Saturday, 3 April 2010

Juggling for Fitness - Jugglefit DVD review.

I have had these juggling DVD’s for weeks, and I have been putting off writing the review as my thoughts on how I wanted to approach it is forever changing but here goes....

I am very much a person who will jump in all guns blazing on any kind of exercise trend. You name it, I have probably tried it.

So when I saw an advert somewhere (I cannot for the life of me remember where) for Jugglefit, it didn’t take much for it to sell itself to me.

The website boasts these as the benefits, and there is not one that didn’t appeal to me.

Juggling is a truly portable workout.
Juggling makes you smarter.
Juggling sharpens focus & concentration.
Juggling is the ultimate in stress relief.
Juggling is an exercise that doesn't 'feel' like exercise.
You can juggle where you are, no travel required!
Juggling maintains and increases range of motion in the arms and shoulders.
Juggling is one of the best ways to improve coordination.
Juggling is beneficial for all age groups and body types.
Juggling helps ward off cravings.
Juggling makes exercising with family and friends easy.

I now own the beginner and intermediate DVD’s along with scarves and balls.

When it comes to the detailed bit I will review this in my own little way by commenting on each of the benefits. But I really should start with a little background.

I cant/couldn’t juggle when these arrived. I never could, though not for want of trying. I went through a stage when I was very young where I wanted to be in the circus and seeing as aerial acrobatics are not accessible to a six year old I tried my hand at juggling and never managed to pick it up.

My hand eye coordination has never been brilliant (hence struggling at six, though I have now learnt my technique was all wrong) but I do find that my concentration and coordination are worse during my periods of depression, so having suffered quite badly until literally a few months a go with PND, those skills are not at there peak.

When the DVD’s (beginner with the scarves and intermediate with the balls) arrived, I kidded myself into thinking I did not need to start with the scarves so jumped right in at the deep end aka the intermediate DVD

And soon learnt I really did need to start with the scarves - there is a reason the beginner DVD is named as such.

I don’t regret starting where I did because even though I didn’t pick it up, I spent nearly an hour (after having done the entire DVD) just trying to get those 3 little balls to like me. They still don’t. But it was exercise and it was a jiggle. My husband did try to take some photos but as I tend to concentrate with my mouth agog there was not a flattering one amongst them, so I shanty be sharing.

Even though I still have not got the technique down well enough for any time I can manage to throw all 3 to be anything less than a fluke the 3 balls have been somewhere accessible to me at all time, just so that when I have even 2 minutes spare I can pick them up.

Moving on, next time I wanted to watch an exercise DVD I put the beginner one on.

And I got juggling with all 3 scarves instantly. I find juggling with the scarves very different to the balls (control, weight, hand direction) so I don’t see juggling with the scarves as a way to build up to the balls but as something that is extremely worthwhile in its own right.

Now I am still not brilliant at the scarves but I can do it long enough to get into the zone, and it’s because of this little time that though I can’t comment on all the benefits from experience, I feel I can comment on the basis they are only one step away from where I currently am.

My thoughts on the claims:

Juggling is a truly portable workout – the balls even sometimes go in my handbag when I think imp going somewhere I will have the time to do it

Juggling makes you smarter – I can’t doubt that this and the next claim are true. its comment sense and I know from personal experience I really have to concentrate

Juggling sharpens focus & concentration.

Juggling is the ultimate in stress relief – When I juggle I think of nothing else. I will say that I did get frustrated in the start when I dropped a ball/scarf but that has lessened now, and I think it was a ‘me’ thing

Juggling is an exercise that doesn't 'feel' like exercise - Doing it you don’t appreciate the workout your core and your arms are getting. If the wii fit has juggling as a calorie burning exercise it must be so.

You can juggle where you are, no travel required! - agreed though if your like me space and privacy are a benefit

Juggling maintains and increases range of motion in the arms and shoulders - I don’t think I have issues with my range of motion, but after having spoken to my personal trainer in detail about juggling and the other exercises on the DVD she does say that this seems a fantastic way for someone completely new to exercise or having experienced some kind of injury to work on the range of motion and balance.

Juggling is one of the best ways to improve coordination - As my juggling is still not up to scratch I can’t say mine coordination has fantastically improved but I can see how it would.

Juggling helps ward off cravings - I do get engrossed at times so I can see how it could

Juggling makes exercising with family and friends easy - My daughter, husband, dad, sister and even my husbands friends have all had a go and saying your trying to learn to juggle is a talking point if nothing else.

As you will have hopefully got the impression, I am quite impressed with the concept of juggling as an exercise and there is nothing negative to say about the DVD’s. They are not a huge budget production, which to me is a bonus. They feel very personal and anyone at any level can do the entire DVD as all variations are explained in detail.  Though, they are not cheap if getting them to the UK means getting stung with a customs charge, but as Jugglefit have a youtube channel all you really need to invest in is some balls

I will be continuing to use the scarves for the more therapeutic benefits of juggling, and I will also be continuing to practicing using the balls a) because I am fed up of having to say I still cant do it b) I think my daughter will probably get there before me if I don’t hurry up (and she can’t even really catch one ball) and c) after having been told by my trainer there are going to be juggling/exercise classes starting local to her – I need to make my head start worth something if a juggling craze ensues

the DVD’s are available here and are priced as follows:


I was sent my copies for review purposes but this has in no way affected my review.

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