Hot New Fitness DVDs for the Holiday Season
Whether you’re choosing to give the gift of fitness or are just simply looking for fun new ways to stay in shape in the comfort of your own home this holiday season, here are three of the American Council on Exercise’s top picks for hot new fitness DVD’s that’ll work your entire body and have you breaking a serious sweat!
Jessica Smith’s 10 Pounds Down Better Body Blast
As a big fan of Chris Freytag’s 10 Pound Slimdown Xtreme which released late last year, I thought I’d be hard pressed to come across another DVD with the kind of quality, detailed instruction and effective exercises that video offers—until I got a sneak peek at the new 10 Pounds Down Better Body Blast, which will be released on December 4. With a similar-sounding name and featuring another dynamic instructor, Jessica Smith, this DVD delivers fun strength training routines that are conveniently divided up into three 20-minute segments (arms, abs and legs) and require nothing more than a pair of dumbbells and an exercise mat. With the option to tackle each workout individually if you’re pressed for time, or to combine them together to create one awesome full-body workout, this DVD is jam-packed with innovative, functional exercises that will undoubtedly have you breaking a serious sweat.
Where to buy: www.gaiam.com
Amy Dixon’s Breathless Body Volume 2: The Edge
In this day and age when everyone seems to be so pressed for time, who wouldn’t want to maximize her results by making the most out of her time spent working out? As a follow up to the wildly successful Breathless Body: The Ultimate Cardio Burn, this second installment in the series, Breathless Body 2: The Edge, provides a challenging 55-minute cardio workout that will work your entire body, pushing you to your limits while helping you to take your fitness to the next level. Using a cardiorespiratory training technique known as high-intensity interval training (which is personally one of my favorite ways to train) and involving no equipment at all, this workout is divided up into four different sets, each of which features three dynamic drills. Progressions and regressions options are offered for each of the drills, allowing you to customize your experience by choosing the movement option that is best suited for your fitness level. Amy also states at the beginning of the video that individuals should feel free to pause at any time if they need additional time to recover between drills. Each drill is performed for 30 seconds followed by 15 seconds of rest, and the sequence of three drills is repeated three times to make up one set. Amy ups the challenge in this workout by following the four sets with one final 6-minute set that revisits all 12 of the drills featured throughout the video. Given that this workout is high-intensity in nature and involves various plyometric exercises, safety and proper technique is of the utmost importance, so this DVD would be best suited for those who already have a fitness base.
Where to buy: www.amydixonfitness.com
STOTT Pilates Intense Body Blast: Pilates Interval Training Level 1
For those seeking a mind-body oriented approach to health and fitness, this DVD provides a total-body Pilates workout that focuses on quality of movement along with integrity of breath. With a run time of just over 30 minutes, this routine can be integrated into even the busiest of schedule. The only equipment required is a sticky mat, and moves can easily be performed in a small space. The workout begins with a dynamic warmup and is followed by an assortment of exercises that work to strengthen the musculature of core and enhance both stability and mobility while also strengthening the major muscles of the body. The instructor, PJ O’Clair, does an amazing job showing you through each movement, continually focusing on proper alignment, helping to ensure the effectiveness of each exercise. She also seamlessly transitions from one movement to the next, creating a well-rounded, easy to follow beginner routine that is sure to work your entire body.
Where to buy: www.merrithew.com
Having difficulty choosing the right DVD for you? Streaming fitness videos are another great option to help you stay on top of your fitness this holiday season. You'll find Pilates, kickboxing, cardio dance, and many other types of exercise, all taught by a variety of quality instructors.
Jessica Matthews is an exercise physiologist for the American Council on Exercise and a contributor to The Juice Bar
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