It seems like almost every celebrity and/or fitness guru out there has created their own line of exercise videos. Many of them have. Combine that with all the "unknowns" who have also created a line of fitness videos and what you have is a large abundance of videos to choose from.
Some videos could fall under the category of kickboxing, boot camp, Tae Bo, "hi-lo", step, total body, Latin dance, "jazzercise", pilates, yoga, "Insanity" or Zumba, just to name a few. Others claim just to target certain body parts, not necessarily falling into any one specific category. As if that's not confusing enough, then there are videos that claim to use certain methods from different types of exercises to produce an effective end result. The plethora of choices could throw off even the most seasoned fitness experts. So how do you know which video is right for you? Or better yet, is it right for you? Let's find out.
The first thing you should consider when deciding if you should do an exercise video is how much knowledge you have about the exercise you're doing. Now, you might be an experienced "exerciser," but that doesn't mean you are utilizing proper form and performing the moves correctly. For example, if you want to follow a weight training video, you must execute the exercises correctly. According to mayoclinic.com, incorrect weight training technique can lead to sprains, strains, fractures and other painful injuries. Same goes for high intensity workouts. So generally speaking, unless you've done your own extensive research or had a personal trainer work with you, taking on a high intensity cardio workout or any unfamiliar workout on your own is very risky and not recommended.
If you are a beginner, attempting a high intensity cardio workout is also not recommended. Not only will you be raising your risk of injury, but you don't even know how your body will react to something so rigorous. No matter what kind of exercise video you are looking to do, start out with a video meant for beginners.
If you are seasoned in a certain line of exercise, then taking on a high impact or complex video in the category you're experienced in is a safer option for you. For example, if you've been taking kickboxing classes for several years, and you know you are executing the moves properly (which also minimizes the risk of injury), taking on a kickboxing video is right up your alley.
Remember, exercising in the privacy of your own home may be very appealing to you, but don't be lulled into a false sense of security. There are no trainers or fitness instructors there to tell you if you are or aren't doing something correctly. If you're home alone, there won't be anyone around to help you if you injure yourself. Also, keep in mind that if you're not doing an exercise correctly, you may be defeating the purpose of why you're exercising in the first place, and you don't want that to happen.
NOTE: Make sure you get medical clearance before trying any new exercise, and/or if you are starting a new workout regimen. If you feel abnormal pain or discomfort, stop and contact your health care provider.