The Bottom Line
This is an excellent choice for beginners or for anyone who wants a deeper understanding of proper alignment, breathing and the basic core moves that make up traditional Pilates workouts. This is also a great choice for instructors who need ideas for cueing clients or classes in proper form.
- Excellent cues give exercisers a clear understanding of each move
- Includes fundamental Pilates exercises to strengthen the entire body
- The simplicity of the workout makes it easy & enjoyable to follow
- No DVD menu to aid in navigation
- A 25-minute Pilates workout for beginners focusing on exercises to build a strong core
- An exerciser demonstrates the moves while the instructor explains proper positioning and alignment
- Exercises are repeated with excellent cueing and instruction so users understand each move
Guide Review - Total Pilates Rael System 7 for Beginners
I'm picky about home videos, especially when it comes to Pilates, so I was skeptical when a reader sent me the Rael System Total Pilates series since I'd never heard of it. But, after doing the beginner video, I've become a fan. A quick breakdown of the moves included are: pelvic rocking, pelvic curl (or bridge), shoulder warm-ups, spine twist, chest lift with oblique twists, roll ups, spine stretch, leg lifts, swan and cat stretch. The first thing I liked was the hands-on instruction. Rael Isacowitz, the instructor, has one exerciser perform each move while he explains proper alignment, breathing and where the movement should originate. This is perfect for beginners who may have difficulty understanding proper position. I also liked the simplicity of the workout--he chooses a few core moves and gives each one plenty of attention so you know exactly how to do them and can advance to harder workouts. Last, his cueing makes it easier to learn the moves, giving you ways to visualize the movements such as stacking your spine like a tree trunk or imagining that you're rolling up a wall to ensure proper alignment. The workout is short (about 25 minutes), simple and an excellent choice for beginners. My only very minor complaint is that you can't navigate the DVD and must fast forward through the intro each time...not a big deal. The series also includes intermediate and advanced DVD's, so watch for my reviews of those routines. The DVD is $19.99 and available at their website.