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Nell McAndrew: Maximum Impact

I got the DVD yesterday from Amazon and tried out the warm-up today. It's about 15 minutes but the last few minutes are just jogging in place. The difference to Rosemarie Conley is that there's a lot more bouncing. A bra is definitely required. On the other hand all the action is in a single place so you really only need a free space of 1.5m square to comfortably do all the movements.

The first half of the warm-up is all about the upper body and primarily the shoulders. The second half is about the lower body. You spend most of that squatting. Both halves include stretches. The presenter, whose name isn't on the box, keeps reminding you that this is a warm-up so you shouldn't over exert yourself. The jogging in place for several minutes at the end felt like filler, though.

The DVD itself is nicely presented but I have two quibbles. One is that it's only divided into four parts:
warm-up (15 mins)
interval training (40 mins)
resistance routine (20 mins)
floorwork (20 mins)

Because each section is so long, it's hard to pick and choose different parts that you want to work on that day. The total programme would be too long. I much prefer Rosemarie Conley's approach with ten minute sessions that you can build into a custom programme from 10 to 60 minutes. That's much more flexible. I haven't studied all parts yet but for instance the warm-up could easily have been divided into two parts, one for the upper body and one for the lower body. Similarly floorwork could have been divided into an abs section and a press-ups section. I would really have appreciated that because with my weak wrists there aren't many moves in the latter section I can do anyway.

My other quibble is that the camera work isn't really suited to a serious aerobics instruction DVD. Often when a move is first demonstrated the camera is zoomed out all the way so it shows the whole group. That makes it hard to see exactly what is going on. Later on the camera will often be zoomed in very far on a small part of Nell McAndrew's body and pan up or down. That lets us admire McAndrew's shape but it doesn't help us figure out what the heck she's doing.

The moves themselves are very simple and well-known aerobics moves. There are no confusing dance step combinations. It's all very straight forward. That doesn't mean it's too easy. After doing the warm-up twice and stretching afterwards I am still going to be aching tomorrow. Mostly in my upper arms and thighs.