Company: Spartan Martial Arts
Tape Name: Life Stretch
Tape Cost: $14.95
Length of Tape/Time: 27 minutes
Number of Moves/Techniques: 40
Return Policy: ?
Experiences in dealing with this company: Excellent
The Instructor: Mark Zuganelis
Company's Address: P.O. Box 444, Oak Lawn, IL., 60454
Company's Phone Number: 312-409-7623
Web Page: http://www.orbitel.com/~spartan/video.htm
Email: spartan@orbitel.com


Primary Grading Criteria:

1. Production/Tape Quality: 10
2. Instructors demonstrated skill level: 9
3. Comprehension Score/Immediate Understanding: 9
4. Degree to which this will make someone a better Martial Artist: 9
5. Score on delivery vs hype: 9
6. Degree to which we would recommend this product: 10
7. Wasted Time ( The higher the number, the less " fluff" /repetition ): 10
8. Playback Score/Watching if over-and-over again: 10
9. Would I purchase more of this company's products: 10
10. Overall grade based on cost vs. Value: 10

Grand Total: 96 %


Secondary Grading Criteria:

1. Beginners benefit: Excellent
2. Intermediate benefit: Excellent
3. Advanced benefit: Excellent
4. Time to benefit: Increasing ones range of motion may take some time
5. The need to buy additional tapes to understand this one: None


Written Summary:

Hmm.....another stretching video, yet this one I found to be quite different. Mr. Zuganelis, in this short, well produced, 27 minute video, takes the viewer through 40 different exercises/stretches. That's right, 40 exercises/stretches in 27 minutes. Yet he does so in a quick and wonderfully efficient pace. Many of the exercises/stretches will have been seen by most students in their dojos, but there are a few they may not have. Personally I found no new ground-breaking stretches I hadn't seen before. But what I did find was a nice traditional daily stretching routine, one can do on their own, at home, without partners or weights, that's motivating, quick, and easy to follow, yet can be completed in under 30 minutes. Just sit down, play the tape, and follow along, it's that easy. This isn't your run-of-the-mill "You'll Be Doing The Splits Tomorrow" or next month tape, but it does show a good traditional stretching program, that with some daily consistentcy, could safely help many achieve the results they've been after. As in his prior tape, Mr. Zuganelis wastes no time in this one. He gets straight to work and moves quickly from one exercise to the next. I found his approach, minus the usual chit-chat found on other companies tapes, to be quite refreshing.

The beauty of this video is that it takes one through a COMPLETE stretching program, in 27 minutes, and it does so in what I'll call a follow-along format. What does that mean? Some stretching videos are 2 hrs long, or more, and haphazardly jump from one exercise to another, or show so many exercises, that to do them all, on both sides, would take 2-4 hours a day of stretching. And most of us don't have 2-4 hours everyday that we can spend just on stretching. Yet this videos quick sensible flow, combined with its follow-along format, provides a great daily stretching routine. Meaning....just pop the tape in, follow along, do each of the exercises with Mr. Zuganelis, and in 27 minutes you're COMPLETELY done, that's it. Then repeat tomorrow.

I don't understand why more companies that do stretching tapes can't create a quick 20-30 minute daily stretching routine, put it in a simple follow-along format so all a person has to do is play the tape, follow the instructor, and do so for 30 minutes every day. Personally, I know this is what I've been looking for in a stretching tape. Yet out of 4 other stretching tapes/programs I've seen, this is the only one so far that offers the viewer a precise training program they can follow daily, FROM THE TAPE, without fast forwarding or rewinding, that allows them to spend a minimum amount of time stretching. Unlike other programs I've seen, Life Stretch requires no equipment/weights, which I've tried using before with another program, and found was constantly hurting my back and knees. Nor do you need a partner, or several spare hours each day to get through all the exercises shown. And even if some other stretching tapes didn't want you to do all the exercises they show, many don't make that clear, and the ones that do, want a person to view the tape, write down on paper the exercises YOU THINK you should do, create your own routine from your notes, and do your own program from your notes. I've personally found stretching videos, produced in this manner, to be quite disappointing. To me, I'll get alot more benefit, from a stretching program, by poping in a tape, following the instructor, doing exactly all the exercises shown, in the order shown, and within 30 minutes, being done with it. Finally someone has done that. THANK YOU MR. ZUGANELIS.

Why can't more instructional videos have/use some kind of follow-along format so WE CAN ALL GET MORE OUR OF WHAT THEY'RE TRYING TO TEACH US? We all know it's consistent repetition that gets results, especially when it comes to stretching. But without a daily format that's quick, easy and simple to follow, most people will probably never do any kind of consistent daily repetition, and thus, never see the results they had hoped for when they bought the tape in the first place. How many instructional videos do you have, maybe even some on stretching, that were suppose to help you get results, yet are collecting dust on a shelf? Email me and let me know, I'm curious.

In my opinion Life Stretch's sensible follow-along format, combined with its $14.95 price tag, make this tape a MUST HAVE item. After having watched this tape, and seeing how easy anyone can follow it, with a strong possibility for future results, I'd be willing to pay DOUBLE or TRIPLE what Mr. Zuganelis is charging. WELL DONE Mr. Zuganelis.

Out of the 5 stretching videos I now have, this is going to be the one I use daily from here on out.

My recommendation, BUY IT NOW, before Mr. Zuganelis realizes he's charging far less than he should be.


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