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Denise Austin - Mat Workout Based on the Work of J.H. Pilates [VHS]
List Price: $14.98

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Product Description

Denise Austin's Mat Workout presents two 20-minute workouts emphasizing flexibility, core strength, balance, and relaxation. Workout 1 is Pilates-based, focusing on the core muscles of the abdominals and back. Pilates-based workouts are heavily founded on technique and awareness, so Austin takes time to explain and demonstrate neutral pelvis, shoulder stability, breathing technique, and the muscles you'll be working. Then she takes you through a challenging Pilates-based workout focusing on trunk stability, which translates to a killer ab workout, offering modifications for beginners.

Workout 2 includes both Pilates-based exercises and yoga postures, starting with the Sun Salutation and progressing to a variety of yoga poses that emphasize balance and flexibility and Pilates-based exercises that focus on core stability and strength.

This is a softer Denise--quiet voice, subdued pace, tranquil feeling--a nice change from the frenetic pace and unrelenting chatter of many of Austin's videos. You'll be surprised by how demanding this workout is, because of the core stability and balance challenges. --Joan Price

Customer Reviews:

  • An effective, fun, and strengthening workout!
    This is one of Denise's best tapes. It contains 2 segments: the first is pilates, the second is yoga. Both are very energizing and stimulating! If you're looking to loose a few pounds, firm up those abs, or just get more fit in general, then this is the video for you. Anyone (beginner or advanced) would bennefit from it!...more info
  • very disappointing
    These is one of the better of Denise Austins videos but I am sorry it will be the last one I purchase. She talks to fast and is difficult to follow. Also the volume on this video is too low. I have bought 2 of them so it is the video not my computer...more info
  • Aerobic Pilates
    Pilates is program that began as a physical therapy and rehabilitation program almost 100 years ago, although it is currently the "fitness rage". This video does demonstrate some of the positions and postures (there are over 200) but they are performed at high speed and the Pilates technique is never explained. Pilates should be performed in a deliberate, flowing, smooth way. The transitions in the video were too fast and choppy and reminded me of aerobics instead of yoga or ballet. A certified Pilates instructor will tell you that the exercises take some time to perfect and that form, not repetitions, is important. While it is based on the work of Joseph Pilates, this video is just a variation on Denise's other videos....more info
  • A great pilates workout
    Thank you Denise for introducing me so nicely to Pilates, I loved your workout, it's working wonders on my tummy and legs, I wish people would give your voice a break, I enjoyed doing the workout from beginning to end....more info
  • The WORST pilates/yoga video EVER!
    This has to be the worst fitness video I have ever seen. I am both a certified Yoga, Pilates, and Spinning instructor, as well as a Physical Therapist, and Austin's technique is dreadful. The Pilates portion is not that bad, but the yoga aspect is shameful. I would try selling my purchase, but I don't want anyone to see the horror! I think I will burn it instead!...more info
  • IT REALLY WORKS!
    I've been using this program for years, and I love it! You feel great when it's over....more info
  • I Hate to Say It -- Props to Denise
    I wanted to dislike this video.

    I was unfamiliar with Denise Austin when I bought it, but the minute she opened her mouth I felt an immediate, "Oh god, I've gotta listen to THAT for the next forty minutes!!" Her baby voice grates on me, I feel she's talking down to her audience, and I hate how she addresses the camera like she can see thru your TV screen ("Let me see those straight shoulders! Beautiful!")

    Nevermind all that, though. I gotta hand it to the lady, her first workout on this tape kicks .... Or, more appropriately, kicks ABS! It's why I gave this tape five stars, even though the second workout is [bad]. That's how good it is!

    Some reviewers indicate the first segment wasn't challenging enough. I suspect this is because they were not using their core so much as they were using momentum & their hip flexors to do the bulk of the work. Pilates is unique in that the more proficient you become at controlling your core, the harder you will work.

    I know this from experience, not just from all the pilates stuff I read. When I first started this tape, I'd had a few years of yoga under my belt and got a "three-star" workout from the first segment. Since then, I've mixed things up with running & lifting & cycling, too... I come back to this tape every few weeks, and it's amazing how much stronger my abs have become. *NEVER* have I ever done this workout without feeling it -- intensely!-- the next day. I've never been able to say that about a workout tape.

    Now, this progress didn't happen overnight and I'm pretty sure crosstraining has a lot to do with my strength gains, as well, but still -- this is one killer ab workout, when executed correctly. Best of all, it's also calming & gentle & even relaxing, in some ways. And, it's only 20 minutes long. Dammit, Denise, you done good.

    The second half of the tape, though, well, that's awful. No flow to the poses, underwhelming instruction, weird cuts to her demo'ing some postures on a rock, for some reason... blech. Stick w/ the first 20 minutes and this tape is still a value. Exercise fads may come & go but strong transverse abdominals will keep your frame supported for a lifetime!...more info

  • Great for alternate days
    This is my first experience w/Pilates. While I can't do all the moves, I feel very good after the work out. From day one I never was sore. This is a good program to use between harder workouts....more info
  • Great Introduction to Pilates: Hungry for More!
    After watching several infomercials on the benefits of Pilates I decided to try this out.

    I have done the first mat workout every day now for 2 weeks. I definately feel stronger, more flexible, and am starting to tighten up. The first workout is very relaxing, and yet it still makes my muscles a bit sore the next day. (Proof it is working!) I would not recommend the second workout, as it is very hard on my wrists, and the movements do not flow well together.

    Overall, I have enjoyed working out with Denise and would recommend this video to anyone wishing to get started on Pilates, and cannot afford the luxury of a personal trainer. I am now ready for something more advanced and am considering purchasing the Pilates Conditioning for Weight Loss DVD....more info

  • Great Workout!
    This is a great workout video for people who enjoy pilates and yoga. At first the video does not seem difficult, but the further you get into it, the more you can feel the workout. I enjoy it! It has helped me slim my tummy and problem areas and it's perfect because it is not long at all. I recommend this video to anyone who wants to start exercising and strengthen their core....more info
  • Good Pilates INSPIRED mat workout
    I give this DVD 4 stars because I am seeing a difference in my lower abs after using this DVD 4-5 times a week for 3 weeks. Through out my life until now, I have been slender, with a "poochy" lower abdomen. I focus more on workout one, which targets the lower abs. I practice workout 2 when I can't get to the gym, where I do the treadmill and free weights. I cannot stress more that this workout is a MAT WORKOUT BASED ON THE WORK OF JH PILATES. This is not not true Pilates, nor does it state anywhere on the DVD/Video that it is true Pilates. I knock off a star because Denise Austin does use some amusing lines over and over "...your spine is your lifeline... lengthen your legs... beautiful... etc..." which is a little bit cheesy, but tolerable. The workouts flow, and like in any exercise video, remember to do the exercises at your pace. Take the time to review the moves in the first segment that introduces you to some terms. A good idea is to watch the video too (I fast forwarded search on my DVD) to see what is expected of you. For the first time in my life (I'm 33 years old), I may be wearing a bikini this summer... in public!...more info
  • Excellent! I LOVE this CD!
    The first part of this CD is a great workout that I can do in 20 minutes, which is very important to me in the morning. I haven't tried the second part of the CD yet. I alternate this every other day with one of Denise Austin's other Pilates CD's - "Pilates For Every Body", also highly recommended. I especially like Denise's instruction...she's very much in tune with her body and health and it shows! I've read some mixed reviews about her personality, so I'd really like to add that I find her enthusiasm very genuine and inspiring! It's also encouraging that she's close to my own age (45) and is so physically fit. I think this is a super Pilates CD...I can feel results after only 3 sessions, and am much more aware of my posture during the day....more info
  • Post-Baby
    I have had two c-sections in the past three years. I bought this video during my second pregnancy. Anyone who has had a baby or had a c-section knows that your abs loosen up and lose some of their strength. I had never done Pilates before trying this video but had heard a lot of good things about it. I find this video very relaxing and challenging. I have now been doing this video three times a week in conjunction with other exercises. My abdominals are better than ever and I was able to tell a drastic difference in how my abdominals were responding with this video than I had after my first c-section where I just did traiditional crunches. I recommend this video to all my friends who are mommy's and they love it as well....more info
  • Relaxing & Effective
    This has been one of my favorite workouts for years and was my first introduction to Pilates. In the beginning, the workout was difficult for me to finish but in time, it strengthened my abs and lower back. The DVD is relaxing and effective, there is no annoying music and Denise keeps her talking to a minimum. After about 4 weeks of doing the workout 4-5 times a week, I noticed a marked improvement in my posture and shaved 3 inches from my waist. I was so impressed with the results, that I purchased the Windsor DVDs thinking that they would be even more effective, but they didn't come close. Some reviewers complain that Denise is not a certified Pilates instructor but you can't beat the results that this workout gives in just 20 minutes a day. I highly recommend this classic from Denise Austin. ...more info
  • 20mins To A Dancer's Body!
    I've been a fan of Denise Austin's work for over two years - working out with her has always been fun and motivating, and I am always happy with the results I get with her videos.
    This Pilates workout has certainly brought great results to my body - and it only took two weeks to get it. Denise puts together two segments into 20 minute workouts, with the first workout working mostly on the abdominals and lengthening the body to get a long, lean look. The second brings more of a challenging, more complex workout that combines Pilates and Yoga poses to create a more intense workout for the body.

    I found this workout to be totally effective and worth every penny, but here is a WARNING: I would NOT recommend this workout for beginners. You would need to be at least intermediate in Yoga, or another kind of flexible exercise. If you think you're pretty flexible, this workout might work for you. But I wouldn't recommend this to anyone who wasn't used to working out....more info

  • Denise should stick to aerobics
    I've done many many a pilates tape, and this one ranks low on the list. Denise appears to be a novice just hocking the latest trend in fitness rather than a true practitioner of pilates and/or yoga. In addition to a lopsided workout, her form is off and she leaves out important information - which could cause injury to a beginner.

    ......more info

  • New to yoga, but I like the tape.
    It seems like the biggest complaint about this video is that it's not a good Yoga workout. Well, I know nothing about yoga, but I enjoye this workout anyway. The poses stretched me out, and after only five days, my flexibility has improved. Now, maybe it's not traditional yoga in any sense of the word, but I can tell a difference after a very short period.

    I'm incredibly out of shape, and uncoordinated is a very mild ajective when applied to me. The second time through the workout, I managed to figure out what she was doing in every exercise/pose series. I still lose my balance on the balancing stick poses sometimes, but I can reach past my toes for the first time in a few years. That's quantifiable change.

    The second big complaint for the Dense Austin workout videos is her voice. She does talk the whole time. My first thought on that was "How can she talk when I'm practically panting" (like I said, I'm out of shape). I don't really mind her voice. I do like the continual commentary because it frees me up to concentarate on balance. Now that I've been through the workout several times, I can just use her words as a guide instead of having to watch the screen constantly.

    Overall, I highly recommend this dvd to beginners. When I get more yoga experience, maybe I'll come back and recommend it to other levels....more info

  • Like the simplicity
    I was looking for a video that was not hard to do in front of my tv. Denise Austin does this with some great stretching and firming up pilates just the speed for a 52 year old woman who doesn't get out much....more info
  • Wonderful DVD to add in your home-exercise collection!
    Oh my god! It's great! This is the item you must add in your home exercise collection, and you can use it over and over. I run 30 min everyday, and moderately exercise regular basis. I think this is a great for beginners - mid-range exercisers, like me. I use this DVD once in a week or so especially when I don't feel like running outside or not enough time to go to gym. It gives you a great mixture of core stability exercise and relaxation. Her voice tone is also wonderful to listen while you`re working hard....more info
  • annoying
    Denise has a high whispery and very annoying voice. Therefore, it makes it very hard for me to work out with her. Also, she moves a little too fast, with too few repetitions on the moderate exercises, and too many on the way too hard exercises. Not that good....more info
  • This is a mess....
    This was the first pilates DVD I bought and her instruction and technique was not very explanatory. For those who are serious about the correct posture, stance and breathing in pilates (especially breathing which done incorrectly will get you no where fast), look into Mari Windsor Pilates. She gives outstanding instruction, shows you in 3 D format what the correct form should be and instructs you on the all important breathing. www.windsorpilates.com...more info
  • My favorite fitness video ever
    I love this workout. I just bought my third copy- I started out with a VHS when it first came out and then upgraded to DVD when I bought my first DVD player in college. Somehow during my recent move my beloved Pilates DVD got lost so I had to go out and buy a 3rd copy. I have other videos I use, but this is by far my favorite.

    Anytime I feel like I have been slacking off in the fitness department I make a point to use this DVD every day and can usually see and feel results in 2 weeks.

    Additional equipment is not needed; I use a mat, but I have used it before without a mat. This is not an advanced Pilates workout so it is great for beginners. Even though I do some more advanced videos, I like to throw this one in rotation as well. I tend to suffer lower back pain at times, and I feel this video really helps with back pain more than any others I have tried. Highly recommended.


    ...more info
  • Great Pilates Exercises DVD. Like it a lot!
    I like this Pilate's dvd a lot this is great for me. I mix up my exercise routine not to get bored and do different exercises.

    This has great stretching and firming exercises done at a good pace for me. I like the music which is nice and calming.
    In all this is great for beginners like me and fills up my exercise routine which I change every time.

    In all a good basic Pilate's routine which is a plus that I added to my exercise regimen.
    Recommended....more info
  • Love Denise Austin
    This is my second copy of this DVD. I have many more Denise Austin's on VHS - time to swap for DVD. Denise has helped me lose a lot of weight - many times!...more info
  • Good, but basic
    This video consists of two workouts. The first is a very good, basic introduction to pilates. It gave me energy and I could definitely feel my abs working. The exercises made my lower abs work especially hard! This video is not difficult at all, just challenging. She offers modification tips for those of us who are not flexible enough. The second workout is a lot of yoga poses. It is very rushed and a little too fast for someone who has no experience with yoga. There are no explanations for the poses and she seems to think we all know these poses already. I suppose the more you practice, the better you will understand the poses, but I would suggest a different yoga video for beginners. Also Denise Austin's voice is a little annoying, but you'll get used to her calm, breathy voice....more info
  • Dissappointted
    I previously purchased Denise's Ultimate Fat Burner DVD, and I felt like I was in the best shape of my life. But I felt jumping all the time wasn't good for my knees, I then decided to get her Pilates DVD. Something more low-impact on my knees. The first time I tried the DVD; I felt that the DVD was working. After the first time though, it went all downhill with Denise because I didn't feel like I was working at all. I also felt that some of the moves where close to impossible for me to do on her second workout. If you want to get in shape, I strongly don't recommend this DVD....more info
  • If you can't take a class, it's better than nothing
    I bought this several years ago before ever taking a Pilates class. Now that I'm oversees with no Pilates around I brought this back out to use. I have found some errors in technique and doesn't work my core as well as the classes, but it's better than not doing Pilates at all. I'm sure there are better Pilates videos out there so keep looking. I saw a one star reviewer mention several better Pilates videos and I'll check those out for the future, you should too. Oh yeah, she does get a little annoying. She's very breathy when she talks and says supple way too many times for me. My husband laughed when I was doing the video because of it, he noticed those nuances as well....more info