BodyPump 84 review

Well, Team USA finally launched BodyPump 84 over the weekend. We’ve been excited about this release for quite a while, and with good reason. Before we even pressed play to get Track 1 underway, Barb and I knew this was going to be one of our best launches yet.

Warmup: In past releases, the warmup tracks have been all over the place, so to speak, with funky transitions that gave some participants trouble. This one produced a fun song and got the participants fired up for the workout ahead. The energy in the room was through the roof, and the choreography was simple to follow.

Squats: Oh, another Adele cover! I suppose Les Mills can’t get enough of her music! This one, was probably the best one yet. There were only two sets of work, but they are long and powerful, as the track only has one recovery.  Normally, Adele covers don’t get participants riled up, but this one was a little more upbeat. The choreography is certainly a challenge, and we noticed a lot of people increase their weight! I’ll be keeping this one around for a lot longer than the two-week minimum!

Chest: This is arguably one of the best songs of this release. Everyone knows Welcome to the Jungle, and we absolutely heard our chests screaming throughout five superb sets! The second I pressed play, everyone in the room started cheering. A fun song like this helps the participant absorb the tough blocks of work, especially that fifth set where lots of slow work finishes the chest muscles off. Another one I’ll be keeping around for a long time!

Back: This one reminds me of some of the  older back tracks as far as the song goes. It’s one you’d typically hear at a cheerleading competition, not a BodyPump class, but the choreography more than makes up for it! The first set is the toughest with a LOT of widerows – it’s two minutes long – but the pressure builds throughout the track and the last two short sets put us over the top. Nothing fancy choreography wise, but a solid back track!

Triceps: Here come the new innovations! A lot of people worldwide have complained about this song, feeling the lyrics were too dirty, but the choreography makes up for it. This is a track where a lot of participants went heavier, as we had no extensions with the barbell, and we’re using the upper body to tone the triceps with lots of presses. The new move, the kickback row, is a killer at the very end. The participants had fun with the song as well, as it gave them a feeling of being in the club.

Biceps: More new stuff! This one proved to be a challenge, and a lot of people tried it with plates, which was impressive! It is not as affective with a barbell, which I used to show them that option as Barb was teaching that track, so you’ll feel it more by using plates. I think I’ll be keeping this one around for a while. This is probably the toughest track of this release!

Lunges: More jump squats! I love the fact that these aren’t going to go away for a while! This time, we don’t hit them until the very end when our legs are screaming with pain, which makes them all the more challenging. There aren’t a lot of barbell squats or lunges, but there is nearly two minutes of total-body work, which is where the challenge lies. A few folks tried the plate-front squat when we hit the weighted squats, but it’s easier to do if you load your bar up. Personally, I went heavier than my normal lunge weight and felt it a lot more.

Shoulders: My favorite track in BodyPump, but a lot of you folks know that already! This is an old RPM tune, and a great one at that! Shoulders are typically the peak of a BodyPump class, and this one got us to the summit and then some. There are only 26 pushups, but they are all in the beginning. A lot of people stayed on their toes which was impressive, and the plate work proved to be a huge challenge. The bar work is short and sweet, and a lot of people challenged themselves by going heavier.

Abdominals: Not a whole lot going on in this core track. Three short sets with quick transitions, so we had to be on our toes. The song wasn’t too too bad, but the choreography was so-so. The walking hovers at the end really nailed us and capped off a great class!

BodyPump 84 was a fantastic release, and as always, team USA filled the room. The Sunday morning class was full as well!

Barbara Cookson (left) and Ryan McLaughlin provide some post-class entertainment with elevated pushups following Union Street Athletics’ BodyPump 84 launch on Saturday morning.

Barbara Cookson and Ryan McLaughlin strike a pose before launching BodyPump 84 at Union Street Athletics on Saturday.

Ryan McLaughlin

About Ryan McLaughlin

BDN sports reporter Ryan McLaughlin grew up in Brewer and is a lifelong fan of the New England Patriots, Boston Red Sox, Boston Celtics and Boston Bruins. In "The Boston Blitz" he'll be sharing his perspective with BDN readers about what's happening on the Boston professional sports scene.