it was fun!! You hear instructors always saying, "Do this workout, it's fun!" but I mean, come on... really? This really is!! I can see how the better you know the choreography, the more fun it would get, and I can't wait to try again tomorrow!

This thing is freaking awesome. I'm thinking Julianne could give Tony Horton a run for his money.
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on January 22, 2010
This is supposed to be an exercise video. If you know nothing about the dance moves, you buy this to learn and to exercise. The camera angles on this DVD are changed every 2-5 seconds, and 75% of the time they are shooting Julianne's face. How can you learn the moves if you're looking at her face? They shot this like it was a music video, not an exercise video.
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on April 29, 2010
I received this and two other dvds (DWTS Latin Cardio and Dance off the Pounds) a few days ago after ordering from Amazon. I love Julianne in DWTS and think she's an amazing dancer, so that was one of the reasons I bought this dvd. To be honest, I'm 20 years old and am what I like to call a casual intermittent exerciser. I do pilates workouts every once in a while and though I have some muscle tone, it's really not very much (I'm not like pudding, at least!). I'm also from Latin/Hispanic descent and so, you'd think dancing would come naturally but it doesn't. I DON'T DANCE. Seriously. So going in to this workout, I knew I'd have difficulty with the steps but I didn't think it would be THAT hard. Boy was I wrong! This dvd is a real workout. I mean, the warm-up alone makes you work up a sweat! The moves are difficult to learn, but there's a special segment called 'Dance lessons' where Julianne breaks down the moves, and haves you repeat them. The good thing is, since it's not part of the work out you can re-play all you want without fear of losing your place or lowering your heart rate. The dances themselves incorporate real moves, although of course a bit stylized to suit the whole workout dvd idea. The Cha-cha really works your abs and hips. It's a lot of figure eights and hip action. The Jive will KILL your legs. And the Paso Doble will make your arms ache. If done right it can also help with obliques. Again, I'm NEW NEW NEW to dancing, and so the steps are SUPER HARD for me, but I find myself practicing the steps everywhere, the kitchen, bathtub (not safe) etc. And I've gotten quite a few of them a lot sooner than I expected. If you can't do them correctly the first time, don't give up!! Keep practicing, just like the stars in the real show do, and trust me with time, you'll learn them and you'll be able to keep up! It's a real cardio work out and it really works your legs and abs. Plus, Julianne is really cute in a sweet sometimes a little dorky kind of way. It's not boring at all! And if you can't keep up or feel waaayyy too tired, don't worry! One of the backup dancers was having problems too! You could just see she was REALLY tired half-way through the Jive. So it's not like they're super people either :D Definitely get this workout if you want a fun cardio alternative to working the treadmill and want to learn a few sexy, cool moves at the same time!

EDIT: These workouts are killer! You don't stop moving and you don't slow down for one bit! If you think this is a sissy workout, you're sooo wrong. The Jive alone will MURDER you. Out of all the dance workout dvds I own, this one is by far the BEST and the HARDEST. You may need to pick a dance and repeat it over and over until you get all the moves down. Once you do that you can move on to the next.
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