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on September 4, 2004
I had never done yoga or pilates before in my life, and knew nothing about the moves, etc. In fact, I was skeptical. Louise Solomon goes through a thorough explanation and demonstration. She is a certified Yogalates instructor from Australia, and her voice is calm and soothing while it allows you to focus on working the core muscles. There are 2 workouts on this DVD. I started with just the first one which is about 20 minutes. After a week I tried both workouts, which gives you an hour workout (this includes the relaxation portion, which I consider "dessert"). This workout works best if you also purchase stretch bands like she uses. I've worked out at least 5 days a week for the last 3 months and lost 2 inches in my waist and 4 inches in my abs (I'm eating healthy along with this program). Good workout and I feel rejuvenated upon finishing. Highly recommend for the beginner. I'm now working on her Vol 2 workout.
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on June 24, 2004
I am quite a bit over weight and very stressed out. I liked the idea of using the Yoga and Pilates together. A more seasoned exercise person may not find this that challenging, but I LOVED IT! I wish I had known before hand that I needed a stretchie cord. But it was wonderful!!! I especially enjoyed the relaxing meditation at the end. I felt really energized and truly relaxed after doing this!!!
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on March 9, 2006
Seven months ago, I was exercising religiously with high impact workouts. Then a bookcase fell on my lower leg/ankle. I could still walk, but high impact aerobics were definitely out of the question. For about six months, I didn't do any exercising at all. My muscles got weaker, and I gained weight. I decided I had to do something to get back in shape, so I started looking for lower impact workouts. This one sounded good, and the price was unbeatable, so I decided to give it a try. I am SO glad I did!!

For the past month, I have been doing this workout at least 3 times a week. My muscle tone is almost back to where it was when I quit exercising, and I have lost over 5 pounds without drastically changing my eating habits (in fact, I tend to eat a little more than I used to - my metabolism must be speeding up). The clothes that were once tight on me are now falling off. Even my injured ankle has been strengthened by the workout. I am now able to do some of the high impact workouts I was doing (although not quite as strenuously as I used to).

Louise Solomon promises that you will lose weight and tone muscle through this workout, and she certainly does not disappoint. Plus, this is a great way to relax after a stressful day at work. I recommend it to anyone who wants to be healthier.
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This inexpensive dvd which is divided in chapters by body part, comes in 5.1 dolby sound though seems a waste since there is no music, only her giving instructions & things to watch out for. Normally I hate when there's no music, but her lovely, clear, British accent is so soothing I didn't miss it. The camerawork is good with closeups of her & other students of the body parts you're working on.

There is an general intro about the benefits, general warnings & guidelines & what equipment you will need such as blanket, stretchy bands, etc. for 6 min, then her stting in a room alone showing you how to breathe deeply normally & toning abs when you breathe out using a stretchy band for 3 min. Next is her talking about your body's structure & aligment for 2 min.

The workout is done on a stark white stage/place w/her in back in a pink top/blank pants w/6 women in the foreground helping to demonstrate w/some modifying.

WORKOUT ONE starts at the 12 min. mark w/everyone laying down & almost a meditative start for 2 min before doing head rolls. Then breathing w/emphasis with ab use & then tilting the hip aligment to slightly stretch the abs/lower back. Next is raising the head slightly for very modified curl up to regular curl ups, then curl ups with elbows to bent knees til the 20 min mark.

Next is straight leg raises, then bent legs to chest for stretching, more straight leg raises w/1 bent leg, then bent knee spinal twist, then repeated to the other side for total of 4 min.

Next is using the stretchy bands sitting up around bent knees for spinal posture, then arm resistance, then leaing back & back up to sitting for abs & back for 5 min.

At the 29 min mark is laying back down for straight leg raised stretching, leg bent resistance, pilats leg circles in air, leg stretching w/stretchy bands & then repeated on the other side & concluded with a 1 min rest at the 37 min mark.

WORKOUT TWO w/her in a blue top, starts with them sitting up & noticing the body, then shoulder rolls for 2 min. Next is shoulder/arm twisting (feels great), then using stretchy bands arm extentions & slight spinal twists for 2 min. Next is laying down on 1 side, straight leg raises, swinging leg fwd, lower leg raises & then repeated on the other side for 5 min. Next is cat/cow yoga hands/knee stretching, then 1 arm/leg raising, bent knee in chest then raised to side, to elbow, etc. for 3 min to the 50 min mark. Next is working slowly up to downard dog & then childs pose & repeated several times, ending w/standing foward bend for 5 min.

Next is yoga standing poses starting w/triangle pose, warrior 1 & side angle & then repeated on the other side, then a wide standing forward bend, low simple leg lung stretching for 5 min.

Now at the 1 hour mark, they are sitting for arm/shoulder exercises w/stretchy bends extending & behind the back & concluding w/stretching the arm across the chest & neck stretching for 7 min for a total of 1 hour & 7 min.

In addition, there is a video of the beach at sunset for 2 min w/her narrating over guiding you to relaxation.

The workout is done in a slow, relaxed pace, so you don't feel rushed (unless you have to watch the clock, which case this DVD will annoy you) & not go to far & hurt yourself.

This is great for those who are new to working out & stretching, those who want a slow paced workout to be more in touch/tune w/how their body moves/reacts, active people looking for something for a very light day, when you're feeling more tired then usual, or those who haven't worked out all day, feel lazy, guilty & stiff, but don't want to sweat before going to bed. I enjoyed it & felt I did more because it was so relaxed & undemanding.

Take off 3 stars if you expecting the usual agressive workouts or to sweat.
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on February 23, 2006
I agree with everyone else.

I love this DVD. I did some yoga in my twenties, so I am little familiar with it. But I was totally unfamiliar with pilates.

I am also no longer in my twenties, but overweight and out of shape. So I was looking for an exercise program that I could actually do and one without a lot of jerky/straining movements.

The pace on this is good -- I never feel rushed. It may, at first, even appear easy, but some of the poses/exercises are rather challenging. I am still working on doing all of them correctly, especially those in the second workout.

There are two workouts. The first one uses bands and is mainly pilates. The second one incorporates more yoga and less band work -- only a few of those exercises use bands. I have found I really enjoy using a band, it enables me to do some exercises I might not have been able to do otherwise and it also offers resistance. Resistance seems to speed up the toning process.

Note that no bands are included, so I recommend the Gaiam bands.

After using this dvd a month, I have found that I am standing straighter -- it seems my back has more strength -- and my stomach is flatter. I also feel more energized.

You can't ask for much more than that.
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on January 12, 2009
I am 84 years old and politically active. One of my greatest joys is to knock on doors for candidates. In the past few years this has been impossible because I couldn't walk on pavement for more than five minutes without my back really hurting.

The physical therapist who was helping me gave me some yoga exercises which I dutifully did, but the biggest help came from Louise Solomon's Yogalates which I discovered in my collection of DVDs. How provident!

Within a short time I was able to get back on the political trail and furthermore walked two miles on a nature boardwalk a week ago.

Note: I have been doing mainly workout 1 (I have bum shoulders) and must do that if I plan to do any walking outside.

Because I found it so helpful I have been buying the DVD for my family and friends, hoping they will just try using it.

Laurel Paster
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on January 29, 2015
I tried a Yoga video once. I found it as helpful and interesting as watching grass grow (actually I think watching grass grow is more interesting). My daughter insisted that I do this video with her while I was visiting. I was reluctant, but did it anyway. I have back problems and often have lower back pain, well after doing the first routine on this video, I had to order it for myself. What a difference it made in the tightness I often feel in my back.
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on April 29, 2015
Excellent for any level, especially for any beginner, in any type of exercise... She really focus' on breath and proper body alignment , before doing any exercise.. A GREAT structure to build a strong foundation before going any further into any area of exercise- yoga, Pilates, running, weights, cardio.. This dvd gives the building blocks to proper breath and body posture , and is a great Dvd for yoga / Pilates work.

It simple, soothing, slow but not boring, and results are immediate
. Feel better, have energy, without lots of rapid movement. Great for anyone with injuries, or at any fitness levels, to go over the basics..
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VINE VOICEon May 1, 2011
I LOVE THIS DISC! This is a great one for people who are new to yoga or Pilates,
or are not sure if they are going to be able to DO it...I had one, lost it, and
was thrilled to be able to find another one available to purchase on Amazon.com
Honestly if you are over 40 (and I am WAY over!) You will see how she really
takes you through the breathing, stretching and also at your OWN LEVEL..there are
2 workouts on this disc I haven't ever made it to the 2nd one as I am limited...but,
the workout 1 is THAT good that I have never bored of it and it gives me a good
amount of exercise that does not hurt me. I think its a great starter or 'senior'
exercise disc.
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on January 20, 2014
I bought this to replace the one I bought years ago. It's a very simple video. There are no gimmicks in it, or ridiculous music or costumes. There are several session types, and the video instructs you on how to be careful and when you are ready for the next one. It makes for very good stretching and working out. I felt more toned, stretched, and even noticed my breathing improved.
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