Friday, February 25, 2011

Review-- Attitude: Ballet & Pilates Fusion

 I know this isn't with this month's theme, but screw the theme! Those are just guidelines ;) Now this DVD is actually marketed for those fifty and up, so the exercise is much slower and has less impact. Also, donations are made to find a cure for breast cancer for each DVD you purchase. Attitude is part of a series, and there is a second DVD for this Attitude series. I'll only be reviewing the first one. So since I didn't have time to fit this into last month, here is the review for Attitude: Ballet & Pilates Fusion.

Now as you can see,  there are several parts to this workout. First here is the introduction where the instructor speaks a bit about the exercise. Then there are the form pointers and then the two workouts. The form pointers will go over the correct posture for the ballet moves. She'll also demonstrate each of the positions so you can become familiar with them if you're not already. This section is rather lengthy, but highly recommended if you've never taken ballet before.
Going over the proper form
The workout is broken into two and each is about thirty-seven minutes each. The first is meant to be completed for the first couple weeks and then you move onto the second one for the rest of the time you use the video. I found the first workout way to easy and didn't even break a sweat. The second workout was a little better, but still rather easy and barely different. I would definitely recommend this if you've been out of shape for a long time and want to work your way back slowly.
She'll also go over positioning for the abdominal work.
 This workout workouts out abs, arms and legs. For the arm exercises you'll need some sort of weight. They use a ball filled with sand for this video but a hand weight works as well. I think the abs are the highlight of the video. I seem to get the most burn from them. The ballet exercise portions are fine, but I prefer the routines from other videos better. I still feel a slight burn  but some of the exercises are rushed over.
The warm-up is simply not good enough. It doesn't warm up all the muscles, just the sides of the abs since all you're doing is circling your arms and the hips from pliés. I highly suggest you stretch yourself ahead of time before participating in this exercise so you don't injure yourself. 
The instructor does a good job. She speaks in a hushed voice and tries to be more relaxing than energetic. She'll also occassionally remind you to keep your form, and she times her reminders well, like when you're really starting to tire or if you're concentrating hard on a different area of the body other than your core.

I did notice her form was off during fourth position. Her knees went over her heels. That can be really dangerous. I only really noticed because this is something I struggle with while dancing. During the form section, she mentioned that fourth position was going to be "one of the harder positions," and I think that's a fair statement. Still, if you're watching this and trying to model yourself after her, she will only occasionally have the correct form. Since this is for women over 50, it might be dangerous to not have the correct posture, especially on your knees, so be sure to know what you're doing and watch the form video. Trust yourself. The backup instructors tend to mess up a lot. I would focus more on her than anyone else.
TIMMMBEEERRRRRRR! (Or at least that's how I felt, hahaha)
The music is horrible! I hate, hate, hate the music! Music is like Chinese traditional music mixed with a bit of Enya--only know where near as good and relaxing. Then there's this really bad trumpet sounding music that sounds like those old midi files you heard on websites when the internet was still a scary new place... it's bad. I can't stand it.

Sometimes you would catch sides of the camera during zoom out, but other than that, the editing was really good. The camera did a great job of zooming in on the main instructor. I never really had any trouble with it so I thought it did a good job.
They shot the location in studio, but they tried to spruce it up a bit so it's not too boring. They put some barres in the back but never used them for the exercise. It wasn't bad at all. I enjoyed the colors, and it seemed appropriate for the exercise. Still, in comparison to other DVDs, this isn't my favorite studio. I like Balocity or Element's settings much better.

Workout: 7/10
Instructor: 9/10
Setting: 8/10
Camera: 9/10
Level: Beginner
Is it actually ballet? Yes
Overall: 8/10
I didn't really enjoy this exercise as much as the others since it felt too simple. Though the exercise definitely had ballet and Pilate influences, it just didn't work well with my body. I would recommend this for someone who's not used to exercise, but not to someone starting ballet for the first time since the instructors are not ballet dancers or teachers. 

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