|Classical Pilates Technique - The Complete Mat Workout Series English & Spanish (Modified Basic / Basic / Intermediate / Advanced / Super Advanced)
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Classical Pilates technique videos feature two of the most renowned Pilates professionals in the world, master instructor Bob Liekens and commentator Alycea Ungaro, who uphold the tradition and high ideals of Joseph Pilates original New York City Studio, which began during the 1920s. This DVD serves to preserve the original, classical method in the face of current challenges. Each exercise is performed flawlessly, in real-time, and in correct sequence. If you already have a foundation in the principles of this exercise method, then this is the DVD to buy to further your ability. It's not watered down, slowed down, or commercialized; it's just Pilates the way Joseph Pilates created it.While there's nothing flashy about this DVD, it is an invaluable tool (and the best) for those who are interested in more than the latest fad. Winner of the COMMUNICATOR AWARDS- 2003 AWARD OF DISTINCTION As a winner of this award Classical Pilates Inc. joins an exclusive list of video professionals who are recognized as the best within the industry.
- Cool & Classic
I didn't know anything about Pilates until a friend of mine said "take a Pilates class and get a video." I needed to lose a few pounds. It's good sometimes to have friends that shoot straight. This video isn't for people who are 'consumers' of exercise routines where someone holds your hand every step of the way. This video is for self-starters who want to learn a new workout method with substance. The modified basic workout was good so I could start learning the moves. The basic routine picks up speed. The intermediate level is a great challenge. ...more info
- Wonderful basic training guide
I found this DVD to be a great addition to my mat training. It is no nonsense, easy to follow and a great follow up guide to what I learned in certification. It's a tool that I can refer back to as a reference that is easy to follow and execute....more info
- No annoying cheerleaders!
I liked that the presentation is straight-forward, without any techno background music or rah-rah pep talks. As someone just beginning Pilates, I definitely appreciate that this DVD allows you to follow along with the instruction with a minimum of distractions.
Another reviewer recommended watching the moves a couple of times before actually trying them, which I did and found quite helpful. I definitely felt a change in the way my abs felt within 5 sessions. The moves are challenging enough that I can see myself using this DVD for more than a couple of months, as some of the exercises beyond intermediate are going to take some working up to....more info
- Good Traditional Pilates demonstration, Flawed video presentation
This is a self-described Mat Pilates DVD which stays true to the Pilates method, as created by Joseph Pilates. It gives an accurate breakdown and demonstration of Mat Pilates exercises from classically trained instructors/demonstrators. Like others, I can appreciate (to some extent) that this isn't sugar-coated Pilates aimed at being visually impressive, nor does it make outlandish claims or over-promise results such as rapid "weight-loss" or a "dancer's body".
At the same time however, the video production and overall sound quality isn't the best, and the instruction lacks clear audibility in many parts. The DVD is chaptered by exercise routines and the transition from one exercise to the next is choppy. I wouldn't say this video is for the absolute beginner, since the instructors do move through the exercises rather fast.
Lastly, the entire DVD is incredibly stale and boring. I don't see why just because it's "pure" Pilates it has to feel so serious and formal - like being in a cold, sterile hospital or office. There would be nothing disloyal or deviant in setting these classical Pilates routines to an uplifting, modernized, colorful environment and include some soothing-to-gently rhythmic background music. Therefore, I would consider this DVD (along with the rest in this series) to be more of an instructional tool for learning and observation than as a complete exercise routine which I can look forward to participating to. If you're looking for more Traditional Pilates DVDs that are much better produced and more enjoyale to watch, I would recommend Rael's Pilates or Romana's Pilates DVD series' over this.
I'd give this DVD 4 stars for the exercise demonstrations and 2 stars for video presentation.
Rating: Fair...more info
- very disappointed
I am a BASI certified Pilates instructor and like to do other's workouts at home. I found this video extremely disappointing- there is no warmup or even a suggestion thereof (very bad), the workouts are very short and way too fast-paced. Even if it were used as a cardio pilates workout, it's simply not long enough to get any cardio benefit and doing it so quickly defeats several of the important fundaments of Pilates. Also instructions are very limited, you have no idea when to switch sides. To top it off the scenery is low budget at best and the narrator's accent is irritating and distracting. That may be being too picky but sorry- it's just poor all the way around. I absloutely would swear all those rave reviews came from the producers because I can't possibly see how that many people can be that satisfied with this- don't buy it....more info
- Not worth it
I bought this DVD and the Shiva Rea yoga Shakti DVD together. This one sucked. If you are looking for a really great workout with almost the same teqnique, buy Shiva Rea yoga Shakti. It has a matrix on the DVD that lets you create your own personlized workout. I saw results from that after two weeks. This Classical pilates DVD is too short, too fast, bad intruction, and boring. I wish I had known. now I'm stuck with it....more info
- Pilates as a Classical Art Form
Pilates routines range from highly poetic to classic and structured. Finding the style you enjoy the most benefits your body, mind and spirit. If you enjoy a much more classic and structured routine, then you may enjoy the Classic Pilates Technique series.
To be quite honest, I find this difficult to exercise to because it moves much more rapidly than I prefer and instead of this being one flowing exercise routine, the exercises are divided into beginner, intermediate and advanced. There are even "Super Advanced" exercises like shoulder bridge with gymnastic flexibility required.
So, I can recommend this to instructors or to anyone interested in viewing the exercises. You won't find overly detailed instruction and the narrators accent can at time make it difficult to hear the instructions. There is no real instructor, just participants in top shape. They move rapidly through three different routines to show you what you can master and to "tease you" with moves like Teaser 4. I could actually do Teaser 4 this time, so I guess I must be moving towards the end of intermediate and if you are intermediate, this could give you new ideas for your exercise routines.
This is definitely not for beginners because there are no detailed instructions for the powerhouse or for breathing techniques. With an emphasis on technical form and function, this can appear dry and not overly aesthetically pleasing. There is just a mat and a curtain and the mood is very serious.
Some of the exercises you can view or try to master include:
Open Leg Rocker
Single Leg Kicks
Side Kick Series
While the emphasis is not on fun, this might be useful for training instructors who are serious about learning the correct form so they can pass along knowledge to their students. Since I've seen many exercise routines using Pilates exercises, I know there are a wide range of variations and creative ideas. The "round table" section includes a discussion of how we should stick with the exercises as they were created. I found this to be slightly too structured and it went against my creative artistic nature.
~The Rebecca Review
- Definitely for intermediate to advanced students
The product moves very quickly into demonstraring what a classical Pilates workout entails. It is helpful to see the end goal, however I believe other products are more appropriate for begginer's.
A thourough section on the basic elements of Pilates would have been helful...more info
- best pilates dvd on the market
For those of us who are looking for a pure, excellent, and VERY rigorous pilates workout, this is the best video on the market. It is totally devoid of the fluff that fills most other pilates videos that I have tried. Granted, it is a very bare-bones video -- but what it lacks in style, it makes up for in challenge and technique. Excellent for even advanced skills. ...more info
- Good form but need equipment
I really liked this DVD but I do not own the mat in the DVD and I tried to work through the modified basics without something sturdy to anchor my feet for one of the exercises. I don't have a heavy enough piece of furniture in the room where the TV lives (and we own ONE) in order to complete the exercises correctly. I suppose once you master the stretches and gain some strength, it gets easier. So have a heavy piece of furniture (or a friend and take turns) around to tuck your feet under for the needed support unless you have the money for the mat. It's the only reason I gave it 3 stars. I originally bought this DVD to take with me on my travels in case of inclement weather or lack of safe areas that prevents a good, long walk.
On the plus side, like others have commented, there is no chirpy, perky or annoying instructor with blah-blah music and her bouncy, equally chirpy girlfriends with white teeth. It's a simple, straightforward and to-the- point routine. Hit "pause", try the exercise and keep going. And do not advance to the next level until you and your body are comfortable with the routine. They state that in the disclaimer and they mean it! It will take time to do well so be patient if you're really out of shape or not terribly coordinated. Practice, practice, practice....more info
No professional should be without a copy - THE reference work for professionals ....not for 'home use' by non-professionals without previous extensive training with a professional....more info
- Great complement to Alycea Ungaro's book, "pilates body in motion"
I rented this viedo from Netflix because I had bought Alycea Ungaro's book, "pilates body in motion" and this DVD was recommended by a reviewer on Amazon because it closely followed the book. I wanted to see if it was worth buying. I have to say I am impressed at how closely the DVD does follow the book, which, by the way, is probably the best book to get if you could only buy one book on the subject. First the book: The book starts out with a concise introduction to Pilates principles and philosophy. It then offers complete routines from introductory to advanced levels. The best thing about the book is that each exercise is fully illustrated with photographs of every step with a brief explanation of how to derive maximum benefit from each step as you go through the motions. Now the video: There is a textual introduction as well which explains that this series of videos teaches Pilates as intended by the founder of the method himself. Then it offer you a menu selection of levels from modified basic to super advanced, which is one step beyond the advanced level in the book. Alycea Ungaro does the voice-over at the beginning of each level, commenting on what is to follow with some general advice. The exercises of each level follow in order with a demonstration by an accomplished pilates student of how to go through the various motions accompanied by pointers given by the narrator. Each exercise is show only once. This is not a workout video. Pilates is not anything like aerobicize and the like. It is a serious exercise activity that requires diligent study and attentive thoughtful practice. This DVD is a perfect complement to the above-mentioned book or to any good book on the subject. The best way this video can be used is to lie on the floor with the book and watch each exercise as it is done perfectly by an expert. Pause the video and try it yourself. Between the book and the video you should have no problem understanding exactly how to do each exercise correctly. My only complaint is that each exercise isn't given a video chapter of its own so you could easily repeat or loop the exercise. But on the whole I think this video is of excellent quality as is the book. It purports to teach Pilates as was intended by the founder of the method and it does succeed in doing so. The DVD is definitely worth buying and I think it should be a part of the collection of any serious student of the Pilates method....more info
- Great DVD, but not for first-timers
I spent 3 years taking a group pilates class, but lost most of my strength and form after 3 pregnancies. Trying to get to the gym with three kids is impossible, so I purchased this DVD to guide me back to my glory days. Had I not had years of experience in which to perfect these exercises, this video would had been a horrible introduction to Classical pilates. However, because I was trained and simply out of shape, it was a great refresher. I do find the pace a bit fast--yes this is part of the challenge--but I prefer to slow down a bit and focus on my form rather than be sloppy and race through it. My advice? If you're a beginner, don't buy this video unless you are in a class or taking other instruction. If you aren't a beginner, but aren't in top form either, watch the video in its entirety several times and determine what level matches your fitness level. Listen to the pointers (which might not be mentioned until repetition 4 of 5), make mental notes, and write down the workout sequence on a piece of paper. With this sheet as a guide, I can slow down when the exercises are tougher for me than they are for the instructor, but still keep the video on for inspiration and guidance. Yes, it's a bit dry. But the focus of classical pilates is your breath and form as you perform these exercises. Music, color, and flashy instructors would only be detractions. ...more info
- You Have to Earn a Workout
This video is the best. No illusions about quick fixes. Tradition is the backbone. With this video, I have to earn a good workout with real Pilates professionals. I've bought other Pilates videos. Most of them have fitness models and celebrities who learn Pilates on the fly. These guys are the real thing from the real tradition. Don't mistake imitations for this jewel of the Nile. ...more info
- Classical Pilates Technique- The Complete Mat Workout DVD
I found this to be a well organized DVD, with an excellent selection of authentic Pilates exercises for every level. Easy to follow. Moves at a brisk pace....more info
- A great classical pilates workout
This is classical pilates. Don't buy this video if you are trying to learn the technique from the video. Even the 'beginners' program moves to quickly to learn how to do it. I use it as a supplement to my classes and really like it....more info
- Great for Beginners
a good introduction to pilates, and nice sample exercises. however, you may want to invest in additional "exercise routine" dvd's. this one just teaches you the basics....more info
- Happy to give a good Pilates Review
Great thorough review of the mat series.It starts simple but progresses;I'm no where near as fit as the demonstrators- hopefully someday. Well Done....more info
- classical Pilates Technique
I really like this workout. They start slow and workup to advanced. I can feel the difference on just the basic. I highly recommend this to anyone....more info
- Well Done
This is a well done job on pilates. I took lessons first and then used this to practice the moves at home. Worked very well. Kind of boring and not much to look at but very accurate and true to pilates....more info
- Wonderful If You Know The Basics
This video is exactly what I was looking for. I've taken Mat Pilates at Community College for 2 years. This video is wonderful if you know the techniques as there is not much instruction before each move. It is set at a regular pace with no stops between each move so that is why you need to know what you are doing. If you've done Pilates and are looking for a video to whip through your moves this is definately this video to get. I'm really pleased with the purchase....more info
- You Get What You Pay For
This Pilates video costs more than any other, but the body conditioning lessons you get are worth every single penny. I don't need any other product because Classical Pilates shows a very basic (I guess pre-basic) workout, basic, intermediate, advanced and some exercises they call "super advanced." It's cool because there are men doing and teaching Pilates. I hesitated buying other Pilates videos because there were no men. The guy doing these workouts actually breaks a sweat. And there's a beautiful woman who demonstrates the intermediate level. I recommend it highly. ...more info
- Need equipment for this DVD
I am disappointed that the DVD assumes that you own a Reformer or other 8' padded mat with a foot strap. The product description did not say this, nor does it say that the exercises can be done without equiopment. This makes me lose confidence in the DVD....more info
I've been a student of Pilates for 3 years now. I was a competitive figure skater for 15 years and towards the end of my career I fell into the world of Pilates. I took a break from Pilates, but now I'm back. This DVD is amazing!!! I studied Pilates in a studio, mostly using aparatus. I'm now in the US Coast Guard and I've been "sentenced" to being station on Kodiak Island, Alaska. Needless to say there is NO STUDIOS in the entire state. This DVD moves through the excersizes a bit quick for my liking, but the content is great! I hate watching infomercials and watching the people in the Mari Winsor system doing the moves incorrectly. This DVD is TRUE, AUTHENTIC Pilates, made by people who have immense training and respect for Joseph Pilates and his Method. I also like how this DVD doesn't make false promises. Pilates is not a quick weight loss solution. It takes time. The famous Pilates saying goes... "In 10 sessions, you will feel a difference. In 20 sessions, you will see a difference. In 30 sessions you will have a whole new body." This is true. With dedicated work, you will transform your body. To anyone who wants to try Pilates... DO IT!!! Don't give up on it and stick with it. You will be so happy with the results! I hope everyone gets this DVD and enjoys their next body!!!...more info
- Perfect fit for me
I am so glad I found this DVD, I had tried several others, among them D.Austin's, but did not really enjoy myself - too much "I love myself, I am beautiful and good, and God give me strength - crap". I am a big fan of no nonsense, straightforward, clear excercing, without the psychological push. To some it is boring, for me it is the perfect fit: it allows me to fully concentrate on the individual excercises and challenge myself. I could watch my improvements from week to week/day to day and although slowly, but steadyly I became proud of what I could do.
This DVD starts out very easy and gradually builds up. It is fast, and it takes a bit of practice to get things right. But after 8 weeks of daily practice I am at the advanced level (not yet perfect however). I can do things and move in a way, I never imagined. And this is coming from someone, who was never flexible or practiced a lot of strength, I am just a passionate runner.
Furthermore, the individual sessions are short (starting at less than 10 min and slowly increasing to 20min), so I can easily do them twice a day, if I like to. My posture is so much better, one can see my abs, my legs are slimmer, I have never been as flexible in my life. All this came fairly effortless, especially compared to other Pilates DVDs....more info
- Not Brave Enough for Advanced
This is a great, no frills workout. The narrator does a beautiful job of describing each technique as the demonstration progresses without losing cadence. This is a quick workout (I think the intermediate is about 20 minutes), but highly effective. I love it. I'm not brave enough to go to the advanced level as the intermediate is a good workout for me. Whatever level you're at, you'll find a great workout here for you. Buy it. ...more info
- Fine but Not Spectacular
Though this DVD offers many levels, they are not offered alongside one another making the actual time spent performing the exercise at any given level very short. The background and scenery are uninteresting and uninspiring and the models performing the exercises are certainly quite fit but in no way friendly or encouraging. More importantly, there are no verbal cues during each exercise that relate to posturing or form, so if one were not experienced in pilates, it could be easy to injure onself. So, all in all, this dvd is fine but not spectacular....more info
- Question: Do you need props for this DVD?
I am buying the DVD and would like to know if you need props?!
- Unexpected format
This DVD is helpful if you are trying to master the specific moves of pilates and would like to learn some routines, but it is not the right DVD for anyone expecting 20-45 minutes of a pilates workout, beginning to end. There are no warmups or cool-downs and the sequences are not really grouped into individual workouts, but by skill level. Useful for learning the moves to do on your own time without the DVD....more info
- new at it
thought it to be very informative. like that the dvd goes from beginner to advanced all on one cd. i am happy with the purchase....more info
- 15 Minutes for Intermediate Workout
I've had this DVD for several months and enjoy the Intermediate Pilates workout. It only takes about 15 minutes, so there's no excuse for not fitting it in somewhere in the day. Since I have trouble sticking with exercise programs consistently for long periods of time, that's a real plus for me.
Don't worry about the speed of the routines. Hello, that's what the remote control is for on your DVD player! Just pause and rewind until you "get it" and once you can do all the exercises then you'll really appreciate the pace of the workouts because they don't waste your time. This is a bare-bones low-budget video production with no fancy graphics or music, no sexy instructors and the outfits worn by the instructors look like they are from the fifties. But I kind of like the narrator's European accent and sometimes stilted English phrasing, as it makes me think he knows what he's talking about -- he sure isn't a slick voice-over artist.
I plan to move into the Advanced workout level at some point, but I am still working on getting "perfect" position for all of the intermediate exercises. It seems I still have room to improve my technique and I'm in no rush, since I am happy to just be exercising regularly.
I notice my abdominal and back muscles are significantly stronger and healthier. Not only do I notice I'm more comfortable sitting at my desk during the day at work, but I have more endurance for recreational exercise, so-to-speak, that emphasizes the abs and back. That's a very nice reward from these workouts!
For $15 or so, I have gained a steady workout routine and stopped going to the Pilates class at my gym, where the instructor was not as organized and did not explain as well as they do on this DVD....more info
- Fabulous instructional/documentary, but horrible to use while actually practicing.
The commentary is interesting, factual and to the point. Watching the superbly fit and disciplined individuals performing each move and sequence is extremely informative and quite inspirational - as is learning about how to progress from basic, through the stages to super advanced.
Modified basic: about five and half minutes.
Basic: about four minutes.
Intermediate: about thirteen minutes.
Advanced: about twenty minutes.
Super advanced: about four and half minutes.
Background is a wooden floor in front of a heavy curtain. One instructor at a time, occasionally a second instructor is shown in an insert window doing a variation of the exercise. No music. Very clear audio. Very easy to use menu.
However, once I'd watched the DVD once or twice I wanted to use it to actually guide my at-home practice. Practically an impossibility! The voiceover is not a complete guide through each sequence, rather it only supplements actually looking at the screen, which is not something I want to have to do during a routine.
The problem is not that it's fast (it is, but that's part of a great challenge), or that the commentator doesn't count for you (yup, I can pick up the basic rhythm and count for myself). It's that he doesn't even guide you, which is absolutely what I need when I am practicing at home without a qualified instructor keeping an eye on me! Although I can keep to a consistent beat and count, staying perfectly in time with another is impossible without periodic guidance (even top orchestras need a conductor!) You're never quite sure if you've managed to keep count at exactly the same speed as the on-screen exerciser and therefore if it's time to change sides or move on to the next exercise. And if you take a moment to look at the screen, because of the speed and concentration required it's too easy to end up missing three out of the five repetitions and find yourself scrambling to catch up.
All of which is a shame because the sequences are challenging, effective and really quite fun.
I guess some may say that once I've practiced the DVD a few times the routine will be practically memorised and therefore none of the above will be a problem. Maybe, but I have quite a few yoga and Pilates DVDs, which I do in rotation so some time can pass before I do any particular one again - meaning it's hard to remember the exact routine. ...more info
- not bad
not bad for the price. it is slow but fast enough tpo keep you at a nice pace. the only problem is it is like watching an old black and white british spy movie where you never discover the plot line until you fell asleep and all the charactors look the same because it is in black and white....more info
- Excellent Pilates Overview!!! Really Enjoy!
While I was browsing the previous reviews in preparation to purchase this DVD, I really just wanted to know what the contents were. A lot of reviewers would get up to the Intermediate part and then stop and I found that to be frustrating. Overall, it looked like a worthwhile DVD so I purchased it anyways. I watched each level - the Modified Basic, Basic, Intermediate, Advanced, and Super Advanced. Here are the specs for each:
Modified Basic: Actual exercise time is about 5 min. 8 exercises are gone over. They are The Hundred, Roll Down, Roll Up, Single Leg Circles, Rolling Like a Ball, Single Leg Stretch, Double Leg Stretch, and Spine Stretch Forward.
Basic: Actual exercise time is about 4 min (but the exercises are slightly harder than the Modified Basic program). The exercises gone over are The Hundred, Roll Up, Single Leg Circles, Rolling Like a Ball, Single Leg Stretch, Double Leg Stretch, Spine Stretch Forward.
Intermediate: Actual exercise time is about 13 min. 20 exercises are gone through. They are The Hundred, Roll Up, Single leg Circles, Rolling Like a Ball, Single Leg Stretch, Double Leg Stretch, Single Straight leg Stretch, Double Straight Leg Stretch, Criss Cross, Spine Stretch Forward, Open Leg Rocker, Corkscrew, Saw, Neck Roll, Single Leg Kicks, Double Leg Kicks, Neck Pull, Side Kick Series, Teaser, Seal.
Advanced: Actual exercise time is about 20 min. 35 exercises are gone through. They are The Hundred, Roll Up, Roll Over, Single Leg Circles, Rolling Like a Ball, Single Leg Stretch, Double Leg Stretch, Single Straight Leg Stretch, Double Straight Leg Stretch, Criss Cross, Spine Stretch Forward, Open Leg Rocker, Corkscrew, Saw, Swan, Single Leg Kicks, Double Leg Kicks, Neck Pull, High Scissors, High Bicycle, Shoulder Bridge, Spine Twist, jack Knife, Side Kick Series, Teaser Series, Hip Circles, Swimming, Leg Pull Down, Leg Pull Up, Kneeling Side Kicks, Side Bends (or Mermaid), Star (Super Advanced), Boomerang, Seal, Push Ups.
Super Advanced: Actual exercise time is about 4 min. There are 6 total exercises gone over. I think the main purpose of this section of the DVD is to add on to the Advanced workout when you feel like you are able to do even more. I'm not going to name the exercises they go over here because they don't provide a list of them before the program and I don't want to watch it again.
All the exercise names listed above, are what the "Classical Pilates Technique" DVD has named them -- to avoid any plagarism.
Each program has a small (maybe 1 minute) talking introduction before the actual workout begins. I agree that this DVD is mainly an instructional one. I think the idea is that you will use it to supplement a pilates class, or that you will use it in hopes that, one day, you will be able to go through the exercises on your own; without the help of the DVD. In this respect, the DVD is awesome. It is exactly what I was looking for.
I also would like to add, that despite the runtime of the programs, the exercises themselves are quite difficult--especially when done right; you will sweat! Pilates focuses mainly on your core muscles, thus it is fantastic for toning your abs.
- quick and to the point
I don't really have much to compare this dvd to since I have only seen 2 Pilate videos.
Although the moves are the same with both videos that I've seen, this one doesn't have alot of talking and wasting of my time. It takes the lady in the other Pilates video I've seen 15-20min to do what it takes the man 5 minutes to do in Classical Pilates.
I am still doing the Basic and I am getting better. I still need to work on the breathing techniques before I go onto the Intermediate. I can't see myself ever doing the Super Advanced though! I just don't know if it's natural to be able to bend like that! ha ha...more info
- Classical Pilates technique dvd - Peter Fiasca
This is a excellent pilates dvd. It is very easy to follow. I felt results in my abs and thighs in a week. I never used the pilates excersise system before, but I found this exercise sytem on the dvd easy to follow and the directions were coherent and in a good pace. The beginer mat was perfect for me, because I just started pilates. I re-viewed the whole pilates dvd, and it is broken down in segments from beginner to advanced. This is worth the money, and it is a very good pilates dvd and you will feel and see the results in weeks, depending how often you excersise....more info
- Exactly what I was looking for
I am currently taking Pilates classes once a week, so I am very familiar with the moves. I would like to take lessons several times a week, but cost prevents me. I have been searching for a DVD I can use to assist me in-between my lessons. This DVD is a very good example of a pure Pilates mat class. The sections are short because the moves are done one right after the other. That is the ultimate goal.
What I like best is that advanced moves are demonstrated. What better motivator than to see what is possible?
If you are interested in Pilates, working with a certified instructor is essential. There are so many nuances to the movements, no DVD will be able to substitute for hands-on assistance. I purchased this one to remind me of the order and to give me a visual guide to show me if feet are flexed, arms are by my side, etc.
By working out on my own, I am able to progress with my instructor that much faster, which makes me very happy. Pilates practiced faithfully will guarantee you a very flat and very firm stomach. If you think it is too easy, just wait. It gets harder as you progress. The rewards are worth every minute.
If you are looking for PURE Pilates, and not a modern interpretation/twist/mutation, than this DVD is for you. The price is less than one mat class at most studios!!!...more info
- Follow the order and this program won't be too fast
I am not in an area where pilates instruction is offered. I have tried other pilates DVDs and found them to be too difficult. This program, though not 'fancy,' is thorough, well-organized and easy to understand.
I am still only at the basic modified work-out but do not believe the program is too fast. It may seem too fast if you jump in at the more advanced levels without going through the first level at least once.
The voice-over instruction is clear and well-timed with the exercises. I didn't find him hard to understand at all.
If you're interested in a thorough instruction in pilates, this is the DVD for you!...more info
- Glad I read the reviews!
All the glowing reviews made my decision to buy this DVD, and boy, am I glad! The only other experience I've had with Pilates is the Winsor, but was very frustrated at how long and drawn out her workout was. Not this one! When I finish my -short- workout from this DVD, I feel the results without wasting an extra 30 minutes. Of course, since I had done the Winsor DVD, and she explains slowly and carefully, I already had a basic grasp on doing the poses. But once you have the hang of it, you don't really feel like listening to the explanations, you just want to work out!...more info
- Decent workout - poor narrative & sound
I was looking for an intermediate to advanced Pilates DVD and found this one. It is good in that is contains workouts for many different levels from beginning basic to super advanced. However, the man narrating the video does not cue the next exercise appropriately which causes you to stop focusing and check the TV screen repeatedly to see what exercise they are doing. I end up doing both the Basic and Intermediate workout for an Intermediate workout - still doesn't seem enough, but when I try the Advanced workout, it is just too much, poorly cued and way too fast. It might invite injury....more info
- Wonderful Workout
I got this DVD for the Advanced workout as I was ready to try something other than the Winsor Advanced Body Slimming DVD I had been using for over a year (and which I also like). The Classic Pilates Technique is wonderful. At the Advanced level there is helpful cuing both verbally and on screen. There is also a wonderful flow to the exercises, much better than with the Winsor DVD. While I cannot speak the other workouts, I would certainly recommend this DVD for anyone familiar with Pilates trying to get a complete and traditional Pilates workout....more info
- Too fast
Classic pilates is structured by fluidity of movement, this video is too fast, not spending enough time on correct body placement....more info
- fast service --great packaging
fast service --great packaging
no complaints!...more info
- THIS IS NOT FOR A BEGINNER
I have been practicing beginner pilates 3-4 times a week for 2 months. I purchased this dvd to get more out of the classical pilates techniques. The workouts are short! This not for a beginner, it is very fast paced.
I found this on a site, and I couldn't state it better myself, it tells you exactly what this dvd is about, it is by Christian Perring, PHD:
Classical Pilates Technique is a 75 minute DVD. It has a 2-minute introduction, and there is a 17-minute discussion of the benefits of Pilates with 3 people, Bob Liekens, Alycea Ungaro and Peter Fiasca. The rest of the DVD is divided up into five sections introducing different levels of Pilates Mat Workouts. These are
Modified Basic (6 minutes)
Basic (4 minutes)
Intermediate (13 minutes)
Advanced (21 minutes)
Super Advanced (4 minutes)
The mat used is not just the regular Pilates mat (which is thicker than a yoga mat) but rather a T-shaped mat with a couple of extra features. This mat is available from Grantz-Pilates online, where they call it the "low mat." Other equipment that gets used includes a short pole just to keep the hands parallel when doing sit ups, and a foot loop attached to the top of the mat for doing sit ups. However, it is possible to do these exercises using a couple of yoga mats, one on top of another, and improvising a way to hold your feet still when doing the sit ups -- such as putting your feet under your bed.
The workouts are demonstrated by Peter Fiasca, Junghee Kallander, and Jamie Trout. The DVD has very simple production, with a mat on a wooden floor with a curtain in the background. The camera shows the instructor from a couple of angles, tending to hold the shot for about half a minute before switching to the other angle. Bob Liekens gives instructions about how to do the exercises in a voice over. For each different exercise, the name of the exercise appears on the screen, along with the number of repetitions that should be used. So it is a very plain and static production. There are no special DVD features used, except dividing the different parts into chapters so it is possible to select which chapter you want to view.
This is not a particularly easy DVD to use if you are looking to start out with Pilates. The pace is fast, and the switches between one exercise and the next is rapid. If you want to watch carefully and get the movements exactly right -- and in Classical Pilates there's great emphasis on being precisely right in the movement -- then you will need to use the pause button on your DVD remote quite often, and you will need to watch the exercises carefully first. It might be more suited to people who have gone to a few Pilates classes already and need a reminder about how to do the exercises and what order to do them in.
The individual workouts are short: even the advanced one is only 21 minutes, and the most elementary one is just 6 minutes. The exercises will be challenging for people who are not used to them and who are not already strong and flexible, and they are probably very beneficial so long as they are done carefully so as to avoid injury. However, most people who go to a Pilates class will be used to a longer workout -- 30 or 45 minutes is quite standard. It is not very clear how to use this DVD to provide such a workout.
So overall, some people may find this a useful DVD if they want what it provides, but for those who are looking for a more general guide to doing Pilates, they would be better off looking elsewhere.
An excellent beginner classic pilates dvd to start with is by Alan Menezes, it may be older, but everything is so clearly and fully explained
from the B-Line, right down to proper breathing, you couldn't ask for a better, beginning, intermediate, or advanced pilates workouts. He is fantastic. You will get proper and complete training and it cost me a mere dollar. Get one and see if it is not the most thorough dvd on pilates you have come across. Another great one is, Heart of Pilates, put out by PBS, it is fantastic, it comes in a 3 dvd set as well, bit more, but fabulous. If you want complete, nothing left out, proper breathing and alignment, these two are fantastic. Try Ebay for the Heart of Pilates, they have it for a very good price.
Good luck!...more info
- Not bad, but there is room for improvement
Overall, this is a pretty good instructional video. The routines are broken out pretty well, with a logical progression and the voice-over giving adequate instruciton on each exercise. The models/performers/instructors were clearly competent in there performance of the exercises, and the the costumes and backgrounds were not distracting (this is a good thing and far too rare). How closely this follows J. Pilates vision can be argued forever, but it follows Mr. Pilates written descriptions of the exercises very closely. Like I said, a good, usable workout video.
Things for improvement:
-It needs a seperate section descibing the exercises one at a time, not just instructional voice-overs on the routines. It's a DVD, if someone doesn't need the detailed instruction they can just skip it!
-The alternate (harder) variations to the exercises show with the advanced routine could have been put into a seperate sequence. As presented, as smaller window in the corner of the screen, this was pretty distracting. Again, it's a DVD, take advantage of what the technology offers!
-It's probably true to Mr. Pilates intent and vision, but the jump in length and intensity between the beginner and intermediate workouts could be very daunting (or discouraging) to a novice, or someone who has a long ways to go in their physical conditioning. Another step tucked in there would probably benefit a lot of folks using this tape.
Yes, I gave more space to criticism than to praise, but note that I gave it four stars. Overall, it is pretty good, and I would recommend it to most folks considering pilates as fitness program....more info
- Fab abs
If you're looking for an entertaining pilates dvd with nice music and beautiful people, this isn't it. If you want an incredibly comprehensive, albeit rapid, treatment of classic pilates, ranked by level, then this is for you. The poses are described both visually and with narration so that, by starting with basic, and working your way through, you can master each pose. If you are not a beginner, the series are accessible via a menu, so that you don't have to forward through the beginner routines. A warning for those moving through the levels of the dvd: there is a big difference from one level to the next. So even if you've been doing the "intermediate" section just fine for some time, be prepared to find the "advanced" level quite a bit more challenging.
This dvd is excellent for pilates students of all levels who want a basic, cut-and-dried workout without any bells and whistles. A few weeks of practice, and you will notice an impressive difference in your core strength and general balance. And if you're not middle-aged like me, you might just end up with six-pack abs....more info
- Among The Best
This is the 6th Pilates DVD that I've bought this year. Each DVD has something to offer. But if someone asked me to recommend a Pilates DVD to a new student (or teacher) this is the one. I'm far from being an athlete but I try to keep in shape.
I like this DVD because you can progress with the basic through intermediate and advanced levels. I practice nearly every day. And it's not hard on your body. The exercises are smooth and flowing, yet they are all very challenging. After practicing mat workouts watching other DVDs for about 6 months, I tried this one. Eureka! This DVD is straight from disciples of the master Joseph Pilates himself.
I love the traditional intermediate workout and have been happy to complete it in about 15 minutes. I finish feeling refreshed and ready for anything. This DVD doesn't stop for explanations, or to show you some new fangled exercises that aren't Pilates. I like to keep moving and work my muscles. When you're as busy as I am, you make sure to have a specific time frame to exercise. This workout gives me time and energy live well and enjoy all the good things in life. I've tried a few of the exercises in the "Advanced" workout. These exercises keep my body interested in learning more Pilates.
This DVD has several workouts in one product, so it's definitely a good deal. The authors suggest taking Pilates lessons. Sometime I will. Until then I know I'm in good hands with this DVD. It's among the best DVDs I've purchased----ever.
There are no flashy costumes. There are no swimsuit models. There is no tricky editing. There are no mountain-top panaramic views. All you have is expert instruction and good traditional Pilates. It's all I want....more info
- Good but lacking explanations
This was a good basic Pilates mat workout, but there are not many instructions or explanations of positions or technique. If you aren't already familiar with Pilates, it could be hard to follow. The set-up to have different workouts for each level is well done, and when the narrator gives instructions it is helpful. Also, it is really convenient because each workout is focused and the intermediate and advanced levels take around 15-20 minutes. Overall, it is a good video and I would recommend it. ...more info
- A Regular Routine for Me
I regularly use the DVD Pilates program. It is quick and easy to follow. I worked my way up gradually to the intermediate and advanced programs, depending on how much of a workout I want. People ask me what I do to stay in such great shape. I attribute my core strength, muscle definition, and flexibility primarily to this program. I keeps me injury free and complements my modest running routine. I am a wife, mother of two young children, and work full time. This is much easier than going to the gym or to the Yoga studio. I am grateful I found this DVD. Just 15-20 minutes several days a week and significant results....more info
- for pros only
I've been taking Pilates classes for about 6 months and keep looking for a good video... careful, interesting, not overly easy or impossibly difficult. This isn't it. I think it is really designed for people who are at an expert level....more info
- Beginner - Advanced DVD
I wrote a review last year and just wanted to follow up because this DVD has helped me a great deal. I'm just a beginner. When I first read reviews, I was worried by those who said this dvd offered little instruction and was a poor choice for beginners. After I finally decided to buy this dvd, I'm glad I did. Perhaps this dvd is not good for a "fitness" beginner, but if you're in decent shape, have the discipline for routine exercise, and looking for a challenge, the dvd is perfectly fine for you as a "pilates" beginner.
If you're in good shape and already have a strong exercise regimen that includes abdominal work, weight lifting, and cardio, the modified basic and basic workout on this dvd will merely serve as a useful introduction. In themselves, they are way too short to break a sweat and the moves are modified to be easy. Still, the they provide useful insight into pilates moves and form, while also showing how one would modify a move if it is too hard. After watching them once, I was able to go through the two basic workouts with ease. The intermediate workout presented a true starting point. After watching it once and going through the workout once with the "pause" button handy, I was able to insert the intermediate workout into my daily routine. Thus, for a beginner to pilates, if you take the time to study the dvd first, you should have no problem. Also, you can easily add to the simpler routine--for example, the final push up exercise in the advanced routine can be easily added to the end of the intermediate routine.
There have been many comments about the lack of instruction, counting, and breathing cues. I believe there is plenty of instruction by the narrator, and if the move feels smooth and in control, it's good enough for me. Counting is no big deal either since the reps and sets are marked on the screen, and you shouldn't be thinking so hard about counting anyway. Finally, breathing should come naturally in the movement and narrator provides plenty of cues. With some practice, you'll be able to discover your own smooth breathing rhythm for the workout. The intermediate workout is only a little more than 10 minutes, so you can fit it in easily during a free time slot during the day (for me, in the morning before work) while maintaining your normal exercise schedule.
After practicing the intermediate workout daily for a few weeks, you'll likely be able to start studying and practicing the advanced workout, which is the true value of the dvd. It's a nice, challenging routine which is a little more than 20 minutes. The workout moves smoothly through each exercise with great transitions. While some moves are very difficult at first, some practice and also modification based on previous levels will let you flow through the workout. I find the large jumps in difficulty between the levels motivational: the difficulty challenges the user to practice and improve, and keeps the dvd from becoming boring.
While the dvd lacks pastel colors, it's great as an instructional dvd to guide the user to eventually become independent in performing their pilates workout. As a final note, pass on the Winsor for sure. A friend had the Winsor 3 dvd workout set and I tried the 50 minute accelerated body sculpting workout. It's somewhat similar to the advanced workout offered in classical pilates dvd, but the workout is so slow and the breaks between exercises are very long. It's a little difficult not to daydream, nap, or even catch a cold between exercises in the Winsor workout. I'm exaggerating a bit, but it truly feels like you perform an exercise for 3 minutes, and listen to Winsor talk for three minutes...until you reach 50 minutes. Since focus is so important in pilates, I don't understand how one can do the Winsor series. Pick Classical Pilates Technique over Winsor any day. I can't judge other pilates dvd's since I haven't tried them, but I'm this dvd is probably your best bet.
- PURE PILATES!
This DVD is very easy to follow. Pilates are done in their most purest form. No gimmicks, no yoga, just straight-up pilates! I own several "pilates" DVDs and this one is THE best....more info
- A Mistake to Buy
I bought this DVD being so excited about continuing my Pilates Path. Dont buy this DVD. The moves are not varied, its boring, and its fast. I am already planning on returing it- and i got it 6 hours ago. ...more info
- best in the market!
I have been doing Pilates since 1983 and have been teaching it since 1989. this video (DVD) and the whole Classical Pilates series is the best out there, by far!!! it shows traditional Pilates, with great demos and very detailed sequences. from basics to super advanced. it is not a follow along video, but a must have to anyone seriously interested in Pilates....more info
- Excellent Educational Resource
This DVD (along with all the Classical Pilates dvds) is a really good source for learning the technique and sequence of the classical pilates repertoire. When I started learning pilates I did DVDs which you would work out with. After I while I wanted to learn more and start working out on my own (without a video), so I ordered this DVD, along with Pilates book "Return to Life Through Contrology". As many reviewers have said, the pace of this video is too quick to really exercise w/ it. However, I knew that from reading reviews before I ordered it, so I had no issue with it. Classical Pilates is basically pilates exactly as Joe Pilates taught it. This includes the technique for performing each individual exercise (various other methods of pilates make small - or sometimes not so small - changes to the way the moves are performed), the number of reps for each move, and the order of the moves.
I basically watched the video to study the moves (along w/ reading Pilates's book), then would practice them later on my own. The video was good for this purpose - the name of each exercise and the prescribed number of reps is displayed on the screen as the exercises are done, which made it easy for me to write it down to study later. The video also goes through workouts of various levels, from beginner all the way to advanced. The cueing (done by pilates expert Bob Liekens) is very good. The technique of the demonstrators is also beautiful, and i enjoy watching them workout simply to appreciate their skills as practitioners.
I am actually a certified pilates teacher now (not classical style), and I really think having a knowledge of classical technique has made me a stronger practitioner and given me a greater appreciation for my own training (in terms of understanding the reasons for deviations from pilates original vision). I love the sequencing of the classical workouts (I find it to be the most athletic), although the unchangeable order can get a little stagnant after a while.
Overall, I think a knowledge of the classical repertoire is a must for any serious pilates student, and this DVD is the best source I've found for studying the pure classical pilates matwork. Enjoy!
- Great Classical DVDs.
These are great if you want the TRADITIONAL (hence, 'classical) method taught and developed by Pilates himself. They are meant to be regimented. If you're looking for more modified, new-agey versions, this might not be for you....more info
- One Of The Best Pilates DVDs Out There
I've done most of the popular Pilates DVDs out there. Windsor...too slow and not challenging enough. Stott...challenging and a GREAT workout, but slow and boring. This DVD is definitely meant for those who understand Pilates and how your body is supposed to work with it. It is a fast paced workout, but its very effective if you are doing it correctly. If I need a really quick workout, the Intermediate workout is about 15 minutes long and it is sooooo beneficial. I end up more sweaty at the end of the 15 min then if I went for a 45 min walk. So the DVD is great but you do have to be familiar with the fundamentals of Pilates techniques. I recommend it for any Pilates lover!...more info
- Exercise for a Lifetime
I've been doing Pilates for many years and take some lessons when I can. There aren't many teachers near where I live. The upshot is I take Pilates mat classes and learn from videos. Someone told me to get this DVD because it shows the right way to practice with the right exercises. I enjoy this video because the people are strong and flexible and they are really intelligent. I have gown with this video because they show every level from modified basic - advanced and super advanced! I've bought other videos that are the same price but they only show a single workout. Classical Pilates does a very good job. ...more info
There are so many new pilates plus blends of fitness DVDs available now. I sometimes get caught up in the hunger to get the latest but I always go back to the classics.
This is great because it is many levels, though I do feel you should have some experience as a beginner. I am an experienced exerciser and really have to concentrate to make the exercise feel how it is meant to.
I do think, if you are serious about pilates you should take a couple live classes to be sure you are doing it right.
Then get this one. It is among the best of the pilates DVDs available....more info
- No Pain + Flow = Great Feeling
Back in the 1980s I did high impact aerobics to sweat and feel good. Today I use Pilates because it put much less pressure on my joints. Time is marching on and it's better for me to be kinder to my body. Pilates exercise combines well with swimming and tennis. The flow of each exercise reminds me of the flow with swimming and tennis. I like this DVD....more info
- Not for the frivolous
This is definitely the no-frills version of pilates: no bottle blonde with bleached teeth and shiny lycra, no boppy music, no fancy backdrop.
The demonstrators are very impressive and it has a clear, succinct voice-over. I have only tried the intermediate level work-out and although it is only about 15 minutes long, I found it very challenging because of the fast pace....more info
- Perfect intro to Pilates
I've been doing this DVD on-and-off for years. I think it is the most perfect introduction to the Pilates technique that there is. It is not intimidating in the least, and there is a level for everyone depending on the level of fitness and flexibility.
I did the Beginner section for about 3 months, then I moved up and now I am on Intermediate. I feel like a complete goddess when I've finished the 20-minute workout. The 20 minutes goes by in a flash, too, so don't be intimidated. It's wonderful....more info
- Such a shame
It's such a shame that such a good idea and purpose goes to waste because of
conservatism and bad taste. I've been practising Pilates for three years and felt right from the start that this was something I will keep on doing for the rest of my life as a part of my workout regimen. I was really excited to discover a dvd made by people connected to Joseph Pilates himself as I was sure that they must be the greatest teachers. Now I'm sure that in an actual Pilates studio these people would be great! But it takes more when you want to reach out to an audience through a dvd. You'll need to motivate your pupils in another way. And by the way.. what's wrong with making it fun? Does it have to feel like your in Poland back in 1953? These people are clearly not ok with the popularity that Pilates has gained over the last couple of years and are clearly trying to make a statement
against it. Question is, who stands to gain from it? (No one)
Buy this dvd if you're curious about what Pilates used to be.
Don't buy it if you want a fun inspiring workout to look forward to again and again.
/Hooked on Pilates...more info
- hate it
what a waste of money. it's so 80's and not at all fun to follow. i'm sticking to denise austin from now on. ...more info
- Excellent directed workout
This DVD has several things going for it. The best is that it has different levels. As an I-can-do-anything guy, I naturally started out at the advanced level for a few days. But I was doing things with such poor form that I dropped down to the intermediate for a few days, and then finally to the basic level. After a few weeks with the basic level I went back to the intermediate level and it was a struggle to make it through the first few times, and didn't actually complete a couple of sets of the intermediate exercises. But then I ran into the idea that I only had only the time allotted during the exercise to get it done or the exercise wouldn't get done and with that thinking I was able to push through the pain. But of course I had been building up my abs doing the exercises and so my successful driving myself through the pain could also be attributed to that. I have not yet returned to the advanced, but I will after another month I suppose.
I use the DVD about five times a week and it is a great way to start the day. I use a firm black roll-up mat that is 3/8" thick and it is completely adequate for all the exercises.
To do a level you just put the DVD in and forward it to your level (intermediate is track 5, advanced is 6) and after about 30 seconds of talk while you get ready to start it begins. And the pace is good and 20 minutes later (if you are doing the intermediate) you are done. And when I am done I feel great, not tired at all, but rather full of energy. This is not to say that I don't feel significantly challenged during the exercises, because I am challenged.
I love it!
- Pilates Is One Of My Favorite Activities
I've tried many styles and schools of Pilates: Stott and PhysicalMind and and Polestar and Alan Herdman and Rael Isacowicz and Jullian Littleford and Power Pilates and Peak Pilates and West Coast and Yogalates and several more. They are all different! Each style can be beneficial.
This DVD program crosscuts through all of these styles by getting THE ESSENCE of Pilates BEFORE these different styles evolved. There's no denying it. This DVD program shows Pilates as it was created long before different styles cropped up.
I love it!
Some people prefer to go slowly to examine each nuance. Some people prefer to have an instructor explain each detail. Some people prefer an analytical physical therapy style of Pilates. Some people prefer creative choreography Pilates. Some people like to experience different 'improvements' to Pilates.
Personally, I enjoy my Pilates 'straight up' with pre-basic and basic exercises when I'm moving slowly in the morning, and intermediate when I'm ready to get a more vigorous workout.
The instruction on this DVD is strong and articulate. I love the way it describes what I should be feeling and considering. The man who does the voice instruction has a nice accent. He finds a way to help your imagination and body work together in harmony and understanding.
I always recommend this program to friends and family and other students of Pilates. Go with the flow!...more info
- Good for Sports
I play soccer and someone told me to try Pilates. I like this video because there's a guy doing some of the workouts. The dude is strong and flexible. He breaks a sweat. The announcer is strong. It took me a while to get the hang of some exercises. But Pilates has helped me in sports....more info
- a big disappointment!
I found this dvd to be a great disappointment! I hated the format in which they presented the exercises. I am a beginner who can pick up on the routines fairly quick, but this program went from one exercise to another without showing you the proper form first to avoid injurying oneself. As you advance to more difficult levels(especially the advanced), they add more moves without always giving proper form and how one should breathe. I even had difficult time trying to figure how many repetition or sets the demonstrator was doing. It is too fast paced and difficult to follow. I had to keep rewinding over and over until I finally got frustrated. The video quality seemed cheaply done also. I started out doing pilates with Pilates for Dummies first to familiarize myself as recommended by one of the reviewers. I thought this instructional dvd was much better quality and the instructions were given in concise and clear manner as instructional videos are suppose to do. The instructor, Michelle, was wonderful and very detailed so that you avoid injuries. She even counts for you so that you're doing the correct amount of repetition and can concentrate on the moves and form instead. Now I hope I can find the advanced level from the people who produced Pilates for Dummies. ...more info
- No frills Pilates workout!
As other reviews have stated, this DVD is truly a workout, ranging from Beginner to Super Advanced. The moves are done very fast, and it will be difficult for beginners to keep up with at first. I recommend getting the book, Pilates: Body in Motion, by Alycia (sp?) Ungaro. This book details the fine points of how to do each position correctly, because there is very little dialogue on this DVD. (Ungaro also participates in a discussion about Pilates in one section of this video.)
However, once you get the hang of it, this is a great video, and they do their best to reflect Joseph Pilates' original intentions for his method. Very enjoyable!...more info
- REAL Pilates
This is a terrific workout. Instructions are clear and complete. If you're new to Pilates, you will probably need to pause the DVD frequently until you become familiar with the moves and the proper breathing and form. Joseph Pilates believed that you should be able to perform an entire workout, including your shower, in 45 minutes or less.
There are so many so-called Pilates workouts these days, but the exercises on this DVD are the real thing. Only exercises created by Joseph Pilates himself can truly be called Pilates. There are lots of Pilates inspired moves, but they are NOT Pilates. The aspect of Pilates I love is that there is always room to improve. Once you master the basics of the moves, concentrate on form. I aspire to be as graceful and strong and balanced as the performers on this DVD....more info
- Good for what it is
*5 sections with increasing "difficulty" (explained more below)
*Large variety of moves
*Moves are in classical style, concentrating on the technique that Joseph Pilates intended, which are theoretically better for your body
Bad(?) points (a.k.a. Things to be aware of):
*I did not realize when I bought this video that the special mat shown on the cover was essential to doing the moves shown in the video. Those mats start at around $500 and can go up into the thousands if you want a good one; they're not in most people's price range
*The easier levels of difficulty ("Modified Basic" and "Basic") are based on a shorter workout as opposed to a less strenuous one. Thus, if a beginner to pilates, your heartrate is not high long enough to get a workout or a sweat going.
I enjoy the video overall, but unless you are interested in technique more than getting in shape (or can skip on your first use to the higher levels of difficulty), I would recommend getting a video that uses a more modern approach to pilates....more info
- Classical Pilates Technique - Mat Workout Series
This one by far is the best traditional video. Great for instructors. The classical Pialtes is the closest thing to a REAL studio. The Super Advanced is so much fun to watch. Not everyone can do this one. It's for a serious student that wants to master Contrology the way Joe intended. The cueing is good, but there are exercises that would need one on one instruction, especially in the Intermediate-Super Advanced Levels (See www.PMA.org for a Certified Pilates instructor in your area.)
This is also the only video that offeres some of the apparatus exercises in Mat format. All of the Classical Videos are well done, with amazing work by Bob/Alicia/Peter and co. I do this one when I need a butt kicking!...more info