Using Video To Improve Workout Results

improve workout results

improve workout resultsIf you are looking to improve your workout results, whether it be calorie burn, or increased endurance or better form, then we have a very simple technique that just might work for you. And it’s probably in your pocket right now. We’re talking about using video to improve workout results.

If you have a smartphone with video, then you are in business. But even a point and shoot digital camera will work if it has a video module.

Let’s use me for an example. I follow the Insanity workout program as a regular part of staying in shape. A few days ago, I wanted to check my form on one of the exercises, so I simply set my iphone on the desk, hit record and captured various portions of the workout as I was doing it. Some very interesting things begin to happen with the video running:

1) You’ll notice almost immediately you are putting more effort into the workout, as if you know someone is watching you. The video actually served as a motivator to get more out of the workout. Now this is interesting because you’ve done your workout probably 100 or more times, but sure enough, you’ll find you have more in the tank with the video on than without.

2) Your calorie burn will probably go up with the video on vs. no video.  For me, all the previous times I’ve done that workout, I typically would burn around 325-340 cals in the 38 minute workout. While the video was on, I burned 400 in the same period of time.

3) You are able to check your form during the workout. This is quite helpful as you can adjust almost immediately what you are doing, in real time during the workout.

4) Post workout you can go back and watch your workout again, gathering additional info on areas you need to improve upon.

5) Motivation! You’ll be surprised to see you are doing better than you thought. This serves as a great motivator to work even harder.


It’s probably not necessary to video yourself every time, but perhaps once a week to check on form. But I am actually considering keeping a video diary of my workouts – maybe do an entire week and look for improvements throughout the week. It really doesn’t matter what type of workout you do – whether it’s high intensity like Insanity, or more moderate exercise such as yoga, Pilates, even just plain calisthenics. Try taking a video and see what happens.

Finally, some quick tips I learned from taking the workout videos:

1) Try to light the room as best you can. Either with available lighting in the room, or, set your flash to the On position on your video camera. By providing more light, you can see more detail in terms of body definition, movements, etc.

2) If using a camera phone, be careful to set it up in a way so it won’t fall to the floor.

3) If you follow a workout DVD program, make sure the volume is up loud enough so you can hear it on the video. Doing so provides further feedback on how you are doing in relation to the DVD instructor.

Try it and let us know what you think!

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