DVDs Exercise Reviews: Billy Blank's Tae Bo Get Ripped Energise

by wlr member kathy james


High intensity workouts based on martial art movements.

What’s good about it?

Both DVDs have four sections – 8 minute workout, basic workout, advanced workout and instructional workout.

If you are new to Tae Bo you must carry out the instructional workout first to learn how to safely carry out the moves without injuring joints. This is a good workout in its own right but doesn’t have the fast paced aerobic qualities of the main workouts. Once you can carry out the moves safely you can progress.

The 8 minute workout is very intense and well worth waking up ten minutes earlier to do. This will wake you up and get your day off to a good start (no having to rush off to the gym – bonus being at home)! It’s also a great way of squeezing in some exercise when you are really pushed for time.

The basic workout is around 25 minutes long and incorporates punches and kicks carried out as part of a fast paced aerobic routine. This is long enough to feel like a ‘real’ workout but still short enough for anyone to fit in their schedule.

The advanced workout is around 45-50 minutes long and has similar moves to the basic workout but more of them!

Tae Bo is a great calorie burner (be careful not to add the warm up time to the total workout time though when completing your exercise diary) and is a great toning exercise for the arms, legs and midriff.

The classes of people carrying out the workout have a real mix of people from a child of about 7 to a lady in her late 70s! A few of the moves require good balance and its comforting to see the people in the class fall over sometimes when you are struggling to stay upright!

Don’t be put off by these moves when you start out – they are difficult to master but you will get better with time. The workout is intense and will get you sweating. Some of the moves take a bit of practise but get easier with time. This is a workout you can build up to. You can start by kicking low or just marching on the spot when you need to catch your breath.

Billy Blanks, the instructor, is full of energy and keeps talking the whole way through reminding you of good techniques and getting you counting out loud to keep time.

The workouts are a lot of fun and it’s great to have a selection of different length programmes to vary your routine and keep it interesting. I’ve been doing these workouts for a few months and I still look forward to and enjoy doing them! He encourages you to feel the muscles you’re working sometimes and its so encouraging to feel muscles like your obliques working. Also my arms have really toned up since I started and have a much better shape and none of the dreaded ‘bingo wings’!

The whole Tae Bo collection is huge so you can get some variety into your workouts but I would strongly recommend these to get you started.

What’s wrong with it?

It takes a little while to master the moves and you almost certainly won’t be able to keep up the first few times you do it. I find this motivational; however some people might find it very off-putting.

Billy Blanks doesn’t always get his counts right so sometimes you work your right side twice and don’t work your left at all! That’s easily remedied when you get used to it though by swapping sides yourself.

The cools down sections are brief to say the least! You may well want to incorporate some stretches yourself to stave off muscle ache.


High intensity aerobic workout that’ll leave you sweating, energised and feeling strong.

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