Tonight when I did my Workout (six miles for an hour and a half) I decided to try a completely new "workout leader/coach" than my usual that I do which, if you are friends with and/or follow me on Facebook, you would know I do majority of Leslie Sansone walking Workouts. Tonight I used Jessica Smith instead of Leslie for all six of my workout miles.
Before beginning the review, a link to her YouTube channel; jessicasmithtv (all lowercase letters and no spaces in the username): https://www.youtube.com/user/jessicasmithtv
Jessica Smith Overall:
- Accessibility of Workouts: This just means how easily can a person view her workouts, do you have to pay to view/use them, is the video quality crisp and clear, is she easy to hear; basically the essentials and mechanics of the video is what this category is based on. I gave her a perfect score because the videos are crisp and excellent quality, all her workouts on YouTube are not only free but FULL workouts (a rare combination), and they are very easy to find and view. Only possible downside is not having an internet connection, or a connection that is choppy or slow (which would mean your workout would stream in and out, which isn't good).
- Talking About Proper Form & Alignment: I gave her middle of the road because she doesn't mention it in each video. But when she does mention it, she does give good instruction on how to stand tall, protect the spine and knees, etc. There just needs to be that excellent instruction she does give in every video so people don't get injured due to poor form or body alignment.
- Ease of Movements for Beginners: I gave her three stars here as well. Some moves are super easy (i.e. side steps, walking in place, etcetera), but some movements do become rather challenging, and while some moves she shows how to modify the movement, she does not show how to modify all the more complex movements. Also some of her movements do get confusing. I consider myself rather advanced with cardio and cardio mixed with strength training workouts, and she even had me stumbling on a few moves because the movements got rather confusing.
- Weight Workouts, Safety Talk Prior to Weight Use: I gave her a three here as well. She does mention a lot (which is important) that while doing cardio movements with weights to not "swing" or "jerk" the weights around due to stress that puts on low back and shoulders; which is absolutely right. And she gives a quick overview on how to properly use the weights in some movements. However, she could give much more instruction on safe and correct form with each new movement she does with the weights. For instance, I thought her explanation on proper back, shoulder, and ab alignment while doing tricep kickbacks wasn't really there and that she could have talked about that more. For many of the arm (elbow to shoulder) into the upper portion of the back movements there wasn't any instruction on proper alignment, how to move the weights while doing the cardio movements with the legs, and so on.
- Ease of Workout For Beginners: Average rating. The basic movements any beginner could do. It's the combination of when movements become more challenging/confusing with the direction on how to do the movements not always being clear that these workouts could become rather difficult for the beginner in exercising.
- Proper warm up/cool down prior to and after workout: I gave this a two because it almost isn't there. With most of her videos you have to warm up and cool down on your own. If you are at an intermediate or advanced level with your exercise and working out, this is completely fine. However, because the warm ups and cool downs aren't right there in the video, I do have some worry there when it comes to someone who has never exercised or is at a beginning level with their exercise.
- Variation of Workout Videos: Perfect score here. Variation is what keeps the body loosing weight if weight loss is needed, or for someone maintaining, variation is also important for keeping the mind engaged and intrigued in the workout. And she definitely has this down pact. She has I think around the 300-ballpark in terms of workout videos: from yoga and pilates, walking videos, strength training, flexibility, and so on: there is no way her workouts will have you bored.
- Personable: Basically does she have a good personality? Will she keep the exercisers motivated? Does she keep you engaged? Is she positive? She gets a "yes" to all of these and a perfect five. She is fun, and she makes interesting side comments. Also, her personality definitely makes you want to take the workout to the very end!
- Sweaty Workouts: Sweat is important in exercising, sweat is one key factor to knowing that your workout is at a good intensity for you. Sweat is a healthy function of the body that we all need to have regularly occur; and exercise is the best way for this to happen. She gets a perfect score here! I was very sweaty after her workouts!!
- Positive Message: I like working out with trainers who talking about motivation, wanting to push people doing their workouts to the end. Spreading the message that any movement, any exercise of any length is always better than nothing. She does all this (and more) perfectly, see this workout video she did as a reference: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=uW_gcxZ9J2Y
- Energizing Workouts: Perfect score here! I felt awake, ready to tackle what I needed to in the day, and full of spirit!!
- Ability to hear music (this is for the sake of proper step count and proper speed, since walking videos base the mileage on the beats per minute with the background music): Unfortunately she gets a one here. I could occasionally JUST make out some background music with the television volume up to about 80 (extremely loud), while others, no matter how loud I turned the television up, could not hear her background music. Not being able to hear that music does occasionally make keeping up with the pace hard because you do not know what music she is basing her steps on.
- Ease of Learning New Movements AND (combining the two) Proper Direction Ability: Three stars for both of these. Basically the key here is she just needs to be more consistent. Some movements she gives incredible and excellent direction on how to properly do them. Other movements she gives either none, or very little direction in properly doing new movements (which again, tripped me up a couple times while working out).
- Her Certifications/Credentials: Perfect score. According to her website (which can be found here: http://jessicasmithtv.com/jessica-smith/) in the "about" section, her website states, "...as a certified wellcoach, fitness instructor and personal trainer, she has spent the last 15 years helping students and clients...Jessica has held certifications from the American College of Sports Medicine, the National Academy of Sports Medicine, the Aerobics and Fitness Association of America, the International Sports and Conditioning Association, Powerhouse Pilates (in both mat & reformer method), Martial Fusion and Johnny G’s SPINNING™ Program." She definitely has the credentials, which I absolutely LOVE LOVE LOVE!!!
Overall, I do like Jessica Smith workouts because I am at an advanced level, so I can keep up with her for 95% of the workout. I just don't think I would recommend her for beginners. Leslie Sansone is much better for beginners (and she gives such good guidance and direction that even the most advanced exerciser can benefit and get very sweaty from her workouts because Leslie makes it very clear how to modify at all levels). However, though Leslie is more versatile in that sense, I still intend to continue to do Jessica's workout because since I do want to loose more weight, the variation in workouts is key to keep the body guessing, thusly working hard, and burning more calories, which then causes a greater weight loss.
That's all for tonight. Keep strong. Keep Healthy. Keep Motivated. Health and Fitness=A Forever Fight Worth Fighting For!!!!!!