Cuerpaso Natural Butt Lift and Tummy Tuck Review

The workout I wanted to love, but couldn't

Cuerpaso DVD. Laura Williams

As a long-time athlete who is drawn to athletic workouts inspired by sports, I was pumped to receive and test out the Cuerpaso Natural Butt Lift and Tummy Tuck DVD. The workout is designed and led by a former professional soccer player, Tadeo, and features exercises that use a soccer ball as a prop.

Tadeo leads a live class on the beach in Santa Monica, and his DVDs are designed to provide the same workout experience for viewers at home.

And while the workouts themselves aren't bad, Tadeo fails to recognize or acknowledge that his viewers at home aren't exercising on a beach, which presents a few challenges. On top of that, Tadeo's cues and counting skills are poor, and his incessant, condescending self-promotion was tedious.

I was also turned off by his seeming lack of understanding of exercise science, and his comments about the female body ("I hate cellulite!" "I want to tighten up the inner thigh area - there shouldn't be anything soft to hold onto there."). I felt as though he was purposely playing into women's insecurities - this just isn't a guy I would want to train with on a regular basis, whether at home or in person.

That said, I did break a sweat while performing the routine, and some of the exercises were new, different and fun. If you're comfortable muting the sound while following a DVD, it might be worth a purchase.

The Cuerpaso Instruction

Tadeo does a good job of demonstrating form, but his verbal cues aren't as clear. There were a few movements I couldn't figure out, and I probably would have assumed it was me being clumsy, but Tadeo's back-up exercisers couldn't seem to figure them out, either.

Tadeo also doesn't do a good job of counting.

He frequently says, "Just a few more of these," then the exercise continues for another minute. Or he says, "We'll hold this stretch for 20 seconds!" but two seconds later he switches the exercise. While he acknowledges that he doesn't really count ("Don't listen to me, I just throw numbers out there!"), it's confusing for someone trying to follow along.

The Cuerpaso Setting

The Cuerpaso workout DVD is set on the Santa Monica beach, so the demonstration is taking place in the sand. The workout also features exercises performed with a soccer ball. The combination of the beach and the soccer ball end up affecting the exercises performed in a few different ways:

  • First, exercises performed in sand are more difficult than exercises performed on solid ground. This is because sand is constantly shifting and moving, and your muscles must work harder to react and respond to the shifting sand. Unless you have a sandbox to do the workout in, the home-based workout won't have the same benefits as the beach-based workout because you aren't working against the challenge of the sand.
  • Second, the sand helps hold the soccer ball in place. When Tadeo instructs exercisers to tap the ball with their feet, or to do an exercise with a body part balanced on the ball (pushups on the ball, dips on the ball, etc.), these exercises are easier to perform on the beach than at home. This is because at home, there's nothing to help hold the ball in place. In fact, I found that I was limited in the ball-tapping exercises because the ball would roll away. On the DVD, the exercisers use the sand to hold the ball steady.

It doesn't bother me that there are differences between the live workout and the home workout, but what does bother me is that Tadeo never talks about or acknowledges these differences, nor does he offer modifications. For instance, I would have loved for him to say something like, "If you're doing this at home and the ball keeps rolling away, don't worry about it! Just mimic the movement instead," or "This pushup will be harder for you at home since you don't have the sand to help hold the ball in place. Do as many as you can on the ball, but don't be afraid to take it to the floor."

The Cuerpaso Workout

The workout itself is broken up into two separate options - a Monday, Wednesday, Friday workout and a Tuesday, Thursday, Saturday workout. I found both workouts to be interesting and different, offering a few new twists to standard moves and incorporating a little bit of hip-swiveling dance into the sports-inspired routines. The first workout was more difficult than the second workout, although I didn't find either of them to be overly challenging. But, had I been performing them in sand, I'm sure they would have been much more difficult.

I also really liked incorporating a soccer ball into the routine. I'm all about inexpensive fitness equipment, so it was nice to see the different ways a person could use a soccer ball to enhance his or her home workout.

While Cuerpaso is clearly marketed to women, I feel like Tadeo's style would actually appeal to many men if he designed his routines with them in mind.

The Audio & Video Quality

Given that the videos were filmed on the beach, Cuerpaso ran up against some challenges that wouldn't have existed in a studio setting. The changing light and blowing wind sometimes detracted from the audio/video quality. For instance, the wind would catch the microphone, making it more difficult to hear.

There were also some awkward cuts in the video, and while there were two or three cameras filming the routine, it didn't always make sense which camera was used.

The Summary

Personally, I might use the workout from time to time, but only with the audio turned off. The routine is solid and the video is clear enough, but, as someone with two degrees in exercise science and a lot of experience in the field, Tadeo's vocalization of scientific inaccuracies make me sad. He's touting himself as an expert, and I'm sure his workouts garner results. Unfortunately, the people who see results using his routine will likely assume that everything he says is true. I would exercise caution when choosing a Cuerpaso video workout. If you're in the Los Angeles area, maybe go try one of his live workouts before investing in the DVD.

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