"This is the only Pilates video I've ever used where I did not get bored with the instructor talking too much or by showing every exercise 5 times before you do it. The workout is a good 30 minutes and by the end, I felt like only 15 minutes had gone by! The instructor is wonderful - showing an advanced version and a beginners version for each exercise. The exercises flow very smoothly and work all muscles of your body. I'm anxious to try the 12-minute extra workout, as well."
Good workout for the New Year ;-)
Little Miss Cutey | Melbourne, Australia | 01/01/2007
(5 out of 5 stars)
"We almost all have a resolution to workout more and get in better shape and this is a good place to begin. I have the other Shape workouts and they are all good as is this. With the usual pilates moves and a fast paced pace, it's a good and challenging routine to do. Lizbeth Garcia leads it, and she's motivating and she cues well. There is a ten minute routine at the end done with dumbells and led by Tracey York. Both are excellent instructors and the whole routine is fun and flows well. It's a nice break from all the cardio, but just about as important. It's about 48 minutes or so all up, and I think that if you are intermediate or advanced, then it's perfect for you."
A full-body Pilates workout with some unique twists
Beth Cholette | Upstate NY USA | 07/08/2007
(4 out of 5 stars)
"In this Pilates workout, instructor Lizbeth Garcia puts some unique spins on a traditional Pilates matwork sequence. Rather than begin with the hundred (in fact, the hundred does not even appear), she starts with a modified roll-up, adding an oblique move before going on to the full roll-up. She also switches up other classic Pilates sequences such as the Series of 5: in Liz's version of this series, you begin with a single leg sweep in and out, add leg circles, move into the single leg stretch, add criss-cross, and finish by flowing into the single straight leg stretch. There is also quite a bit of leg/glute work here, not just with Liz's variation on the side series, but also with some moves performed on all fours as well as a challenging push-up series which adds a leg lift. Although most of the Pilates moves that Liz includes are generally considered beginning level (ie, there are no rollovers, teasers, or other more intermediate/advanced Pilates exercises here), Liz's flowing pace combined with her unique twists make this more of an intermediate Pilates workout.
This DVD also includes a "Bonus Total-body Blitz," which is a 12-minute weighted workout led by another Shape instructor, Tracy York. Tracy uses 2 sets of weights here, and after a very quick warm-up, she starts with some compound moves: squats and lunges with biceps curls. She also does several series of moves that flow together, such as a shoulder row, mid-back row, and overhead press combo and a second combo that includes a front raise, reverse shoulder squeeze, and elbow lower. The moves on the floor include a push-up/leg lift combo, a chest series, and a few nice weighted abs moves. Overall, this workout does hit a lot in a short period of time.
Finally, this DVD includes a nice little booklet called "Simple Tips to Better Health"; it contains Pointers on Pilates Form, Power Up Your Pilates (a review of basic Pilates principles), 4 Simple Calorie Blasters, and A Few Facts about Breast Health (this DVD is also sometimes referred to as "Pilates for Pink," as part of the proceeds go to the Breast Cancer Research Foundation). I would say that his DVD is most ideally suited to advanced beginner to intermediate Pilates practioners who are looking to work their whole body and don't mind more non-traditional Pilates sequencing."
Good for beginners, Not challenging for others
Heather | Bay Area, California | 02/22/2007
(2 out of 5 stars)
"What I love most about Pilates is that it strengthens core muscles, and I am usually a little sore after a good Pilates workout. I was not sore at all after this workout. Although Shape Pilates was not boring, it was not challenging either. I think this DVD is excellent for someone who has not exercised in years and would like to begin, but it is not advanced enough for a person who exercises on a regular basis. I did not even break a sweat during the Pilates workout or the bonus strength-training (bonus was a little more challenging than the Pilates workout)."
Great full body workout
D. Chin | 05/26/2010
(5 out of 5 stars)
"This is the first Pilates DVD I ever purchased and I had never taken a class. From the beginning it was challenging and it took me a few weeks just to make it through the entire workout and a little longer to do so without modifications. The pace is fast and gets your heart rate up. I also like the fact the instructor starts with small movements and works into larger ones, so muscles have a chance to warm up. This is great for someone like me who is prone to injury, has a back injury and needs to ease into deep extension of muscles and tendons. The video also takes you through transitions from one exercise to the next in ways that are easy and natural. It is not a great video for a newcomer to pilates because this video focuses more on keeping a fast pace, than on form. So it's best for someone who is familiar with the moves and doesn't need a lot of instruction on form. I have tried other DVDs and so far this one is my favorite. However, I've been doing it for several months now and I'm bored so I am researching new pilates DVDs. It will always be in the rotation."