Friday, August 22, 2008

Dance Off the Inches: Hip Hop Party

THE WORKOUT: Dance Off the Inches: Hip Hop Party ($10.99 at Amazon.)


WHO CAN DO THIS: The steps are not terribly difficult and you don’t have to be in great shape but you’ll need the will to dance in order to get a real workout. A lot of the sweat is in the flava.

THE BREAKDOWN: Here she is again, Jennifer Galardi, reigning queen of the dance workout. (She’s also here and here.)

The Dance Off the Inches series includes a nice little Step Guide, which breaks down the 10 dance steps necessary to do the three 10-minute dance routines. The guide is a clever addition because it allows the workouts to keep moving at a good pace instead of slowing for teaching.

I’ve never needed the Step Guide on other DVDs from the series, but I did need help breaking down the Body Roll and a couple of other things in these routines. Some of these moves don’t come naturally to this very white girl. (OK—white middle-aged woman.) The guide definitely helped, now it’s just a matter of practice, practice, practice.

I’m a fan of Galardi and a fan of the series and this DVD is no exception. While I’m never going to give Beyonce any competition, I managed to hip and hop adequately. I did the first two workouts—Basic Hip Hop and Sexy Smooth Hip Hop—a few times before tackling World Hip Hop, which is the trickiest of the bunch. Galardi breaks everything down but she doesn’t baby you—you’ll have to catch on to some details yourself.

The dances use a lot of contractions and body rolls, which have a learning curve for me. Galardi looks like she’s dancing, I look like I’m convulsing. Still, as long as nobody’s watching, I have fun. A lot of the style is in the shoulders, too.

These moves allegedly work the abs, though I don’t feel like I’m getting all that much of a core workout. Maybe I’m not doing it right. I do feel my legs by putting a lot into lungy, squatty steps. Arms don’t get much of a workout, though they do help keep the heart rate up.

The set is decorated as a living room (a really big living room) and Galardi is assisted by your standard gang of girlies, none of whom is particularly hip-hop but whatever.

THE SWEAT FACTOR: Dance like you mean it and you will sweat.

BUT IS IT FUN? Yes it is. The dances are easy to learn but not so easy that they get boring quickly, and they really do feel like dancing. As always, better music would be nice but that’s just the way it is.

WHEN IT'S OVER: Depends on how many segments you do. Do one and you’ll have a nice sweat sheen. Do all three (plus warm-up and cool-down) and you can feel well worked out.

GEAR AND APPAREL: Workout shoes and a small amount of uncarpeted floor—the workout doesn’t cover a lot of ground.

FINAL WORD: A welcome new addition to my dance workout library.

Don't forget, you can help support this site if you buy your DVDs by clicking through the link above.

Digg my article

No comments: