BODYPUMP™ 89, My Personal Review!

BODYPUMP™ 89

BODYPUMP™ is the fastest way in the universe to get in shape; muscular tension, metabolic stress combined together to build strength, tones and shapes and burns body fat

This how Glen presented the new release; a great brief defention of what BODYPUMP™ is.

Let’s check the Warm Up: (Dane Rumble featuring Jupiter Project- Not Alone)

I like warm ups that hit with back and hamstrings; it’s too many muscles there that need to be taken care of before an actual great workout.  There is a very interesting thing here; triple rows twice then slowly going up with the lyrics : you are not alone! That moves to the shoulders, down to the legs, back to shoulders, then back again and shoulders. BODYPUMP™ family are making sure you are warm this time by adding push presses at the end of the warm up.

Squats: (R3hab featuring Bassjackers- Raise Those Hands)

Oh yeah! The music is absolute madness! Lovely Lovely choice! This sounds like engineering and creating new muscles.

We’ve got bottom halves, top halves, big singles, down and holds. The track is quite tough, controlling breathing is essential, and if you are the type of people who gets so invovled and taken away by music, this track will take care of you when you think you can’t go on anymore, the music is uplifting it’s all good.

Chest: (Fall Out Boy- Where Did The Party Go)

Important?

The A press is becoming the main subject here regarding the chest track, we are seeing this frequently recently. Besides that quality is over quantity.

Bar and plates: results, isolation, results, isolation and more results.

The music is not my type, but it’s okay, at least it’s a positive track 🙂 , I liked the track used in squats better.

Back: (Nero- Me & You)

Let’s work our posterior-chain; the gluts, hips and the hamstrings. high intensity interval training. NO CLEAN AND PRESSES?? That is cool! New is always cool!

Wide grip dead lifts, wide grip dead rows are perfect for your middle back, heavy single plates: squats and push presses (HIIT) will allow all your body to work, and changing the grip to under-hand grip activates your upper back.

There is some interesting change here, not doing any clean and presses doesn’t mean you are not working your back, in this track you are allowed to challenge yourself with heavier weight than usual. Glen while designing this track did focus on mixing the mechanical tension with the metabolic stress, please do check your choreography notes for more details, or watch the DVD where he explains it.

Triceps: (Lady Gaga-Applause)

four sets of work, very amusing and challenging. How does it start and finish? Triceps push ups, kneeling over head extensions, that applies to the first two sets. In set three the exercise changes to dips and we finish with seated over head extensions.

I generally like triceps tracks, since they exercises chosen usually hit the muscles right, isolates them and they are usually fun.

Biceps: (The Killers- When You Were Young)

New move?? Yeah! The open arm curl! 

So hammer curls, open arm curls, then using light bars to continue the work.

Honestly I didn’t like the song chosen! But the workout is a killer!

Lunges: (Ellie Goulding- Burn)

More and more changes, everyone love change, right?

In the lunges track this time BODYPUMP™ brings to us new tempos which introduces isometric holds, the holds at the end of each move brings the burn to the muscles, causing them to fatigue and eventually change. The holds here are so important and they are the core of the workout!

Shoulders: (Brooklyn Bounce & DJ Zealot- True Hardstyler)

Brooklyn Bounce became the band for our shoulders! I love that! Bring it down to the floor and get two sets of push ups! All the crazy upright rows, the top halves, over head presses, push presses, rotator raises, and rotator overhead presses to kill your shoulders! This one is certainly crazy and demanding! Good luck to those of you like me with relatively weak shoulders 😛

Good luck teaching it, and good luck attending the class!

Katia

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BODYCOMBAT™ 59, My Personal Review!

Hello there!

I guess I forgot to tell you that I’m a LES MILLS™  BODYCOMBAT™ instructor. Although I was hooked up for a while with BODYPUMP™ I haven’t reviewed any BODYCOMBAT™ releases. My bad!

Anyway, BODYCOMBAT™ 59 has been already launched in some countries, not Jordan though, we are still waiting! But that doesn’t mean I can’t review it!

Let’s start with the warm up in BODYCOMBAT™ 59; personally, I’m sorry, I didn’t like the first musical track used for the warm up, but the second is pretty cool (I Knew You Were Trouble, and Everything About You). The warm up this time isn’t challenging but rather playful, the upper body warm up or as we call it (1A) starts with Boxing, moving towards Karate then Capoeria which is pretty interesting to include the Capoeira in the upper body warm up.

The lower body warm up (1B) starts with Karate takes us to another level with some Muay Thai kicks, then changes to Taekwando.

The warm up generally is easy to follow. I hope you enjoy it!

Track 2 (Combat 1); the track (Danger Zone) is making the workout looks tougher than it is. I like the music. Here they combined Boxing, Swords and Taekwando together. The track is relatively short, but can be really fun.

Track 3 (Power Training 1); Wooohoo!! Alright if you think your upper cuts are not so good, here is the time for you to go to your instructor before or after the class and let them teach you how to upper cut properly! This track focuses mainly only one arm training at a time, almost. It goes in three rounds, and it finishes with an interesting (1,2,3) counts for upper cuts then a combo of jabs and upper cuts. I like this one regardless of the music :P, because it’s quiet challenging. If you think your upper body is weak this one will give it strength and endurance, try it out!

Track 4 (Combat 2); THIS ONE IS CHALLENGING! A lot of focus goes here to the legs, with a taste of different martial arts, you are going to feel your legs burning and your heart rate is going insane, it’s a fast moving track. I do appreciate the music choice a lot here (A Warriors Call); tough, heavy and artistic music! If I say challenging that doesn’t mean you get scared of it, take easy options for a while till you can go harder.

Track 5 (Power Training 2); Cardio, cardio and more cardio. This one got me a bit emotional (hehe) I dedicate this one to my best friend and fitness buddy Shahed Muflih, why because: Bright like the sun you are always shinning there for me, etc. I LOVE OUR FRIENDSHIP BUDDY!

Anyway back to reviewing it; 3 rounds, lots of hooks and sing alongs! The Last round is quite interesting with the pushes and the lungings! Loved it!

Track 6 (Combat 3); Kung Fu and Capoeira? Sounds interesting no?

Actually awesome! To learn to balance on one leg, to help balancing the strength of your legs muscles as you kick slow, to get the chance to conditioning your legs by doing esquivas and to jump lung? This is madness mixed with dubstep! Well designed, your abs are definitely gonna love it!

Track 7 (Muay Thai); if you day dream often of running in some street fighting random enemies and monsters the music will give you a great background to day dream stronger (Lost in Space). I can’t say more, nothing new in the Muay Thai tracks since a looooooooooong time!

Track 8 (Power Training 3); you will be (Falling From The Sky) after finishing the 8 tracks. Pretty cool song here, the speed will work you out. I have always been a fan of combining the upper cuts with the hooks and you will get to experience this in round 3.

Right, so let me criticize something here, sadly the presentations we used to see on DVDs were much of a better quality in terms of performances, techniques and the teams used to be more organized on the stage than we see now. For a while we had Dan and Rach alone on the stage, and I personally thought they should get more people to perform with them, but too many is not good either for the mess that happens on the stage, for the minimum amounts of standardizing the teams. I personally don’t agree with this, especially for the new instructors to see this, they won’t get the chance to take a look at many good role models. I don’t see the point of having a whole army of people on the stage, sorry!

Enjoy the new release, and if you are an instructor please focus on the techniques of your members.

Salute!

Katia J

Teaching Kids to Play the Piano “A perfect therapy!”

My Niece and I
My Niece and I

Dealing with kids was never my favorite thing to do. As I didn’t have enough patience in general, and for them precisely. But with time my patience stretched itself to become wider than before. Kids are indeed the small versions of adults, but in a vulnerable way. They are smart, open, sensitive, joyful, playful, cheerful, curious, considerate, and positive. Unlike adults they learn faster, whether academically or socially, and their tempers are also shorter; not necessarily in a bad way, a child’s action and reaction are quite fast and short lasting. Which means it’s easy to deal with. Kid’s have their own worlds of imagination, they do create their own fantasies and they do like to live in their own bubbles when they have a chance to, and this is absolutely beautiful, since imagination helps them understand people and things around them, and of course themselves better.

It is very important to look at any child as a very important investment, and to take in mind that whatever input they get now ,the output in the future will be reflected, sooner than we expect. What I like about kids, besides being innocent, is their observation skills, and how their brains are made like sponge, they absorb everything they hear, see and notice. Therefore we should be careful around them, seriously careful.

Noticing a child’s talents and skills is their parents huge responsibility, and whatever skills and talents they have must be taken in consideration, in order to expand them and help the child reach out for something new, and something they can benefit from either in the present time, or in their future or both.

So how’s dealing with kids a positive necessary experience?

I’m  not saying I’m ready to have a child but for me, my work obliges me to deal with adults on daily basis, which means massive amounts of stress, headache and pressure, sometimes for a reason and sometimes for nothing. Not everyone you meet at work is a sweetheart! right? So when comparing dealing with kids and dealing with adults, kids do relief stress with their spirit as children, with their joy and laughter, besides their problems and worries  are relatively small and can be solved in no time. Unlike adults, since some adults like to live their problems and worries as a never ever ending drama movie, or maybe they do have serious problems and issues that actually cannot be easily solved.

I disagree with parents who say children and demanding and needy! STOP here for a second! You either spoiled them too much, or they need you because they are helpless and without you they cannot be or do, and being a parent it is your responsibility to help them in certain subjects to a certain extent, plus being a parent means you wanted to bring these kids to life not that they asked you to, so please? On the other hand, adults are needy and demanding while they are capable of doing everything by themselves, of course we are talking about healthy adults here.

Children have no hidden agendas, and they don’t have bad intentions, I’m talking about the majority of kids. And in case you hurt a child with or without intention you’ll soon find it out, as they are open and cannot hide their feelings. So again kids are easy to deal with, because it’s easy to understand what happened to them and what they want and what they don’t want. While adults in general do have hidden agendas, bad intentions and are able to hide their feelings; either to protect themselves or hurt others.

Kids are curious in a good way, not that they can control it, it’s part of their nature, and this is why they learn and absorb info. That means if they like a certain person they consider them their prefect reference. How cool is that? So If you are cheerful and happy, even if you have to fake it or pretend it for their sake to keep them happy, and have something new to say or show they do listen, process and apply, and take you as a role model. This by itself helps you learn how to behave, decide what to say, and what not to do, and it does affect you positively to feel like a super hero for a child. And that is not what you may get from adults, as every adult believes they are a super hero (lol) and so they do not need other super heroes around (double lol)!

The more you live the more you miss your childhood days! Yes! I have noticed that. And yes I do know and understand that today’s children have complete different childhoods than we had. But still they are still inside their childhood zones, so keeping in touch with them means keeping in touch with your own childhood in a way or another, which is very very cool and interesting.

And so, how’s teaching kids to Play the Piano ( or any other instrument or skill) a perfect therapy?

Well, during the piano class, I chill and relax, I explain things in so many ways until things are clear. You may wonder how can someone chill and relax while teaching a class of anything? Well If I compare what I do at work and what I do at home for the kids, then yes I do have a chance to chill and relax during a piano class, unlike when I teach a class at the gym! makes a difference right? So the piano class is a physical relaxation therapy session. Plus I keep the atmosphere friendly during the class, because I don’t want students, I want students who are my friends, even if they are maybe decades younger than me.

During my piano classes, I keep in mind all the things that I hated when I was a piano student and I don’t apply them in my class. Example, I hated so much in summer school holidays the fact that I couldn’t use any nail polish because my piano teacher back then forbade us from using such things, saying: YOU MUST LOOK ELITE LIKE A LADY. Ok well-done! I agree! a pianist is an elite person who looks well and behaves well. BUT!! school kids don’t have a chance to do things like nail polish, let hair loose, use fake tattoos on arms and shoulders, wear jeans pants or shorts. And this goes on almost the whole year. So if I had a student coming to play the piano with their slippers, I do not mind, because these are kids, and maybe they were swimming before they came to me, so I’m cool cool with that. One of my piano students is 5 years old, and she doesn’t notice how she sits down properly at the beginning of the class, and as time passes by and her concentration level goes up her feet automatically lay underneath her, or she crosses her legs and plays the piano. If I did that when I was a child I would have been scolded biiiiiig big time! But hey! That is just a child who is trying to focus, why make it harder? So here I’m breaking old rigid rules from my past that I hated and I smile while I let those rules break one by one! SET OUR KIDS FREE! Yes please.

Listening to kids hitting the keys trying to make the thing they are playing sound like proper music is fantastic and fascinating. Their little hands and fingers can actually do so much, they do impress me a lot to be honest, I haven’t been around kids for so long, up until I decided that I want to teach how to play the piano again. I actually did in the past and I stopped since I had no patience for kids.That does make me think deeper of a human’s physical and mental structure and PRAISE THE LORD! 😀

Looking at their facial gestures changing as they get excited by being successful or unsatisfied by making mistakes helps me each day see behind their faces, and that helps me know how to let them get over their weaknesses. That leads to understanding adults through children. And it is indeed a necessity.

Teaching a kid something they want to learn, helps you motivating yourself to get up and go learn something you’ve always wanted to learn, or to do something you’ve always wanted to do. How? Because when I sit for an hour motivating a child to do what they came for, I realize that yes I’m a motivator so why not to motivate myself? Nothing stops me!

Life sometimes can be rigid and boring, the routine can be a killer, and running in a hamster’s wheel is something I refuse to do for long periods. So teaching kids to play the piano is something that breaks my routine, and for that reason, I try my best not to make the class rigid, lame, pressuring or boring; for my sake and for the children’s.

The fact that you teach a child something (good) and them being successful doing is a very big reward for you! If they succeed it means you also succeeded. So that is also another good reason why adults should teach kids something good and wait for the results, to evaluate themselves as successful or unsuccessful creators.

A note to adults!

Keep your kids busy with good and useful things. I hear adults on daily basis complaining saying they are bored. Boredom is destructive for the body, the mind and the soul. And teaching people since childhood to get busy will guarantee them being busy their entire lives.

I might have sounded sarcastic in some parts of this post, but I’m sorry that is my personality. At least I hope you enjoyed reading.

Katia 🙂