Most helpful critical review
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Tango, Paso & Rock your way to sexy dancer's curves?
on February 22, 2011
The DVD: Dancing With the Stars: Ballroom Buns & Abs
The PROMISE: Tango, Paso & Rock your way to sexy dancer's curves.
If you watch Dancing With The Stars (or So You Think You Can Dance), there's no denying that the lady dancers have, well, insano-bods. I mean seriously. LOOK at them! No wonder their outfits are so, barely there. Hell, if I were them, I'd be naked all the time!
Aside from wanting to live in their abs, I also wanted to learn how to move the way they do. I've been on a bit of a dance kick lately, so I was really excited to try this workout. Like most new dance workouts, I did this one twice before writing this review. And while my dreams of being ballroom dancing superstar are perhaps a little unrealistic at this point (lol, who am I kidding!), I might still be able to get a ballroom bum bum. Bring on the Tango!
* Running Time: 60 minutes total, broken up into 3 sections.
* # of Workouts: 1-3
* Equipment Needed: A chair for the Argentine Tango & a mirror will help.
* Trainers: Chelsie Hightower, Edyta Silwinska, Kim Johnson
* Bonus Features: Ability to customize your workout & a music only option (YAY!)
* Approx. Cost? $10 - $15 on Amazon.com
Music: Instrumental ballroom, matched to the style of dance. Very much in the background.
Style: Choreographed cardio & dance, with a focus on sculpting & repetition.
Difficulty: Intermediate. Moves are fast at times and not always well explained. Unless you're a dancer, expect a few run-throughs before you feel confident.
Best Suited For: Dancey peeps or those not afraid of a challenge.
The Morning After: Really felt some soreness in my tush & thighs. It wasn't terrible, but noticeable. Soreness will depend on your intensity & length of the workout.
Dancing With the Stars: Ballroom Buns & Abs is a dance workout with a focus on toning your middle & lower body through classic ballroom moves (Tango, Paso Doble & Rock). There are 3 distinct sections that start by teaching you the basics of each dance routine, no partner required (the Argentine Tango substitutes a chair for a partner). You will build intensity & speed as you learn the routine, and there's no shame in doing the same section 2-3 times before you get it (you'll still get an intense workout).
The workout is challenging, will get your heart-rate up & tone you all over (in some surprising ways!). I liked the swivel steps in the Rock portion a lot, and some moves were a lot of fun to do, even when I felt like I couldn't keep up with the tempo or instructions.
HOW TO USE IT: In rotation with other workouts. It's a lot of lower body, a lot of cardio & a lot of coordination. Use it as cardio until you get used to the moves (the better you do them, the more toning benefits you'll get). Bonus? Add wrist weights for intensity and to get more out of the core elements.
HIGH FIVE FOR: Three completely different & challenging routines with a unique ballroom twist. They really focus on real dancing!
CAUTIONS & CONCERNS if... you've got lower body or joint issues. There's a lot of twisting & jumping about. If you're prone to lower back issues, feel free to take it easier in some sections. Push yourself but don't kill yourself. Protect your body. Also, because of the difficulty of some moves & the pace, those who are easily frustrated may have a tough time, especially if you're not naturally dance-y. Take it on as a challenge, it gets easier the 2nd & 3rd time around.
The dances were fun and the moves were challenging. I really felt like I got an intense lower body workout and learned a few new moves I could take to the dance floor (whether or not I should is a different story). I LOVED using the chair for the tango. I felt like a sexy, latin dancer with a bit of a stripper feel. Some moves I picked up right away and others took a little work. I like workouts with a learning curve (helps with boredom and it feels AMAZING when you "get" it later). The production value was good and I adore the option to have music only! (should be mandatory for all DVD's! Once I learn the moves, I wanna just have fun with it!)
For one thing, there was no warm up or pre-workout stretch. Considering the kind of moves you start with, I was kinda surprised. The second time around, I did my own warm-up before starting and I found it easier to jump right in to the choreography.
I would have liked a slower tutorial for some of the moves, especially for the Rock section. I was LOST on some of the moves, or couldn't do them at tempo right away. The instructions and cueing are lacking & inadequate for beginners or those who really need the instruction. I found myself having to adjust often & rewind to observe the moves. Edyta was the hardest to follow, likely because of language barriers (sorry! It's true!). The second time around was much easier, the third was even easier and so forth.
I liked this workout, but it took me a few tries to felt confident. Despite problems with the instruction & cueing, I still picked up most of the moves by the second time around. My roommate (who is NOT dance-y) liked the workout, but found it frustrating to keep up with the fast pace of the workout. Not sure that she'd do it again (at least not without some nudging from me). I would have liked more modifications but overall, it was still fun & energizing.
If you're like me, you like a challenge. While it's not as intense as a bootcamp, per se, it's still a good workout that got me going.
Overall Grade: B-
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