So, I'm gonna start reviewing exercise videos and certain exercise moves that I try out, and who knows I might even venture into exercise equipment or clothing or activities in the future. But lets start with this...
GAIAM Balance Ball Beginner Workout
You will need a Balance Ball and 40 minutes.
Well, beginner is right. This video will give you a couple of take home ideas for exercises to do on your own with your ball. But as for getting a good workout from just following the video through, don't count on it. There were 2 or 3 exercises that I thought would give me a good workout, but she only makes you do exercises 5 to 10 times and for only one repetition, so I'm pretty sure I won't be feeling the burn.
Some of the exercises seem a little cumbersome to do with the ball. I tried to follow the video completely, but I thought the ball was just in the way some of the time. But I understand, I got the video to use my ball, so it's nice that they find so many ways to incorporate it.
Like I said, there were some pretty good exercises that I will store in the back of my head for future use. However, I did not like the hamstring stretches she goes through. In my opinion, they are bad for your back. You should not bend forward with your back to stretch your hamstrings.
Example of the wrong way shown here:
Instead you should keep your chest up and bend forward at your hips, as shown here:
She might say to do that, I can't remember, but I find it really hard to get a good (and proper) hamstrings stretch on the floor, which is where she was having me do it. I would suggest sitting on the ball with one leg outstretched and, keeping your chest up, lean forward at your hips to get the stretch, like so:
There is also a Daily Stretch feature. It's 15 minutes of stretching. It starts out a little rough. And by that I mean you are sitting in a chair next to the ball, feeling a bit geriatric. You know, like those early morning tv shows of working out while sitting?
But that doesnt last very long, thankfully. This section acutally does a proper hamstring stretch, so that made me happy. It finishes with some bouncing on the ball. It had some of that in the main workout as well. Personally, I dont like it at all. It hurts my neck. (now I SOUND geriatric!) But really besides those 2 things, the daily stretch feature was pretty good. It's very yoga like.
Overall, I wouldnt suggest the video. You wont get a workout with it unless you really work at it (as in pausing every exercise to do 20 more) or unless you are REALLY out of shape!
I hope you enjoyed my little fitness review (and don't mock my self-modeled examples too much)! More to come in the (near) future!