Work Out At Home Wednesdays v.1

Hey everyone! Trying a new feature here. On Wednesday, I'll attempt to post a review of a workout DVD. For the inauguration of this momentous NEW series, I decided to start with the Dancing with the Stars  Fat Burning Cardio Dance workout because I'm a BIG DWTS fan!

dancing with the stars cardio dance

Workout Goals: Increase metabolism, burn fat, and get in shape like the dance pros.

Time: If done in its entirety, the routine is 50 minutes. However, you can do the routines separately. They are broken down to Mambo Mix (15 mins), Hollywood Jazz (15 mins), Hustle & Pop (15 mins), and the Cooldown (5 mins).

dancing with the stars workout menu

You can do all, mix and match, or do one and call it a day. Be mindful that the intensity level increases in order so Mambo Mix and Hustle & Pop are completely different in terms of calorie burn. I will touch more on that later.

Impact: Low. Definitely kind to the knees. Very minimal jumping.

Space considerations: You do need adequate space as many of the moves are lateral (side to side). The more room you have to do move, the better.

Equipment: None necessary. A pair of sneakers will do and your favorite home workout outfit.

Neat feature:  You can choose whether or not you want to workout with instruction. I can assume that after a few times of doing these routines, you can easily memorize them and would rather not have the voice over.

dwts workout screen

Fun Factor: HIGH. If you are a DWTS, you will love the routines. You can definitely do the routines whether or not you are a dancer but you have to at least love dance. Each routine provides break downs of sections of the choreography and at the end you do an entire dance choreography from beginning to end.

Cheese level: I added this as a category because I know some people might think dance workouts are cheesy. However, this one isn't. They are instructing you on real dance moves and they put together fun choreography. None of the ladies are cheesy . . . they're pro dancers! (OMG I'm such a DWTS dweeb.)

My experience: I wore my heart rate monitor to measure the intensity level. My heart rate before starting was 80bpm. After the Mambo routine, it was 98bpm; after the Hollywood Jazz routine, it was 115bpm; and after the Hustle & Pop routine, it was 120bpm. This is definitely a low intensity workout for someone who is well conditioned in aerobic activity, however, it's going to be a challenge for someone who isn't. I'd say this is a great DVD for someone who is looking for an intermediate workout routine. I thought it would be a good "off day" workout for me where I could dance around and have a little fun.


chelsea hightower_cardio danceI found the Mambo routine to be the easiest and the most boring. However, that could totally be because I am a trained salsa dancer and I was being snooty about it. My bad. I will say Edyta is definitely hard to follow as she was the worst at cuing. The best part of her routine is when she breaks down the "batucada." Anyone who has ever struggled with the basic Zumba samba step can learn the hip movement while learning what Edyta calls "batucada," it's the same hip motion.

I LOVED the Hollywood Jazz routine led by Kim Johnson and totally felt like a disco diva while doing the Hustle & Pop routine (my favorite).

Kim Johnson_cardio dance

I found Chelsea Hightower, who leads the Hustle & Pop workout, to be the instructor with the best energy. She could do an entire DVD on her own and keep you on your feet and excited. Something about her voice and her excitement to be there was great. Jazz was lots of fun too and you really feel like a"BROADWAY star", as Kim Johnson refers to it.

Overall, I can't see myself doing this more than a handful of times as I get bored really quickly. However, if you do enjoy home workouts, this could be a great DVD to have in your arsenal. It's a good one for when you're lacking motivation because it's fun!