NZ Glen : BodyCombat fanatic

Archive for December 2008

Picture yourself fighting one-on-one in the cage – Ultimate Fighting Championship (UFC) style – and that’s BODYCOMBAT™ 39. You’re going to learn the skills you need to hang on until the last round so get ready for some combo-heavy tracks and lots of repetition.

To get a taste of an authentic UFC you’re going to need to get warmer faster as ultimate fighters are among some of the fittest athletes in the world. So that’s what the Warmup is all about, with a focus on keeping light on your feet.

Get ready for one of the longest combos ever seen in a Power Training Track in Track 3 – can you believe there are 16 Punches in a row? The power for the huge combo comes from the core of your body and motivation from rocking track Come With Me.

Two different types of energy are needed in Track 4. The Knee Combo is fun and light but you’ve gotta be tough during the Back Fist/Side Combo. Scooter vs. Status Quo’s Jump That Rock (Whatever You Want) harnesses the energy perfectly.

There are six solid rounds of identical choreography in Track 5 which also features the Power Squat. P!nk’s in the house in Track 6 and you’re gonna want to start a fight during So What. There’s no recovery and you’re trying to knock your opponent out with every punch! A new move, the Step Over Cross, features in Track 7. This is awesome as it can be used in both an offensive and a counter-move situation. Make sure you hold something back for the last 60 seconds of continuous Knee Strikes!

Your muscular endurance is certainly tested in Track 8 where the challenge is to never step out of the intensity. Track 9 is void of conventional Situps and instead uses the Hover and Side Plank to work all of the core muscles. The apt lyrics of Infernal’s I Won’t Be Crying help you through this intense track – even though you might feel like crying by this stage!

Full BODYCOMBAT 39 tracklist here

Santa doing COMBAT!!!

Santa doing COMBAT!!!

Hey guys! Sorry for the lack of posting for the last few days – spent them in Auckland doing the usual pre-Christmas thing; shopping, socialising and of course the compulsory round of combat various combat classes! Some were great, and truth be told some weren’t (I’ll dedicate my entire next post to that subject actually – let’s just say one class in particular was ummm… “interesting!”). But, I just wanted to take this opportunity to wish you all a very Merry Christmas and a happy holidays wherever you may be! (Here we’re in summer so I’ll be spending the next couple of weeks on the beach relaxing… ahh bliss!)

Traditionally the ol’ calorie intake takes a hefty rise into the stratosphere for all of us this time of year, and rightly so – heck we all work our butts off so relax, enjoy time with friends and family and use the holiday period to get refreshed and renewed! On that note my posting will be a tad sporadic (or perhaps even non-existent) for the next week or two as I’m on vacation – so if I don’t get a chance to say it again as well as having an awesome Xmas please have a tremendous new years and get ready for a massive 2009 that includes BODYCOMBAT’s 10 year anniversary!! It’s gonna be HUUUUGE!!!!


Following on from my last post I was thinking about what would be my favourite BODYCOMBAT mix from 2008, and that got me thinking about if you really wanted to challenge yourself and your participants – what would be the the most challenging (read that as hardest!) mix you could create from this year’s releases. Here’s what I came up with:

Most challenging BODYCOMBAT mix from 2008 (releases 35-38 )

1. Amazed (Pascal mix)/Tick Tick Boom BC35 – 7:51
2. The United Vibe BC35 – 7:11
3. Like I Feel BC38 – 5:30
4. Headbangerz Rock Da Club/Cold As Ice BC38 – 6:23
5. Don’t You Wanna Feel BC36 – 6:30
6. No Good BC38 – 5:24
7. Let The Beat Control Your Body BC37 – 4:47
8. What Hurts The Most BC38 – 6:18
9. Dance Floor Anthem BC35 – 4:05
10. Our Solemn Hour BC37 – 4:17

Total time: 58:16

Honestly this mix would be a total leg killer! Almost too hard! The dual butt killing tracks of The United Vibe and Cold As Ice (both with roundhouse knees into side kick combinations) – along with the lunges of Don’t You Wanna Feel and the lunge/esquiva/lunge/front kick combos in No Good followed by the six rounds of continuous knees in Let The Beat Control Your Body – my God by the time track 8 rolled around you’d be ready to keel over! And then just to add insult to injury track 8 is real killer as well!

Truth of the matter is I kinda dislike Don’t You Wanna Feel so much it’s unlikely I’d utilise this mix terribly often as written -but it would make for an interesting experiment so perhaps I’ll pitch it as an option when we start mixing again… of course the members would have no idea what they’d be in for!!!

This is the time of year where we usually look back at the year that’s past, and reflect on the good times (and conversely not so good times), and lessons learned. So it seemed fitting for me to do the same for BODYCOMBAT; to take a look at the last four releases and their best bits (and of course their not so best bits), new developments and perhaps use these lessons to look towards the future of BC.

2008 was the year of BODYCOMBAT 35-38 (full tracklistings for these releases can be found here). It may seem strange that I’m writing about the past year in BC when I’ve only been doing BC since 2007. However bear in mind that over the past year or so I’ve averaged a minimum of 7 classes per week, usually at least 10 and sometimes as many as 16! I’ve also completed both the BODYCOMBAT instructor training module and subsequent certification, and when I look back at the past 12 or so releases there’s only a handful of tracks I don’t know so it’s been a pretty steep learning curve!

So, what can we say about BODYCOMBAT in 2008. Well there’s a few obvious points:

  • The introduction of the esquiva (BC37 and 38 )
  • No e-kicks (evasive side kicks)
  • No jump knees 😦
  • Minimal gingas; in fact they only made their appearance in two tracks- That’s Right (BC35) and oddly in the Muay Thai track Party Non Stop (BC36) (I say oddly as Muay Thai and Capoeira could not be more different!) and on both occasions the ginga was used as more of a holding pattern between combos as compared to earlier releases
  • A move towards leg conditioning (That’s Right/Stamp/No Good (Start The Dance))
  • The appearance of the jump kick in the first half of the year (Jump in BC35 and Zombie in 36) into the evil kick katas in the track 4s of BC37 and BC38.
  • And overall looking at the above a DEFINITE lowering of the complexity of the releases.

In fact when you compare 2008 to the four releases of 2007 the difference is chalk and cheese. The complexity of BC31-34 was much higher. BC32 and BC33 had loads of gingas and LOADS of e-kicks in Call Me When You’re Sober and This Ain’t A Scene, It’s An Arms Race, those releases that didn’t have the e-kick in the track 4 had the jump kick – and jump knees featured in the muay thai tracks. So big changes there. We also know that the complexity drops down even further in BODYCOMBAT 39 (see here).

However, that’s not to say that 2008’s releases were easy. Far from it. In fact in my opinion BC38 is right up there with one of the toughest releases ever! 37 would have to rank up there too.

Highlights for me? Believe it or not I’ve loved the warmups, specifically 35, 37 and 38 (36 not so much – Walking in Memphis – that didn’t really do it for me); I love the amount of fun we had with You can’t stop the beat (BC35) (and we’re still having – in fact we did that track again this morning!). I have also really enjoyed the recent track 8’s – Heaven (35), Sea of Love (37) and What Hurts The Most (38 ) – which despite being repetitive have been great.

Lowlights? That’s easy as there’s not many – really only 3; Jump (BC35), That’s Right (BC35) and Don’t You Wanna Feel (BC36). Those tracks didn’t float my boat at all.

One other point is that the muay thais  from this year’s releases have not been the absolute highlight of the workout for me as they’ve been in other releases. I think that’s because I miss the jump knee. Okay, truth is I really miss the jump knee! So What! is my all time favourite combat track (to clarify – I mean from BC27 not the So What in BC39 – although that was fun!). D&R please bring it back!

But what about the esquivas you may ask? well, they’re not on my highlights or lowlights reel simply due to the fact that I’m still of two minds when it comes to them! If you’ve read some of my past posts you’ll know that on the one hand I’m not a big fan as I do combat for cardio not conditioning (for conditioning I do BODYPUMP and weight training) – so I’d definitely prefer another “cardio” track over a leg conditioning track. However, on the other hand I know a lot of people love them and to be fair I think if we’d had another cardio track in BC38 I’d be ready to die by the end of the class – it’s hard enough! And I can see their merits from an interval training perspective. So, although I definitely don’t hate the esquiva tracks they also don’t feature on my highlights reel either.

All in all I think 2008 has been a fantastic year for BODYCOMBAT. I think the direction the programme is going in is the right one, yet in saying that I know Dan and Rach have a few new things planned for 2009 and I’m really looking forward to seeing those!

How about you, what were your highpoints and lowpoints?

Dan & Rach - kicking serious butt!

Dan & Rach (combat programme directors) - kicking some serious butt!

Speaks for itself I think… simply awesome!!!

Once again let me start by stating I’m only a BODY PUMP participant (although I plan to do module in March) so by comparison to combat I’m fairly inexperienced when it comes to the realm of BP. In fact my first ever class was PUMP 66, so I’ve only been doing it for maybe 6-8 months. However, I’ve since done a lot of other releases due to mixing,  I’m an ex-bodybuilder and have been weight training for probably 15 years, and started personal training about a decade ago so I’m pretty darn experienced in the weight lifting department!

Overall I enjoyed BP68 a lot. It seems to be fairly common for the last batch of releases to take a step back in complexity. BODYCOMBAT 38 for example is definitely simpler, I know that low complexity options have now appeared in BODYJAM as of this latest release and BODYPUMP appears to be heading down the same path. The reasons are pretty obvious I’d say – the simpler the movements the easier it is to pull new people in and not scare them off with complicated sequences. The trick (of course) is to do this without upsetting the regulars. I know in combat BC38 has no gingas, no jump kicks/knees, no evasive side kicks etc. BODYCOMBAT 39 is even simpler again! And the level/number of bottoms halves/partial movements etc seems lower in this release (though there are a couple of new surprises!). The great thing about that is that you can go heavier. I’ll no doubt write a more substantial review once I’ve done it a few more times but for now here are my thoughts;

Warmup: “Perfect Day” – Indigo; Not too much you can write about a warm up. Like the song, good start to the workout. In the release I did the instructor completely ballsed this up and actually did the whole thing to track 3 (It’s Not My Time) and didn’t even realise (or when she did she definitely didn’t let on). I guess she figured as it was the release no one would know! Well of course I’ve known the track list for months so it was pretty darn obvious to me!

Squat track: “Big Girls Don’t Cry” – Nick Skitz; I actually don’t mind the version of this song. When you get past the HIDIOUS lyrics “And I’m gonna miss you like a child misses their blanket” – puuulease!!! Gimme a bucket! Truth be told I found this track a lot less painful than previous releases. It has a distinct lack repeated bottom halves (no 8 count or 16 count killers) which actually has meant I can walk properly today… on the one hand that’s great but on the other hand they hurt so much because they work! It does mean you can go heavier so do it!

Chest track: “It’s Not My Time” – 3 Doors Down; I really like this song and couldn’t help singing away to it (both times it was played haha). This track again you can go heavier on, it has a lot of focus on the negative and super slow reps – ouch!

Back track: “What Do You Want From Me” – Cascada: Bit of a change in this track. Sets of 4 clean and presses with no rows in the middle. From what I understand this hasn’t been done in Pump for years. It takes a little bit to get used to (you do want to go into the row movement after a C&P out of habit) – great track (well, any Cascada track IMO is great!)

Triceps: “Hook Me Up” – Veronicas: No bars used in this track. Again bit different but it works. One thing that frustrated me a little is doing kickbacks on one side only then going into tricep pushups on the bench immediately – means one side of your body gives out on the pushups as it’s pre-exhausted while the other is fresh. Then you do it again. Would make more sense to me to do kicks backs on one side, then the other, then the push ups. Maybe that doesn’t fit the music as well. Also features seated overhead presses with a plate (or two). Not a big fan of the music itself but didn’t really notice it due to the pain!

Biceps: “Start It” – Vanessa Amorosi; This track was the most painful for me – it seemed to go on forever with seemingly dozens of bottom halves yet the track itself (apparently) is short! The music itself didn’t do that much for me but who knows could grow on me…

Lunge track: “Listen To Your Heart” – Nick Skitz; This isn’t really a “lunge” track per se – in reality it’s another fricken squat track! The track is comprised of front squats which haven’t been in Pump for years and years. This is where the bar rests across the top of your chest/shoulders on the front of your body and not behind your neck. The advantage of this is that it keeps your posture in better alignment (when done properly I might add). The disadvantage is that it’s easy to lose balance, you can’t go anywhere near as heavy and it can feel very arkward. We’re told to use our warmup weight so most people will be fine. The other component is lots of “Forward-Stepping Pulsing Lunge” – which are okay but could be problematic for anyone with dickey knees. As a rule I hate this track no matter what it is so hard to judge whether I hated it a little more or a little less!

Shoulders: “My Game” – Darude; Ouch. As expected loads and loads of side raises, and overhead presses. No surprises here (like Arnold Presses!) that I can recall.

Abs: “Forever” – Chris Brown; Lots of plate work here, no hovers/planks to speak of.

Cooldown: “Dare To Live” – Andrea Bocelli; I was surprised to like this cooldown, really pretty track and a great end to the workout.

Overall I give BODYPUMP 68 the thumbs up as I enjoyed it! I’ll add to this after I’ve done it a few more times. If you like more info you can find the sizzler and links to the songs on youtube (where possible) here. Enjoy!

On Saturday we released BC38 at a local gym – there were four of us releasing all together and we followed Dan and Rach’s example and used the “Heavyweight boxing” theme. Was awesome! We all dressed in Twins/Everlast boxing gear and if I do say so myself looked bloody great! Possibly the only downside is that we released at midday on a Saturday and the day was picture perfect so we didn’t quite have a full class… but all went off without a single hitch so all good! If you’re not already add me on facebook as I always have more pics of filmings and releases there 🙂 (click to enlarge)

BODYCOMBAT 38 release

BODYCOMBAT 38 release - left to right: Mel, Me, Sergio, Kiriwai

BODYCOMBAT 38 release

Everybody scream!

BODYCOMBAT 38 release

Track 2

BODYCOMBAT 38 release

BODYCOMBAT 38 release

BODYCOMBAT 38 release

BODYCOMBAT 38 release

BODYCOMBAT 38 release

BODYCOMBAT 38 release

BODYCOMBAT 38 release

BODYCOMBAT 38 release

BODYCOMBAT 38 release

BODYCOMBAT 38 release

BODYCOMBAT 38 release

BODYCOMBAT 38 release

BODYCOMBAT 38 release

BODYCOMBAT 38 release

BODYCOMBAT 38 release

Esquiva - Portuguese for PAIN!!

BODYCOMBAT 38 release

BODYCOMBAT 38 release

BODYCOMBAT 38 release

BODYCOMBAT 38 release

Hey guys, just added a page that has every BODY COMBAT track listing right through from release 1 till the current (at time of writing it’s BC38). I’ll be adding each release as soon as I get the info (already have about half of 39 but won’t list it till it’s confirmed…)

You can now find the full list via the link above or simply click here.

You’ll find BODYCOMBAT 3 listed even though it’s been withdrawn (always interested in more info on that if you do know more about it – specific details as to why it was deemed unsafe are sketchy).

If you can assist any further or notice any errors (I’m pretty sure they’re all correct but who knows!) then please drop me a line below, every little bit of info is appreciated!

So 5:00am this morning I was going through a few of the tracks from BC38 as I was taking the full release at a 6:30am class and wanted to be sure I made no errors (I’ve taught many of the tracks in various classes of the last few weeks but not taken the full release start to finish until this morning).

I’d had a fairly rubbish night’s sleep and I guess I was only semi-awake, in the lounge of my apartment with the intention of going through the DVD track by track so it was all fresh in my mind for class. I say intention as it didn’t quite pan out the way I’d planned. Picture this, I have a 42inch plasma on one wall and a mirror on another. So I’m facing the mirror going through the warmup. Upper body warm up, no problems. Lower body starts – stretch first. Into left knee step step right knee step step… all good. Into the first kick; side kick to the left. Smash! Plasma comes flying off the wall!

If I wasn’t awake before that I certainly was as I dove to catch my screen as it flew towards the floor! Thankfully I caught it – and it did gave me a funny story to tell the class. Morale of the story is I definitely need a bigger apartment!

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