Exercisers in search of a basic introduction to cardiovascular fitness will find a straightforward, honest-to-goodness beginner's layout in Denise Austin: Xtralite, Beginner's Aerobics. Austin's simple choreography and enthusiasm create an encouraging and approachable workout that can have real results if done frequently (at least three times a week). This half-hour session includes five minutes of warm-up, 20 minutes of aerobic exercise, and a five- minute cool down. In addition to being an incredibly time-savvy program, this workout illustrates a perfect example of gradually increasing intensity that will aid participants in reaching target heart rate range (not to mention staving off injuries). Safety is central throughout this session as lower back isolations and stretching play a key role in all phases of this workout. The movements within the aerobic portion are easy to follow and incorporate both the upper and lower body through choreography that lengthens and extends the torso and legs. Familiar steps like the grapevine, box step, and mambo are presented as singular moves without combining them or creating routines. This proves to be an accessible and simple approach to learning the basic format for any aerobic class. The music is not very motivational here, but Austin captures the true essence of a beginner's format both effectively and enthusiastically. This is a great place to begin any fitness regimen. --Olivia Voigts
If you're a Denise Austin fan you'll love this one I recently purchased three videos with exercises aimed at getting one back into shape. The other two were Startin' Simple Easy Aerobics and Fabulous Forever with Mirabai Holland. This was one of the best of the three. I haven't exercised for three years, and I am recoveing from knee surgery. I found Denise Austin's Xtralite aerobics easy on my limbs and fairly easy to follow. She is, as always, invigorating and inspiring to watch and follow. My only concern is that people who have never done aerobics might have trouble following the routines. She does not always explain the steps, and she assumes viewers know basics such as grapevine and ball-change steps. People who do not already know these things will probably feel frustrated the first few times they use the tape. Austin also adds some hops and skips to the routine, which I can not do. They are not mandatory, and I am not even sure she is aware that she does them. But Denise is Denise -- energetic, bouncy and breathless. I love her, and this tape has been a great help for me....more info
Bad soundtrack Denise Austin is excellent, it is too bad we can't hear what she is saying. Because of the wind, waves crashing and too loud music she is inaudible. From other tapes I have of her, she gives good tips just when you need them, on this one it is impossible.I have to turn the audio off in order to concentrate the noise is so bad. It is too bad. Otherwise a good workout but I would not reccommend it....more info
good but boring Frankly, this tape is rather boring. Denise is at the beach again, exercising all alone and babbling her head off about how great exercise is for you. I wish she'd get a better scriptwriter! But this video is what it says--a basic low-aerobic tape with good instruction on form. It would be a lot more fun and motivating if other people were in it, and if the music were better. I have to force myself to face this tape, daily. It's just so...dull....more info
Out to make a quick buck Although this video was not terribly taxing and thus qualifies for "Xtra Lite" in my book, I wasn't very impressed with the rest of it. I feel like she went to the beach, threw on a cute outfit, and winged it from there. The sound is poor, the music is ..., and she [messes] up so many times I find it difficult to follow, even after watching it repeatedly ... I do not recommend this tape....more info
Great for beginners This tape is great for beginners like me who can't remember the last time they exercised! I took an aerobics class a few years ago, and I can tell you that the steps you'll do with this tape are very similar to what you'd do in a class. The workout itself is at a good level - simple enough to not get lost, but difficult enough to get a good workout in the short time span.
Denise Austin seems to be very enthusiastic that you have taken the first step to making yourself healthier. At the end, she seems so proud of you that you think she's going to cry. And, it made me feel better to notice that she's not just a pretty face - by the end of the video, she was sweating, too!
The only really bad thing about this tape is the music. I don't know where they dug up this muzak, but it sounds like an 80's movie gone wrong. If Denise is motivational, then the music serves the exact opposite purpose.
All around I am happy with the way I feel (even though I've only had the tape a week) and am pleased I bought this tape. It's getting me up off the couch and EXERCISING!...more info
Helped me get back into exercise For a seasoned exerciser, this would be BORRINGG. But for me, who's gotten so out of shape that I didn't know how to get back into it, this video is a life-saver. I feel much better after having used this for a while, and I will be able to go on to more challenging workouts soon. I also love the beach setting....more info
GREAT Workout for Beginners This is a great workout for beginners- or people who don't have alot of time. It's about 25 minutes. Extremely easy steps to remember and to do- but it gives you a workout too. Denise Austin is slightly annoying, but once I got used to the workout I turned her down, and some of my favorite music up. Really great- if you're just starting. Or are out of shape....more info
Inspiring, Great Workout This video has the ocean as a backdrop and is easy to follow along with the program. No complicated steps here. I love this workout tape and do it at least 5 days a week, religiously. It helps me relax and get in tune with myself. Not, to mention, I've seen results after only 4 weeks!
I highly recommend this for beginners and intermediates alike! You'll enjoy it!...more info
Good workout if you are just starting to get in shape This was my first exercise video. I did gym-dance several years ago and from there never stopped dancing, be it in the disco, creating choraographies, and so on, so I like things with a bit more pace, but this is just right to start out if you are out of shape (after having my daughter I ended up about 40 lbs too heavy) and want to get moving. It has prety simple moves, but not too simple that you won't be challenged. And if you do it regularly for a while, it will prepare you for some real stuff, like some serious cardio.
I gave it 3 stars only because I have now not used it for a while, as it's not challenging anymore, plus Denise's constant chatter becomes a little annoying after a while......more info
NOT for the truly out of shape! I've exercised off and on (mostly on till the last few years) for almost 20 years. I've mainly used videos to work out to. I used to do the Denise Austin workouts everyday on ESPN when I had cable. Back then I loved many things about her workouts like her enthusiasm (I needed it!), some of her moves, the scenery. But two things that I didn't like were her excessive chatter (mostly droning encouragement if that makes sense, too light on the instruction), and her inability to keep time to the music. I decided to try her again recently by purchasing the Xtralite: Beginner's Aerobics video.
Let me point out that I have hardly exercised in the last 3 years and really needed a *lite* workout to get me started again. So I bought this one thinking it would be easy. I was sadly disappointed that some of the moves were definitely NOT for someone in bad shape! For instance, she does a *box step* that is unsafe for weak knees. And she does a lot of kicking to the side and fast twisting that could damage the knees of someone way out of shape.
I think if she REALLY wanted to design a good workout for *beginners* or people out of shape, she should talk to people in that condition and let them try her workouts first. To me, this workout was designed by someone who has NO CLUE what it's like to be out of shape. And she kept mentioning that she designed this workout just for us, BUT she seemed to be winging it at times, or flubbing her moves. Would've been nice of her to yell "CUT!" and start over. That's the nice thing about taping a workout.
I DO get a good workout now that I've been doing it for a few weeks. I like the visual imagery she uses. Very relaxing. It's not a bad tape, just could be better. Don't try this one if you have weak knees and ankles! But not a bad addition to your exercise tape collection. I took it on vacation recently and didn't have to bring any weights, step, etc. That was nice....more info
Awesome Light Aerobic Workout Nice and short, as well as not too tough. The steps she uses are NOT hard, and I am no dancer! Even if they are a little difficult for you, it would only take a couple repeats of the tape to get them down. I highly recommend this video for beginners, those who have fallen out of working out, and those who need to lose a lot of weight (talk to your doctor first, of course).
Denise allows you to get a workout without killing yourself. You feel your heart rate pick up and your muscles working, but you are not dying like you might be in an aerobics class. This great combination makes me want to get up and do the tape again, as opposed to other tapes where I just think how boring and painful they can be and decide to watch TV instead. After a while, though, this workout can get too easy, so you have to step up to the next level and buy a new tape. But if you are pressed for time and need to get in a light workout where you won't be drenched with sweat, this video is great. And, of course, Denise is her ever-enthusiastic self and does a fantastic job in motivating you to work harder....more info
Excellent for the time pressed, overweight, & out of shape Between a long bus commute and my work schedule, I have only a few spare hours in the evening. Combine that with an early sunset and cold wet winter weather and that has left me desperate for an exercise outlet!
I am at least 50 pounds overweight and very out of shape, but since this video is only 30 minutes, it is easy to squeeze in at night and I end up drenching my teeshirt each time. This video is too short to be tempted to skip!
The first time I did the video I wondered if it was "enough", since it seemed easy, but I think it is since I am sleeping well, I've got some light muscle aches in my butt and legs (3 weeks into it), and I find it a lot easier to tolerate the sitting on that long bus ride.
I cannot do the moves as smoothly as Denise does, but the key is to "keep moving" - and she reminds you often! I also notice that as I keep doing the video, I see more details in her moves, I incorporate more details into my own moves, and I get better at doing the video! For example, her cha-cha metamorphasizes into another move which requires that you stand up on your toes as you turn from side to side. I did not immediately see that the first week I was doing the video.
I like Austin's "whole body" approach too, in that while she's moving she talks about drinking lots of water and eating healthy food. If you keep playing a short video several times a week that reminds you of those things, pretty soon it starts to have a positive impact on you. If you feel dumpy and depressed about your physicial condition, it's got a good psychological effect.
Austin suggests doing the video 3 times a week, preferably 4. She also says you should start seeing results in 6 weeks, but I assume that means you've also cleaned up your eating habits enough so that the exercise will have some effect!...more info
Too complicated Overall the format of the tape is fine: warm up, exercise, cool down. But I expected more from a beginner's tape. Like actaully showing you how to do the steps. Most of them were easy enough that it didn't really matter, but a significant section of the middle of the tape was spent adding new twists to a turn step which didn't get enough attention. I rewound that section 5 times, and still couldn't figure out how she did the turns....more info
A Great Start (With a Little Cha Cha) After being overweight my whole life, I needed something that would get me started. I picked up this tape on a whim and tried it out. Denise is so motivating, even if you can't finish, you really want to! She really makes you push yourself. She repeats the moves enough to where you become familiar with them, but not bored. She also takes the time to do a proper warm up and cool down (Billy Blanks could take notice.) The scenery is beautiful and keeps you visually intrigued. If you're looking for somewhere to start, I would highly recommend this video. If you're past the beginner stage, you might find this to be a little too easy. But I still do it if I want a light workout. She erases all excuses for not exercising!...more info
Great way to get back into excercise Having been familiar with Denise's older step videos, I was pleased to have found this workout tape when I was looking to get back into excercise. It provides an easy-to-follow, 35-minute workout (so that I have time to do it in the morning) which provides just the right intensity level for burning fat. It's great because you can do it without any equipment, and I can do it indoors (and out of the cold Michigan winter). It's nice to see the ocean (the workout is on a beach) when all I have is snow outside my windows. I've been using this and a toning video 3-5 times a week, which along with a healthy diet, has allowed me to lose 3-4 pounds each week!...more info
Disappointing I was really disappointed with this video, for a number of reasons. First of all, Denise is standing near the ocean, which makes for a nice view, but the noise of the waves seriously interfered with the sound quality -- at times I couldn't even hear her! Also, I found the choreography to be far too intricate for a beginner. It was nearly impossible for me to keep up (granted, I'm no Ginger Rogers). And last but not least: Denise looks great, but it would have been nice to have some other people there . . . maybe even some with more "average" bodies....more info
Really Good for Beginners After college I got a job working under flourescent lights at a computer all day, needless to say my butt seriously started to spread - along with the rest of me! When I decided to get back in shape joining a gym seemed a little intimidating. I needed something that was convenient, fun and would provide a good cardio workout without causing me bodily harm. Luckily, I found this video. The routines were challenging, yet can be learned quickly. Denise provides a great total-body workout that is energizing and fun. I love how she adds dance steps to the workout, my favorite segment is a cha-cha/mambo combo that really works the waist and hips. This was a perfect way to ease back into working out and is still a lot of fun to do in the mornings as an energizer....more info
Peppy and Pleasing Denise immerses her all-around aerobics in sun, sand and a tranquil ocean background. Her moves are designed to engage all the muscles and give you a cardio-vascular pep-up without the exertion of a full aerobic encounter. You will probably need 2 tapes(an extra one when you wear out the first one)...more info
Great motivational video for beginners! Because I had been sedentary for so many years, I was hesitant to use workout videos. On the recommendation of a friend, I tried Denise's "X-tra Lite" videos and fell in love! I never enjoyed exercise before, but Denise's enthusiasm and bubbly personality encouraged me to start an exercise program that has helped me to lose 20 lbs. I've since moved on to Denise's more advanced tapes (wow! what a workout!), but this initial tape was a fantastic start!...more info
I don't see how you can lose weight using this video. I bought the video and was not impressed. I did not break a sweat and I have not exercised in years. If you really want to lose weight I would not buy this video. I like Denise Austin and I am sure she has better videos....more info
This video made me a Denise Austin fan! If you have tried the Richard Simmons exercise tapes and found them too hard to follow, this is the tape for you. I don't find it boring,and I get a good workout in 30 minutes. I have been doing this video 5 days a week for 2 months and feel 100% better than before.Easy on your back and knees,makes you sweat, she gives you encouagement as you go. I don't think you could go wrong with this one unless you are at an advanced level of fitness....more info
Great beginner tape, will soon lead to harder moves. Great for a beginning exerciser-low impact, but a good work-out. After a few viewings, the moves are easy to follow. After a few weeks you're ready to progress to something a little bit harder. Very motivational and warm up, exercise, cool down all in only 30 minutes. I can do it in the morning before work and still not be late!!!...more info
Great for a Novice This is a great video for those who don't exercise much. it is easy to follow and not too hard. You will break a sweat, though! I am not a dancer so the simple moves were great. If you are not blessed with grace and rythem this tape is wonderful! More advanced exercisers will want more of a challenge but this is perfect for a beginner....more info
Great Aerobic Foundation I have recently gotten back in to working out and have found this video to be a great foundation video for building up your fitness level. I have moved on to more challenging "Denise" videos, but this one is great for building up a sweat when time is short and an entire 45 minute video is a hassle......more info
An easy to "stick with" workout video Denise Austin gets me, the on and off exerciser, hooked on aerobics.I had not tried exercise tapes in years, but wanted to get started again.I am not in the best of shape, but was able to follow the whole tape within a couple of days. The steps are repetitious, but I like knowing what to do next. By the time the tape is over and sweating all over and feel invigorated. Way to go Denise!...more info
Easy on the back I used to be very physically active but now suffer from a bad back condition. I can do this video however, because it is completely non impact. I enjoy Denise Austin's enthusiasm. The only knock is I wish it were longer and you progress out of it too quickly....more info
I didn't like this I didn't like this tape so much. I felt like Denise was more concerned with showing off her body and swinging her hips around, than with explaining the movements and concentrating on form. Also, I felt like the steps were a little too dancy, and hard to follow if you're not co-ordinated...more info
Terrific Start !! Denise Austin does it again!! I hadn't worked out in forever - and I HATE complicated steps - this tape is terrific for starting you on track. It's not quite a 5 star, however, because there is so much repitition that you get bored quickly. Of course, by that time, you are probably ready for something a little tougher anyway.......more info
Easy to follow and encouraging. I have a hard time staying motivated when it comes to exercise, but this video is so easy to follow and Denise Austin is so encouraging, that I look forward to working out every day. I have not been exercising and found the steps generally easy to follow. The ones I didn't get the first time, I had mastered by my third workout. I highly recommend this video....more info
Requires coordination, not for the true beginner This video is not exactly for the true beginner to aerobics, having NEVER done aerobics before and having not exercised in years, I found this video difficult to do. Some of the steps are confusing and require a lot of coordination, it is difficult to hear the instructions, and it may be too intense of a workout for someone who has not exercised in some time. Don't get me wrong, if you are coordinated, regularly active and familiar with aerobics, this may be the perfect work out for you!...more info
EASY to do and to stick with I thought this was an excellent video because of Denise's great personality and because it is one on one with her. I don't like other fitness tapes with a whole troop of people dancing all over. The exercises are easy to do and even I can do them, even being coordination-challenged. I could follow her the entire time. Beautifully done and the scenery was great....more info
This video brought me back from the dead! This is a great beginner's video. The exercises are easy but still give you a great sweat. After gaining 40 pounds, I considered my physical fitness days dead. But because it's low impact, there are days when I am doing the tape in the morning and evening. I loved this tape so much that I bought another copy for my mom, who also has high praise for it. We are both addicted! There are only two things that reduces it from a five-star tape. The background noise of the beach is a bit distracting and, therefore, it is sometimes difficult to hear Denise Austin's instructions. Additionally, the tape does a lot of repetition. But if you're a beginner like me, that's also very comforting. All and all, GET THIS TAPE....more info
Outstanding workout for those who have been inactive Although I am a self-proclaimed cynic regarding traditional aerobics classes, I found Ms. Austin's exercise routines to be an invigorating and easy reintroduction to exercise. I thoroughly enjoy working out with my new-found "personal trainer" ---all in the privacy of my own home....more info