I started taking the Zumba classes and was so in love with them that I wanted to do them at home. After researching the Zumba DVD's, I stumbled across this set and bought it. I loved it- but it wasn't like the Zumba Beginners class that I was taking. The first DVD is a beginners DVD that shows you how to do the steps, and includes a 20 minute workout. I am a fairly fit, active female, and broke a sweat in no time with just the instructional DVD. They break each step down into 'easy', 'medium', and 'hard' so you can learn the steps and be confidant enough with them to move up into the other DVD's. Other reviews thought this was lame- I actually loved it. It was very helpful, here I thought I knew the steps all along and I really didn't. It will also help me with my class. The 20 minute workout is also a good beginners dvd, but I assume would get old after you get good at the moves. The Zumba Live DVD is probably most like the Zumba classes, where there is no instruction, and everyone is just dancing in rows. Surprisingly, you can pick up what they're doing, and I really didn't see them use the moves you learn from the first DVD too much, it was a little more freestyle. Beto, the creator of Zumba is kinda crazy- he's hard to understand, but the other female instructors are great and easy to follow.
I also thought this was very different than my classes. I was hoping to hear some of the same music and routines that I see in the live classes I attend, but it's different- not better or worse, just different than I was expecting. The 'weighted dumbells' are kinda lame- they're long, and not real heavy- I haven't used them yet because I find it hard to add yet another dimension to these moves still. You want to make sure you have a good area in front of your TV to do this on, and that you have the ability to jump and move your body weight without having to worry about things falling off bookshelves and such. The reviews that this was cheaply done and put together are false- how could it be cheap? It looks pretty clear from the pictures what you're getting. There were several DVD's and a dumbell set and I thought Amazon.com's price was reasonable for what you get. I don't know what these other people were expecting. I guess this is going to be sold on infomercials, but I have yet to see one yet- it's put together by that Gunthey-Renker brand that touts several other 'as seen on TV' products.
In all, I would highly recommend this, and recommend you wear hip-hop shoes (like the Bloch S0538L sneakers), and as few clothes as possible- each time I try to do this in a tshirt, I end up having to put on a tank by the end of the workout. Get ready to sweat and work your butt off- and you'll be well on your way to needing hip replacement surgery after all this latin dancing!!
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