About two weeks ago I got an email from FitBottomGirls.com saying that I had won a prize pack in their Birthday Giveaway. I was shocked, because I never win anything (I had forgotten I had even entered, actually…), and then I was really excited because I had won seven exercise DVDs! These were ones I had never heard of before too, so that was really neat and I was anxious for them to get here so I could give them a shot.
Well, of course, they got here and then I realized that the living room was a wreck and needed to be straightened up before I could do the DVDs, which is why I’m just getting to them now. Oh, and just to let you all know, normally when I review DVDs, they are ones that I’ve purchased on my own. I am not getting paid to do this, so you can be assured that you will be getting a fair and unbiased review. If I ever do start getting gifts of DVDs to review, I’ll still review them honestly and will disclose when they have been donated.
So, since I’ve been bored of looking at our neighborhood, and since it’s getting pretty warm out even at 6 a.m., I decided to try Barefoot Cardio first. I was pretty unimpressed when I was previewing the DVD (I like to watch them before I do them so that I know what I’m getting in to. The only DVDs I don’t do this with are Leslie Sansone ones), but decided to give it a try and see if it was better while I was actually moving along with it.
I have to say, I do like this DVD! It’s not complicated and doesn’t require a whole lot of room. I managed to get by with about six feet of space across the living room. The only time I had problems was the first time I did the video, and that’s because the living room has a ceiling fan and I’m six feet tall. When reaching up high… well, I’m sure you get the idea. I’m just glad the fan wasn’t going, or I would have some bruised hands! There were a few moments of confusion when I first did the DVD because sometimes during kicks she doesn’t let you know when to switch beforehand, so I would look up and suddenly they’re on the other side. There’s nothing required to do this workout, not even shoes, which is another good thing. I can stumble out of bed in the morning and just get to it rather than having to put on my shoes.
The overall workout is pretty fun. I really like that there are moves in it I’ve never seen before. Of course you have your usual stepping side to side, shoulder rotations, plies, and some lunges and squats (It’s not real heavy on those though, so even if you don’t like lunges and squats, you may want to check it out), but there’s also things like Star Arms and Swan Extensions that I’ve never done before. Considering I was bored with my other workouts, this is a really good thing! I also like that it’s cardio, but with some sneaky toning and strength training in there, especially for the arms.
The DVD case is pretty nice. I don’t like that there’s an introduction before the DVD menu that I have to click through if I don’t want to hear it every time. The actual menu is very basic, with just a “Play All” and “Chapter Selection” option that, frankly, looks like someone made the thing with a home DVD burning software. That doesn’t turn me off from it though, I just was expecting something a tad more flashy based on how nice the DVD cases look. The actual production of the workout looks good. The set is nice, the sound quality is great, and I like Ellen Barrett’s energy through the workout. She manages to be upbeat without being “annoyingly perky”, which is good for me some mornings when I don’t want someone chirping at me. (As much as I like TurboJam, Chalene is guilty of being annoyingly perky at times) I think the music could have been a little bit better at spots because it all sounds like warm-up or cool-down music to me and I like something a bit more fast-paced when I’m doing a workout.
Also, I really like that there’s one assistant in the background doing the workout modified for less impact/lower intensity and that they actually show her quite a bit! I’ve seen some DVDs where they have someone doing a modified workout and then they hardly ever show them!
Barefoot Cardio definitely gets my heart rate going and makes me break in to a sweat. Overall, I give it 4 Spears out of 5! This one will definitely be making it in to my regular rotation of DVDs to do when I don’t want to go outside and walk or run.