Chisel Agility

In Coaching, Fitness Programs, Reviews by Dale HillLeave a Comment

A challenging cardio workout that will help you move quickly, improve coordination, and create greater stabilization 

Building a strong, sculpted body doesn’t require hours spent working out—just an expert approach. And with The Master’s Hammer and Chisel, seasoned trainers Sagi Kalev and Autumn Calabrese have compiled their best, most efficient techniques into 30- to 40-minute resistance-training workouts to help you craft a powerful, perfectly defined physique in just 60 days.

Throughout the entire 60 days, you’ll focus on Stabilization, Strength, and Power to rapidly build, sculpt, and refine your physique. Combine this training with proven portion-control nutrition-the way Sagi and Autumn do in The Master’s Hammer and Chisel-and you’ll build a body that’s strong, chiseled, and defined.

As I  embark on my own 60-Day Journey with The Master’s Hammer and Chisel, I will be reviewing each workout as they present themselves in the program calendar. I will add my own insights and observations about the workouts; the comments I make are my own as an Independent Certified Personal Trainer and do not necessarily represent the Celebrity Trainers or Beachbody. Full disclosure, I am also an Independent Team Beachbody Coach and a distributor of this program and all other Beachbody products. I hope the information I provide is beneficial in your personal fitness journey.

Chisel Agility735x1102Chisel Agility is a fun workout that will get your heart rate up and have the sweat pouring in no time at all. It consists of  2 rounds of 10 exercises with a 60 second break between rounds. To get the most out of this workout, stay on tempo with Autumn and the cast, moving from one exercise to the next without a significant rest will give you a great cardiovascular benefit.

Chisel Agility draws on Speed, Agility and Quickness training  to help you go faster, stop quicker and be more responsive to your environment.  SAQ training fine tunes your nervous system to react and respond more efficiently to the demands placed on your body by the environment around you.

Speed is the ability to move your body in one direction as fast as possible. While you’re not going to be completing sprint drills in this workout, depending on the space you have, you may have the opportunity to work on your stride length and rate to complete certain moves faster.

Agility is your ability to stop, start and change directions quickly at various speeds while maintaining correct posture and balance. Footwork drills like Circle In and Outs and the Grapevine shuffle are typical agility drills.

Quickness is your ability to react to outside stimulus and change your body position accordingly. Pay attention to visual, auditory and physical cues, take it all in and make the right movement decision based on what you’ve processed. There are a few of these ‘heads up’ drills where you’ll listen for Autumn’s cues and have to respond accordingly.

Sequencing all of these various drills together with minimal rest will give you an invigorating cardio workout as well. Pay attention to your form, listen for the cues and be quick on your feet. Above all, have fun, you’re going to work on this one but it’s a good change-up from the resistance workouts you’ve had to this point.

High knees are simple and straightforward, aim for bringing your knees up at least to waist height. Move forward doing high knees with your feet at hip width. When you change direction and move backward, open your legs up so your knees are pointing outward as you high knee in reverse gear (this part of the move feels suspiciously like ‘Wacky Jacks’ from Cardio X in P90X)

I love these quickness drills, Tony Horton uses them in the P90X series and if I recall correctly Shaun T. uses them in FOCUS T-25. Autumn has a couple of them in this workout and they require you listen and react. Begin Plank X Taps in a high plank position, Autumn will call out 1 of 4 directional commands and you respond by tapping the right limb in the right direction on cue. The pace picks up as you go, so you have to pay attention. The commands are simple and there are only 4: Right-Front, Left-Front, Right-Back, Left-Back, easy right?

O.M.G. This one brought back some pretty horrible memories of doing aerobics classes in the 80’s where not only was I the only guy in class, but I was THE most uncoordinated person in the group! For some reason I had a mental block with the grapevine move, so I was more than a little anxious when I saw it pop up in this workout. The Grapevine Shuffle is a footwork drill, it’s quick feet following a specific pattern ‘grapevining’ in one direction then doing a low shuffle side step back across the room. At mid point you change up the directions. Thankfully my old mental block against this move was gone and I actually came to enjoy this move.

Another heads up quickness drill where you’ve got to pay attention to Autumn’s commands. The Lateral Squat Hop is pretty simple, you’re either going to hop to the left or to the right – you just have to wait for the call and respond in the correct direction. Get everything out of this workout by staying low in your squat and respond with a quick and powerful hop in the appropriate direction on cue.

Lunge. Lunge. Lunge. That’s exactly what you get in this move. 30 Seconds on one side followed by 30 Seconds on the other, the Multidirectional Lunge consists of stepping into a forward lunge, come back to center and immediately step into a side lunge, return to center and go back into a reverse lunge. The agility portion of this comes from keeping the lunging leg off the ground until you set it down into the lunge (don’t tap or set your foot down as you transition between each lunge). I find this is actually a brief respite in the cardio that you’re getting from this workout, it’s a chance to slow down and focus on the position of your lunges.

The Rotating Squat Jump is sure to get your heart rate back up; this is basically a 180 degree jump over one shoulder then a return coming back the same way. As with all jumping movements, you want to jump high and land softly. Drop down into a squat to help load your legs and explode up as you rotate your body. A tip for getting the rotation on this move is to lead with your eyes, look where you’re jumping and your body will follow.

The Skater Triangle will challenge you balance as well as your leg strength and agility. To get the most out of this move always have one foot off the ground; it may take one or two passes through the pattern to get it down, but once you do you can work on increasing the distance of your jump.

This is a variant of what Tony Horton called the ‘Mary Katherine’ lunge in  P90X Plyometrics. In the Diagonal Lunge Jump you start in a forward lunge at a 45 degree angle to the right and change directions to a forward lunge 45 degrees to the left by adding a plyometric jump between the two lunges, changing direction during the jump. Land softly, gather yourself and repeat changing directions back to the right.

The modification for this move is to take the jump out and step into the diagonal lunge with a slight hop at the transition between directions.

Circle In and Out is my favorite agility exercise of this workout, it’s simple ‘fast feet’ work and builds coordination and speed.

The final exercise of the round is a Directional Squat Jump, another quickness response exercise where you need to listen to the directional cues from Autumn, similar to the lateral squat jump, this one will have you moving left and right in addition to forward and back. If you lack the space to execute a full range jump in any particular direction, decrease the depth of your squat, increase the height of your jump and shorten the ground that you cover in any one direction.

Get The Master’s Hammer and Chisel Today!