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Gentle Fitness: A Video Exercise Program.

Rhinelander, WI: Gentle Fitness, Inc. (732 Lake Shore Drive, 54501; [800] 566-7780; 2 VHS video package with Gentle Fitness Guide to Exercise booklet--Video A, 54 minutes; Video B, 32 minutes; total package, $29.95 plus $3.50 S/H).

Gentle Fitness presents easy to do, sound physical workouts sitting, standing, and self-massage routines for individuals of all ages, including those with limited energy, strength, or mobility. These routines were developed in cooperation with a team of medical (physical and orthopedic specialists) and chiropractic doctors, rehabilitation therapy specialists (physical, occupational, and respiratory therapists), and exercise and wellness professionals. Video A presents four activity levels, three sitting (I, 18 minutes--primary goals include daily wake-up, mental alertness, and flexibility of the upper body; II, 16 minutes--primary goals include balance, reaction time, and flexibility of the lower body; III, 7 minutes--primary goals include strength, coordination, balance, and mental alertness), and one standing with support of chair, walker, wheelchair handles, or table; IV, 7 minutes--primary goals include spinal mobility, spinal massage, balance, reaction time, and circulation. Video B includes eight minutes of self-massage to release tensions and stimulate circulation and 18 minutes of exercises done on the floor or a very firm mattress to attain spinal mobility, spinal massage, strength, and tension release.

The Guide to Exercise booklet includes sections on injury prevention goals, considerations for doing the Gentle Fitness program, suggestions for individuals with weak or paralyzed limbs, guidelines for achieving the best individual workout, and a list of factors defining how physically fit an individual is. The remainder of the booklet consists of well organized, easy to use, and extremely valuable charts, indicating areas for which every exercise at each level is designed--body movement, flexibility and ease of muscle tensions (pain), strength and endurance, cardiovascular, scalp and face stimulation, and respiratory. Each exercise is numbered and cued to a specific section of one of the videos so users can individualize programs according to their specific needs and current levels of fitness--mix and match sections as desired and appropriate for the individual.

The exercise leader, herself an individual with multiple sclerosis, inspires confidence, competence, and active participation by viewers; she is appealing, creative, and innovative in her approaches and presentations. Participants shown in the videos represent individuals with a wide array of conditions, including those who use canes, walkers, and wheelchairs, as well as individuals who have had strokes, suffer from arthritis, birth defects, cerebral palsy, polio, multiple sclerosis, and various health problems. Viewers are introduced to participants at the end of Video B--after all, they are part of each viewer's fitness family! Total involvement, smiles of satisfaction, and feeling good about themselves visually demonstrate how these participants feel about the benefits attained from the Gentle Fitness program, the psychological and emotional contributions of a good and appropriate physical workout. This total package has many uses and applications, including in formal exercise/activity classes, at home alone, as bases for exercise/fitness leaders developing routines for their classes and persons served, and as part of the road back through rehabilitation and clinical programs.
COPYRIGHT 1995 Challenge Publications Limited
No portion of this article can be reproduced without the express written permission from the copyright holder.
Copyright 1995 Gale, Cengage Learning. All rights reserved.
wrenjay
Catherine Joppa (Member): Gentle Fitness: A video exercise program 1/1/2009 10:07 AM
I loved the article here because it described the video so well. I used the video for years. Then I bought the DVD when it came out. The DVD is a great program (Gentle Fitness) made fantastic! The format of the DVD lets me go right to the part I feel like doing that day. And it has additional information on it. My Gentle Fitnes program has given me a new life because I used to be so sore, tired and stiff. Age, asthma and MS combined to wear me out. But Gentle Fitness has made me more spunky, a lot more like my old self. I'm able to walk easier, I sleep better, and it's easier to cope with day to day issues! CJoppa

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Publication:Palaestra
Article Type:Video Recording Review
Date:Jun 22, 1995
Words:509
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