Saturday, January 31, 2015
Can Jumpstart 180 Get Me Off The Couch and Moving? #exerciseforseniors
It's no secret that I am old and I am lazy, and the last thing on my to-do list is to exercise. Still, when I saw this program that was designed by a Doctor of Physical Therapy just for people who are older and out of shape, I thought, maybe this would be my ticket off the couch.
On the surface, it looks promising; there are 4 disks, each with 2 different workouts on it of about 30 minutes each. There is an accompanying workbook that encourages you to write down your goals and your accomplishments, and there is an 8-week calendar with a suggested schedule of workouts and days off to gently ease you into working out without getting bored of the same old routine.
For me, when I do an exercise video, I want to feel like I've invited a caring, professional person into my home who is going to help motivate me, make me feel capable, and also give me permission to take things at my own pace. I can say that I felt like Dr. France did give off a warm and caring vibe. She offered different variations of exercises for different levels of fitness, including using a chair, or adding weights or resistance bands.
She also said many times to take things at our own pace, that it was okay if we couldn't do something. Many, many times. Too many times. I began to feel like Siobhan thought I couldn't do anything. Yet, there were 3-4 very capable older people kickin' it hard in the video. I actually really liked that part. The participants were older, they were real people with different body shapes, and they were freakin' awesome. In the bonus section, one of the women was illustrating advanced moves, like plank pushups and tricep dips. WERK.
The exercises were fairly standard ones I'd seen before, which didn't bother me, but my husband thought he'd be better off just getting a book of exercises. What did bother both of us was the music and the audio. It seemed that the video had been recorded with Dr. France talking to her participants and to the audience with the idea that her dialogue would be in the video. But it wasn't. There was another track dubbed over it. So, it was like watching one of those old Godzilla movies where the actors' mouths were moving, but the dialogue didn't match at all. Most of the time, there would be no dialogue at all, just Dr. France moving her mouth and gesturing at things. My husband said he felt like he was missing out on the conversation. It was strange.
The music was another problem. It was also dubbed over the original track, so the beats never matched up with what the participants were doing. It was also very simple electronic music on a short loop, played over and over and over again. I like my workout music to inspire me, to motivate me. One section of music couldn't have been more than a few bars - maybe 5 seconds - and it was repeated so many times, I began to feel irrationally angry at the DVD.
My husband plays video games, and sometimes I'll know he's fallen asleep playing because I'll hear the same loop of music over and over. It was like that, only I was the one falling asleep. If I were to continue with this program, I would probably just have the video on mute and play my own music. Each workout has a warm up of several exercises repeated three times, and then the main workout that is also a series of exercises repeated three times, so I think it could be memorized or played in the background as a reminder fairly easily.
There were lots of sections that I found very challenging, and every workout had some floor work (my nemesis) so even though my husband is in much better shape than I am, we could do this video together and both get something out of it. And having a workout partner can be very motivating!
If you like to workout with your own music, or you're not bothered by the disparity of audio and video, but you need simple, doable exercises to help you move in a way that is designed to be pain-free for older, stationary folk, you might enjoy this series. It's obvious that Dr. France was really thinking about her audience, about making things simple, accessible, and for different levels of fitness, and working on flexibility as well as strength and endurance. It's a shame that the production value of the system makes it difficult for me to enjoy using her system.
If you'd like more information, or to purchase the Jumpstart 180 program, you can find it on their website, and also on Amazon, where it retails for $19.99, and comes with a 30-day, money-back guarantee.