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The Best Workout DVDs of 2009

We asked dozens of women to sweat through more than 80 workout DVDs to find the best of the bunch. Here are the winners!

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Best Boredom-Busting Routine

Shiva Rea Daily Energy Vinyasa Flow Yoga

Calories burned*: 112 per 20-minute workout
What you'll need: A mat
Why we love it: You can mix and match segments to create a perfect at-home workout. Choose between doing one or more of seven 20-minute athletic yoga sequences and combining them with bonus routines, including meditation, a core-toning session, and a gentle stretch.
Tester says: "There are tons of different combos, so it never gets old, and you can make the workouts more challenging as you progress." (168 minutes, $14.99,

*Calories burned are estimates based on a 140-pound woman.

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Best Dance Workout

So You Think You Can Dance Get Fit: Cardio Funk

Calories burned: 105 per 14-minute session
Why we love it: Former finalists on the TV show guide you through disco, contemporary, and hip-hop moves before each 14- to 30-minute routine begins, preparing you to dive right in. With the option of three speeds at which to learn the footwork, you can really catch on and break a sweat without feeling silly.
Tester says: "I had a blast learning each of the dances, and I was motivated to keep practicing so I could master every single move." (116 minutes, $16.99,

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Best Yoga for All Levels

Dallas Cowboys Cheerleaders Power Squad Bod! Body Slimming Yoga

Calories burned: 140 per 25-minute class
What you'll need: A mat
Why we love it: No pom-pom kitsch here: Kurt Johnsen, founder of the athletic-style American Power Yoga, leads a 25-minute and a 45-minute class full of flowing poses, like warrior I, II, and III, and offers modifications so you can follow along with the cheerleaders as a beginner or more advanced yogi.
Tester says: "The workouts were effective and fun without being overly complicated." (70 minutes, $16.99,

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Best All-Over Toning Workout

Gilad Total Body Sculpt Plus: Peak Performance

Calories burned: 384 per 45-minute routine
What you'll need: A mat, a pair of 3- to 5-pound dumbbells (optional), a resistance band (optional)
Why we love it: You can choose between two 45-minute workouts focused either on arms and legs or on shoulders, abs, butt, and thighs. Also, the combo of calorie-torching plyometrics, like jump lunges, and strength moves, like shoulder presses, effectively burns and firms.
Tester says: "Gilad has a ton of personality! He enthusiastically talks you through each move, so the DVD feels like a real class and you stay motivated." (90 minutes, $19.95,

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Best Time-Saving Routine

Personal Training with Jackie: Power Circuit Training

Calories burned: 128 per 15-minute circuit
What you'll need: A mat, a pair of 5- to 8-pound dumbbells
Why we love it: This workout feels like a one-on-one training session with reality-TV trainer Jackie Warner, and it delivers fast results. With one 40-minute total-body workout and four 15-minute circuits, each of which targets individual trouble zones, the DVD keeps you moving quickly and sculpts every major muscle group.
Tester says: "I was impressed with how soon I started sweating. Jackie makes every minute count, so I was finished with my workout before I could get bored." (57 minutes, $14.98,

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Best Pilates Workout

10 Minute Solution: Quick Sculpt Pilates

Calories burned: 37 per 10-minute session
What you'll need: A mat (comes with a rubber toning ball)
Why we love it: Instructor Andrea Leigh Rogers offers five challenging routines (ab shapers, butt and thigh shapers, total-body strength, flexibility, and standing Pilates), so you can squeeze in one fast ab-flattening workout or do them all. Plus, the ball adds resistance to your usual Pilates exercises, increasing the sculpting power of every move.
Tester says: "I definitely felt the burn, and using the toning ball made my entire body feel that much firmer the next day too." (56 minutes, $24.97,

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Best Boot Camp Workout

Weight Loss Cardio Kick

Calories burned: 171 per 20-minute routine
What you'll need: A pair of 1- to 2-pound and a pair of 3- to 5-pound dumbbells (optional)
Why we love it: The mixture of high-energy cardio (think punch-kick combos) and strength circuits in both 20-minute workouts keeps your heart thumping, and instructor Violet Zaki's proper-form pointers ensure that you see results from all that hustling.
Tester says: "I love kickboxing, aerobics, and martial arts. Plus, Violet's encouraging style -- and her fun Aussie accent -- really get you into the workout." (50 minutes, $14.99,

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Best Belly-Blasting Ab Workout

Exhale Core Fusion Pure Abs & Arms

Calories burned: 61 per 10-minute session
What you'll need: A mat, a pair of 3- to 5-pound dumbbells (comes with a resistance band)
Why we love it: The DVD is divided into five 10-minute routines (two tone-ups each for arms and abs, plus a stretch session), allowing you to select which trouble zone to target. The bonus band doubles the resistance you'd get from dumbbells alone.
Tester says: "Each workout was long enough so that my arms and abs were fatigued by the end, but quick enough so that I could still enjoy the session. Six-pack, here I come!" (50 minutes, $17.99,

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Best Butt and Thighs Makeover

Physique 57 Express 30 Minute Full Body Workout

Calories burned: 205 per 30-minute class
What you'll need: A mat, a thick towel or cushion, a sturdy chair, a playground ball (optional)
Why we love it: From New York City's buzzed-about leaner-leg specialists, this workout tones all over, but you really notice the honing in your lower half. Pulsing up and down while squeezing a ball between your legs firms your butt, thighs, and calves like nothing else.
Tester says: "I loved the 'Team, let's go tackle that cellulite!' spirit of the workout. I've never done moves like this before, and my legs definitely feel it." (30 minutes, $24.95,

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Best Calorie-Burning Session

Jari Love's Get Extremely Ripped! 1000

Calories burned: About 500 per 30-minute session
What you'll need: A mat, a pair of 3- to 8-pound dumbbells, a step (optional)
Why we love it: Two 30-minute sculpting workouts designed to keep your heart rate elevated plus a "push-up party" and a quickie abs segment help you burn the big calories. FITNESS advisory board member Jari Love gives move modifications continuously so you can adjust the intensity of your routine.
Tester says: "This workout kicked my butt -- in a good way. The exercises were intense, but not so tough that you couldn't get through them." (60 minutes, $14.99,

Originally published in FITNESS magazine, February 2010.

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What do you think? Review this slideshow!

tgustafson64 wrote:

I absolutely agree!! Jillian Michael's "No More Trouble Zones" Rocks!! I have been doing it for over a month now, and have lost 10lbs., and toned up a lot! I can finally wear shorts again without being self-concious.

4/12/2010 11:08:45 AM Report Abuse
meg_anr4 wrote:

I need to try some workout DVDs I usually just make up my own workouts with my jump rope and weights

3/9/2010 09:32:09 PM Report Abuse
shiningstar47 wrote:

yeahh jillian michaels is awesome!!

3/9/2010 01:10:08 PM Report Abuse
megaveggie1 wrote:

My favorite videos are with Debbie Rocker because you don't have to be a fitness guru to do them and they blast the weight off if you do an hour session. The covers to her videos make it seem like you are just walking but you change moves frequently and make your heart rate change pace frequently so the fat melts off fast. For two weeks I did her video every day and didn't change anything else about my lifestyle and I became a jean size smaller!

2/23/2010 11:13:00 PM Report Abuse
megaveggie1 wrote:

That is so funny! The person who thought there was an 11th video and that you had to buy something to see it. It's just an add after the top 10 videos.

2/23/2010 10:55:17 PM Report Abuse
peachy_keen_grrl wrote:

I'm also shocked Jillian Michael's "No More Trouble Zones" isn't listed! That and 30 Day Shred are absolutely my favorite most concise workouts.

2/22/2010 03:25:37 PM Report Abuse
anonymous wrote:

I think it is grossly unfair that your list stops after showing ten of the videos and does not let you see the 11th unless you sign up for something. Please correct this. I was about to place an order until I was stopped from seeing the last video.

2/22/2010 11:36:59 AM Report Abuse
moonlightvamp_9 wrote:

I agree. Jillian Michaels has the best workout dvds. They are hard but you see big changes fast and It really gets you in shape.

2/16/2010 09:40:57 AM Report Abuse
iofthetiger wrote:

Jillian Michaels for sure should be on here...not only no more trouble zones but also banish fat boost metabolism! AWESOME! My body has really shaped up!

2/13/2010 11:59:08 AM Report Abuse
simonsayziii wrote:

Charlene Smiley, I am right there with you i am 53 and some of the cardio videos i just can't keep up with. But i highly suggest Leslie Sanone's Walk Away the Pounds 5-Day Fit Walk there are 5 different work outs and alo Debbie Rocker's Walking for Weightloss. You will truly get a good workout and see results.

1/30/2010 09:17:00 AM Report Abuse
cheldy wrote:

charlene.smiley - you could try the Leslie Sansone Walk at Home program. I'm 52 years old and I love them. They're not hard to do but give you a nice workout.

1/29/2010 05:28:16 PM Report Abuse
melissa.smith86 wrote:

I can't believe Jillian Michael's NO MORE TROUBLE ZONES isn't on this list! It is the best workout ever, and has sculpted my body!

1/27/2010 01:23:56 PM Report Abuse
charlene.smiley1 wrote:

I am really trying to find a workout video for women over 50 years old. I'd like a little cardio plus strength training included, as I am now 54 and I just can't keep up with the videos of today that are geared towards the 25 year old groups. Thank you, Charlene Smiley

1/27/2010 10:09:51 AM Report Abuse

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