This section of my website used to be dedicated to triathlon training, personal race results and certification reviews, like Turbo Kick. I am expanding it to include more generic health & fitness topics. Also, I talk a lot about "D" -- he's my husband (Dave Liu)!

Sunday, January 28, 2007

Turbo Kick Round 28 Workshop

It's been a while since I've updated this blog, and there have been many changes to my teaching schedule. For starters, I have given up my weekly cardio kickboxing class. It's been so long that I can't remember when that happened exactly. Some time in 2005, perhaps?

Without a regular class, I haven't had any pressing need to purchase any new Turbo Kick (TK) rounds, but given that I need to renew my TK certification very soon, I looked for workshops in the Bay Area, and also any specials they may have on purchasing rounds. Here are the two most surprising things I found during my research:

  • Inflation! Rounds used to cost $50 each, and now they're $60. I wonder if the price was ever raised to $55 at any point, or they just went ahead and instituted the $10/round price increase.
  • Older rounds are no longer for sale. I used to really like the fact that they used to have offers like "buy 5 rounds for the price of 3" (not exactly this offer necessarily since I'm doing this from memory, but it was something like that). This was great for somebody like me since I don't own the most recent 4-5 rounds, and it was a price effective way for me to catch up. It's also beneficial to Power Blue as well: since the marginal cost to them for selling older rounds is incredibly low, the margins for selling old inventory/rounds is extremely high. Maybe these rounds are still available somehow, but I couldn't find it on the website.

The workshop I attended was at the Shih Yu-Lang Central YMCA which is one of the few YMCA's in the San Francisco Bay Area that neither D nor I have visited before. D noticed that this is a traditional Y where they offer accommodations. I checked and and sure enough, according to their website, Single Occupancy (one twin bed and shared bath) costs $43.62 per night. This is extremely cheap for a hotel room in San Francisco, especially if you consider that continental breakfast and use of gym facilities are also included.

Most of the workshop was as I expected. The warm up has not changed much, but I think it's shorter than it used to be. I was familiar with most of the choreography (after all, most of the moves are based on jab, cross, hook, uppercut, knee strikes and kicks), but the wheel was new to me. I think it's a variation of a Capoeira move (reminiscent of the beginning of a cartwheel), and while it has been incorporated in earlier Turbo Kick rounds, I hadn't seen before. Another new move is the turtle which is a variation of an urban dance move. Now, during the workshop, I could have SWORN the master trainer said the name of the original dance where the turtle is derived is called "crocking", and that it was developed by some guy while he was in prison, but I couldn't find reference of "crocking" on the web (assuming I heard correctly, and spelling it the right way). Fortunately, another instructor (they call her "Dr. Paula" because she is a chiropractor) also mentioned that a movie/documentary called Rize has been made about this urban dance, and I was able to look that up.

Turbo Kick has also become dancier than I remember. There is a lot more clapping (eee!) and there is even A GRAPEVINE in one of the sections! Yes, you heard me, a grapevine -- the ultimate hi-low move that is further away from hard core kickboxing than almost anything I can think of. Since instructors are free to modify rounds to suit their own style, you can bet that I will not be grapevining if I ever teach it.

The two sections that I liked the most are (leg) strength and abs. In fact, I may use some of the moves at the end of my step class since I think they're great for conditioning and not specific to cardio kickboxing.

One of my New Year's resolutions for 2007 is to work out more. So far, I've been able to incorporate Body Pump (weights) into my routine by attending classes at the Pacific Athletic Club, but I'm struggling to find any interesting cardio classes that fit into my schedule. Even though I don't teach cardio kickboxing any more, I should prepare to teach one in case I sub for somebody else. So I think I'll learn this round, and by following the DVD and practising at home, it can double as cardio exercise for me.

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