A rousing fusion of fast-paced Ashtanga yoga, explosive martial arts and life-affirming meditation, Cameron Shaynešs Budokon system puts Eastern practices on a new plane. Anyone looking for a high-energy workout that also ... more »sharpens mental focus and brings a deeper feeling of purpose will find it on their own terms with Budokon. Shaynešs personal energy and passionate mastery of all three disciplines is affecting; the kicks and punches are exhilarating; and the meditations are both grounding and eye opening.« less
Erik Olson | Ridgefield, WA United States | 04/19/2005
(5 out of 5 stars)
"I've been looking for a martial arts based workout on DVD for my home fitness routine. But besides the various kickboxing titles like Tae Bo, "Budokon for Beginners" was the only one I found. The good reviews prompted me to take a chance on it. I was delighted with "Budokon for Beginners," and ended up getting more than I bargained for.
The workout begins with yoga, goes into martial arts, and ends with a Qigong meditation. The overall workout is good, and I wish it were longer. But it's quite effective on its own if you're pressed for time, or even better if you combine it with another activity (like 20 minutes on a stationary bike, for example). Cameron Shayne's instruction is great - he cues well and is easy to follow. As both a yoga newbie and black-belt level martial arts practitioner, I felt comfortable with his teaching.
In the martial arts portion, he uses real techniques and stances such as the front kick and Cat stance. It's the closest I've seen to the real deal on a mainstream video workout. That's not surprising, given Mr. Shayne's background as a high-ranking black belt instructor. Indeed, it was almost like being in an actual Karate class. The bulk of the martial arts section consists of straight punches and front kicks from stances, which are among the first techniques we teach to new students at our dojo. With that in mind, as a Karate Sensei I would recommend this DVD for folks planning to begin a martial arts class, or even for current practitioners. The yoga will help build core strength and flexibility, also important for martial artists.
Speaking of yoga, "Budokon for Beginners" turned out to be a good investment in more ways than one. Besides its faithfulness to martial arts technique, it was my first exposure to yoga. I never thought I'd get into it, but this DVD led me to investigate yoga and add it to my workout regimen. As a result, I've enjoyed a number of yoga workouts by Rodney Yee, Baron Baptiste, and others. It's always nice to get turned on to a new thing that's good for you. Along those lines, I've also purchased Gaiam's "T'ai Chi Beginning Practice" and "Qigong Beginning Practice." So far I've been happy with the Gaiam line of workout DVDs and yoga equipment.
NOTE: The Gaiam website indicates that Cameron Shayne has a Budokon weight loss system nearing release that includes three workouts. From what I've seen in "Budokon for Beginners", I'll be purchasing it as soon as it's available. UPDATE 10/11/05: If you have this DVD, you don't need "Budokon for Weight Loss." The workout portions are very similar. See my review of it for more details."
I love this workout!!!
Jennifer Ortiz | Morristown, NJ United States | 03/07/2005
(5 out of 5 stars)
"This is a great workout that combines yoga, martial arts, and meditation. Cameron Shayne is a great instructor. He is clear and his demonstrations are easy to follow. I'm not the most athletic person and this is my first try at yoga, so I would put this DVD at beginner to intermediate. If I can do it, well, anyone can. I actually purchased the DVD directly from his website and he sent the DVD autographed. I thought that was a great personal touch.
This is also a great workout for someone who is short on time. The instructional version is about 40 minutes, or you can do the workout without instruction. I haven't tried that one yet, but after doing the workout for a week, I think I'm ready to give it try.
I do hope that he comes out with another more advanced workout soon."
Good pace, nice mix of exercise
Tara L. Campanella | FPO, AE United States | 05/24/2005
(5 out of 5 stars)
"I read about this DVD in a gossip mag and saw that many celebrities used Cameron's teachings. I thought, why not try it and see if I can get a celebrity body. I had experience in yoga before doing this tape, but even if I did not, the poses were easy enough to follow along. I like the layout of exercises. We started with yoga, then martial arts and end with meditation. It is the perfect warm up, work out and cool down. I love the way Cameron takes time in between each exercises to "find your breath" rather than rush through things like most workout programs. I found it to be moderately challenging and I broke out in a good sweat. I think this is a great program and it is nice to do something different to make exercising more fun. Highly recommend!"
Good Concept But Execution Lacks
S. E. Nelson | Minnesota, USA | 04/30/2005
(3 out of 5 stars)
"I practiced martial arts for a short period when I was younger and enjoy yoga more and more the older I get. Mr. Shayne's fusion of these two practices is intriguing but the video short changes the benefits of both. I agree with other critics that the martial arts section could be a couple minutes longer. What I found most disappointing was the hurried pace with which Mr. Shayne moved from pose to pose in the yoga section. The only pose held for any length of time is the perpetual downward-facing dog. None of the other poses are held long enough to warm up the muscles for the fast-paced kicks and jabs in the martial arts section. It seems like Mr. Shayne is determined to compress the entire ashtanga/power yoga cycle into the allotted 20 minutes. I recommend to the next instructor out there contemplating a similar workout video that they do fewer yoga poses, hold them longer and add a couple more minutes of martial arts. Also don't count the meditation finale into the workout time -I bet a lot of people are like me and heading to shower after one minute of searching for their center. Good points of this video, beyond the concept, are the pose guide and Mr. Shayne has a nice presence and good demeanor - unlike my old martial arts instructor."
Yoga or Martial Arts? Let's have both!
Heather Kenyon-Haff | Jericho, VT United States | 12/02/2005
(5 out of 5 stars)
"I've been very pleased with this workout DVD, mostly because it uses yoga and martial arts in the same workout...handy if you are balancing strength, stretch, and cardio.
I appreciate that there is a long, instructional version, and a short version which has minimal instructions. This avoids tedious going over important details if you already have it down.
Cameron Shayne imparts a great attitude throughout the video...positive without chirpiness, gentleness without wimpiness, and brings in some of the more "spiritual" aspects of martial arts and yoga without being dogmatic or off-putting. I really like how he gives time enough to recenter and refocus and breathe throughout the workout. Definitely a great teacher.
I think is really a better workout for the intermediate exerciser. If you're just starting out in yoga or "kickboxing" workouts it may be too exhausting or difficult.
Oh, and even though the DVD states this is one whole workout, you actually CAN do just the yoga or just the martial arts if you're short on time. Just be sure to stretch before the martial arts."