Turbo Jam – Cardio Party Mix 1 (2005)

Posted: June 29, 2011 in DVD Reviews

Chalene Johnson came out with Turbo Jam when I was in high school, but I never really got into it. Then she had Turbo Kick. Now she has TurboFire. Girl’s got all kinds of Turbo power ready to unleash! I’ve seen the TurboFire infomercial dozens of times and contemplated buying it, but I always stop—is it going to be too dancey for me? I like to party and let loose, don’t get me wrong, but unless I’m doing Zumba, I like my workouts to be hardcore, hence my love for kickboxing and boxing. So the questions is: Does Chalene’s dancey kickboxing satisfy the BA in me?

Turbo Jam – Cardio Party Mix 1 (2005)

I did the DVD version, but all I could find on Amazon was the VHS! Gotta love going old school!

Where I Got This DVD: Borrowed it from a girlfriend (thanks, Carissa!)
Length: Approx. 44 mins.
Instructor: Chalene Johnson
Team: Some cardio crazies. Look to Mindy and Anarita (sp?) for modifications.

 The breakdown:

  • There’s a clock at the bottom telling you how much time is left, which segment is coming up next, and how long that segment is.
  • Warm-up is about 3-4 mins. long—the cues weren’t very forewarning and I felt myself having to learn quickly.
  • There aren’t many reps per move before Chalene adds or moves on, so you really have to pay attention.
  • Segments include: punches and wheels, squats and kicks, speed bags (I LOVED this segment!), TURBO!, water break, recovery dance party, and finale.
  • TURBO! Segment = approx. 1 ½ mins. of high intensity randomness, includes jumping, punching, dancing, and more—it was really fast-paced
  • Lots of punching and knee combos, which I like because I feel like it works your entire body.
  • Sure enough, the music is good and fun, but Chalene talks a lot so you can’t always focus on the music.
  • Like I mentioned earlier, the cueing isn’t great. It’s like Chalene tries to do too many combos too fast and I had to rewind a few times.
  • Cool down was about 5 mins. long and broken into two parts: finesse (some weird moves arm and leg shuffle thing that I felt awkward doing) and thai chi stretch (which went WAY TOO FAST for thai chi and the poses/stretches weren’t held long enough).


Instructor: Chalene is very energetic and you can just tell that girlfriend loves her job and working out with people, which is huge. Now that I’ve started teaching, I admire instructors who really get into it with their crew. And hey, the chica was born and raised in Michigan and went to my alma mater, Michigan State! Can’t beat that 🙂 She’s definitely cool and does prep you well sometimes, but not always. She talks and comments a lot, but it never got so bad that I had to turn down the volume.
Moves: I liked the combos—different than what I’m used to with Billy Blanks and my usual kickboxing routines, but still really effective, high-energy moves.
Intensity Level: All levels, definitely.
Buy It?: There were certainly some “flaws” I found in the DVD, but I can see myself liking it the more I do it and the more familiar with the moves and cueing I became. It is fun and different—kickboxy and dancey without being over-the-top with either. If you’re looking to get into kickboxing but are intimidated by it, then this may be a good place to start if you like to dance. Or, if you’re already into dancing workouts and want to shake things up (no pun intended), this could be good to spice up your routine. However, you do need to be patient with the moves and cueing and speed of it all, so you can’t be easily discouraged. I would say you should at least try this DVD if you’re looking for something new with a twinge of what you’re used to (dancing and/or kickboxing). I know I’ll be asking to borrow it again. Maybe not once a week, but definitely another time or two.


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