Sunday, March 13, 2011

BodyAttack 101: 04 Plyometric

"Think of it as the last 5 minutes of the first half of a game." -Lisa Osborne

Alright! Heartrate is up, calories are burning... now we turn the fire up to incineration. This track is hardcore, designed to push you to your limits. It's the final challenge of the first cardio block, and a good time to measure your fitness levels. This track also features another semi-signature Attack move, loved and equally hated by many: the Plyometric Lunge. If you're not familiar with this move, essentially you jump quickly from a lunge on one leg to the other, back and forth. This is usually done in a set of 8 (4 on each leg).

BodyAttack 3D classifies track 4 as sports inspired, and most of the moves are definitely sports training moves. In addition to plyo lunges, we have lunge-leaps, shuffles, squat jumps, high knee runs, skater jumps, step-jumps... basically all moves designed to push your heart rate to the (safe) extremes. There's usually not time to stop and think... just keep moving until the music stops.

Here are my top 10 Plyometric tracks!
  1. 50 - C'Mon Ride It (The Train) - Forward March! I absolutely love this track. It's got a nice mix of moves (3-step skaters, step-knees, leap-lunges, plyo lunges, high knee runs and double hop curls). The choreography fits perfectly with the music, and there's lots of room for audience participation (HEEEEEY!!!! HOOOOO!!!!). And to top it off... positive reinforcement for the subconscious! I think I can, I think I can, I think I can, I think I can... I never tire of this one!
  2. 56 - Aluba - It's tricky!!! Now we say... tricky tricky tricky tricky!!! In a volleyball theme that is executed superbly, this track features lots of jumping, setting, and spiking of an invisible volleyball... and no plyo lunges! It's nice to bust it out for something non-plyo lungeish, plus it's got spunk and attitude. Any volleyball players will absolutely love it, as will anyone who's feeling sassy that day! Perfect for me ;)
  3. 61 - The Question Is, What Is The Question? - How do you do??? Uh-huh!!! I thought "why not?" na na na na... Although everyone is all rave about Tubthumping (see below), I think this is one of the most challenging plyo tracks there is. We start with repeater knees, then proceed into a progressing combos of double hop-curls and plyo lunges. Two-non stop rounds of this which runs you into the ground followed by one final round of nothing but plyo lunges. The key is the music, which pushes you (or me at least) to my best! I don't do it all the time, but anytime I want a challenge, I pull it out! (Anyone else notice that 61 has made every list thus far? No worries... that will come to an end eventually LOL. But it is a very different release!)
  4. 68 - Are You Gonna Go My Way - The teaser says this is another volleyball inspired track, and granted it does have a step-jump-run back combo. Other than that, even though I don't see volleyball (nothing can compare to Aluba), the song is fantastic, the square-high knee combo and alternating plyo-squat jumps push your heart rate up. The beat of the song just really builds up for an explosion. BTW... does ANYONE else notice how almost every plyo track ends with 4X8 plyo lunges??? It's seriously mind over matter!!!
  5. 46 - What's Up - A remix of the 4 Non-Blondes hit. I really like the remix, and the choreography is simple. Basically alternating corner high knee runs, followed by a progression of step knees, double plyos, and single plyos. There are a few fun moments for some fitness magic, and almost everyone knows this song, so they can all sing along. A lot of older instructors think this track is really really hard. Personally, I don't think so... it does feature more plyo lunges then most, but I find alternating high jumps and low moves, such as in 61, is what pushes the heart rate up so high. Regardless, I like this one, and I'm one of only 2 instructors who teaches it, so I can put my stamp on it!
  6. 71 - Swing - Oh my gosh... the first time I did this track I nearly died. It's definitely hard, but simple and effective. There are two combos. The first consists of skater runs forward, high knee runs back, plyo lunges, and squat jumps. The second is a progression of triple squat jumps, adding in side-to-side movement and then extending the arms. All of my peers and I really enjoy this one! Another chance to get fitter!
  7. 60 - Yeah - Similarly to 50, it's got a nice variety of different moves and a song that everyone knows. Anytime the class can participate I consider it a good thing, even though during track 4 they often don't due to fatigue. I also really like the fitness magic "DJ" moments in here.
  8. 52 - Popcorn - Old school sometimes is the best... if it ain't broke, don't fix it right? One of the more "classic" track 4 movement progressions is step knees into lunge leaps into plyos. This track features that combo, along with a high knee-plyo combo and 4 rules to keep you in check! One thing about this which is rare for me... the song has almost no lyrics, and I still like it!
  9. 65 - Tubthumping - I'll admit, the main reason this track is on this list is because it is the toughest plyo track there is... and as such, it's a challenge! I have yet to do this one in all high, which is something I'm working on now! Plyo lunges along with touchdown-jumps, knee repeaters, shuffles and just all things challenging! The touchdown-jumps paired with almost no breaks are what make it so challenging! The song isn't my favorite, but the challenge factor makes it work!
  10. 62 - Party People - Another break from plyos! This one focuses on skaters. There's single skaters and a 3-step power/skate that progresses with extra height. Throw in some fun clock arms, a siren, ski-jumps and tuck jumps, and you've got a very non-typical track with some fun challenges! Another one with no lyrics makes the cut... who woulda thought???

GUESS WHAT!!! Your first cardio block is done! Give yourselves a pat on the back because many people don't make it this far... especially beginners! Congrats to all of you. Next up: upper body conditioning!


  1. Interesting top ten. Very different to my taste. Aluba, for instance, is at the very bottom on my list. It's also one of the easiest plyo tracks. Apache Rocks The Bottom (58) could be harder than Tubthumping. Rock Beat (55) also ranks among the toughest, as does I Can't Stand It (53). Then there's a fun, but also tough Everybody On The Floor (54) - love how Bevan counts explosive lunges - one, two... five, sex. ;-)

  2. I love Rock Beat! It was one of a few that almost made the cut but didn't :). I can't stand 54!!! I hate the song PLUS it's really tough... What's your favorite???

  3. Actually I don't have a favorite. Besides the ones I've already mentioned, I really like your first choice - C'Mon Ride It (The Train), then Popcorn and What's Up, which IS tough when done all high with full ROM.

  4. Great choices!! Like 5 out the 10 tracks listed here (and they are hard) too and different as well. What's Up would be at the top of my list.
    Rewind this music (48), The Riddle (63) and Rock It (67) are tough for me. With I Can't Stand It (53), Everybody on the Floor (54) and Rock Beat (55); agreed with the toughness and goes on the favorites!

    Tubthumping is tough, but don't like the song. Any song that doesn't involve plyo lunges goes at the bottom of the list. 3, 2, 1, 0 and Aluba are the 'easier' favourite tracks.