Newest Review: ... 100 calories in ten minutes, but if you want an exercise that is more varied then Tae bo is for you. I will put Tae bo's calorie burn in... more
Tae bo will change your life
Member Name: Sunrisesunset
Advantages: real people, massive calorie burn, good music, fun, quick pace, mini workouts, pep talk
Disadvantages: unbalanced, too fast, too similar
Four years ago I decided to start getting fit. At 200lbs (I'm 5 ft 2), I could barely work out for a few minutes. After conquering my exercise machine, I saw a Tae bo box set and decided to jump right in. A month later I had lost an inch off my waist, and was ready for more.
Tae bo is basically martial arts with a hint of dance. Sometimes you do the moves in time with the music. In many of the videos each exercise is performed in sets of eight. This means that you can count how many repetitions and/or sets left before the next movement. The class is led by Billy Blanks, a successful martial arts instructor and competitor. He is always accompanied by his daughter Shelly, who keeps track of the sets, leads the counting, and keeps the class pumped.
Instead of involving fitness instructors and models, Tae bo features 'real' people. Mothers who have had six children, people who lost weight doing Tae bo, Billy's daughter Shelly. The older Tae bo videos feature an even greater range of people: overweight, young, old, short, tall, advanced, basic, black, white, biracial, etc. Everyone looks different and it is comforting to see them struggling when you are. They are all human, not just fitness models with six packs and pretty faces.
-100 calories in ten minutes
Tae bo burns a massive amount of calories. Running and jump rope also burn approx 100 calories in ten minutes, but if you want an exercise that is more varied then Tae bo is for you. I will put Tae bo's calorie burn into perspective based on calorie burns using my height and weight (5 ft 2 and 150lbs, yes I'm overweight). Yoga burns approx one hundred calories in thirty minutes. High impact (lots of jumping around) aerobics burns around one hundred and fifty in thirty minutes. Tae bo burns three to four hundred calories in the same time. Yes, three to four times more!
-Whole body workout
You work EVERYTHING with Tae bo: arms, legs, abs, bum, back, calves, etc. Even when you focus on one area you are still working another. This means that you burn more calories than if you worked one area of your body at once.
The music is not great or brilliant, but it's not something I would mute. In the older DVDs, it's 90s chart music but no songs that I recognise- I think I was around five when the first videos were shot, so maybe that's why. Sometimes the songs have motivational words like 'You can do it!' and 'Victory!'.
Some of the DVDs are purely bootcamp style- you are there to feel the burn and push yourself to the max. Other Tae bo workouts have a more dance-like feeling behind them. You punch, kick, etc in time with the music. This means that you can work out depending on how you feel on the day.
Often Tae bo's warm up feels like the main workout. After briefly walking on the spot, you start punching, kicking, etc. Then you do some stretches and then the main workout begins. The cool down is also fast. You walk on the spot, stretch, and then walk while Billy gives you a motivational pep talk. I like that there is no dilly dallying. If I am sore, I do more stretches while Billy is speaking at the end.
-8 minute workout
Some DVDs include an 8 min workout. The entire workout usually lasts from twelve to fifteen minutes, but the main segment is 8 minutes. Don't let the short time fool you. I doubt that you will EVER work as hard in eight minutes as you do during these workouts. I thought they would be easy, but sweat will dripping down in bucket loads. They are like the usual Tae bo workouts but faster and with one or two brief moments to catch your breath. One woman did these workouts once or twice a day for three months and lost thirty pounds. If you are a busy person, these workouts will suit you perfectly.
There are times when Billy says that we have one more set of eight to go, but then he starts talking...and talking...and talking, so you end up doing three or four more sets. This means that you get to burn more calories, which is obviously great, but one side of your body will be worked more than the other. I would say that both sides of my body are equally as strong, but when you work one side more than the other, it's sorer the next day.
-Too fast for some
I have been doing Tae bo for almost four years, but at times I still need to move slower than the participants do. I have spoken to other Tae bo lovers who do the same thing, so it's not just me. If you can go as fast as the people on the workouts then good for you, but if not then don't injure yourself trying to keep up with them.
I have eleven Tae bo DVDs, and many of them have three workouts each. I LOVE Tae bo, but I will not be buying any more. Why? Because the workouts are starting to look too similar to the others. Eventually you will notice that you are doing the same moves but with a different background, participants, and music. The Tae bo team have tried to combat this by providing extras like inflatable Contacts, boxing and weighted gloves, resistance bands, and exercise balls. I only have the resistance bands but that has not stopped me from losing almost fifty pounds.
I highly recommend Tae bo. If you are worried that this workout will be too hard, remember that most Advanced workouts come with a Basic on the same DVD. The basic will prepare you for what is to come, so you can work up to your best slowly and safely. When times get tough, Billy will keep talking you through the burn and always reminds you of correct form. If you want to practice martial arts' moves in a fun way then Tae bo is for you.
Summary: Fun, inspirational, quick, and burns hundreds of calories in thirty minutes alone.
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