REVIEW: TAPOUT XT – Part 2 of 2

The review continues!

By Jean Paul Fender

 

In Part 1 we got introduced to the new fitness program Tapout XT and what it’s all about.  Thus the review continues in the long awaited sequel and we now find out if Tapout XT lives up to the hype.  And as always the test subject is myself because I’m having a hard time finding any review out there that isn’t trying to sell it to you.  But kids, that’s always been the Dysfunctional Parrot’s mission:  To make the internet suck less.

COMPETITION CORE

Time: 47 minutes

This is like Cross Core Combat but with more focus on cardio and balance.   There’s also some seriously good abdominal/obliques action going on with planks and crunches.  CC is its own thing and I cannot compare it to that other program I keep mentioning so at least you get something new here.

Some moves will take time, such as the “Plank Rotator” ( hard to describe! ).   Let’s just say this was not my moment to shine.  But if you can get through this, your abs/core will have had a good day, guaranteed.

HIGH POINT: One of the participants is a dead ringer for General Zod.  Was he always there?

You really have to respect any workout that makes a Kryptonian sweat.

KILLER MOVE:  QUEEN BEE ( plyo jumps from side to side )

BUNS and GUNS

Time: 31 minutes

Hey, it’s just 30 minutes so it’s going to be easy right?  Ow.

You’ll need the loop band again or this won’t cut it.  But WITH it you will absolutely get what you’re looking for.  Buns and Guns is like three Ten Minute Trainers in a row.  The layout for this is 10 min of buns, 10 of guns, then a final 10 of buns again.  This is more of a maintenance workout as you can’t expect to make gun progress with only ten minutes.  But keep in mind you’ll have just done Competition Core or Muay Thai the day before.

KILLER MOVE:  BUN BLASTER ( Plank leg raises with the loop band around ankles )

MUAY THAI

Time: 40 minutes

Finish this and you’ll be qualified to yell “GIVE ME TONG PO!!!!”!  Whereas Sprawl and Brawl was lots of ground work, this is mainly knee strikes, kicks and elbow strikes in Muay Thai style.  That’s why you can pretty much ignore the recommendation for gloves as 90% of this is standing up anyway.  Be sure to tighten the gut during this as many moves won’t have an impact otherwise.  Do that and your abs will be on fire by the time this is over.

Some participants have bare feet and if you have a solid floor then that would be the way to go to get that authentic martial arts feel.  But if you’re on carpet you’ll need shoes for sure to prevent sliding all over the place.

KILLER MOVE: 4x 4x 4x 4x ( knee strikes, punches, kicks, squat strikes )

CARDIO XT

Time: 46 minutes

Despite everything good about P90X, if it’s one thing that was a raging pile of suck it was Cardio X.  When compared to Insanity, it’s a crime to even use the word “cardio” for that workout.  So how does Cardio XT fare against these guys?  I’m glad to say there’s good news!

It’s clear Mike is aiming for the max heart rate levels of Insanity on this yet the workouts are quite different.  Insanity is primarily plyometrics.  Here there’s a lot of punches, crouching, moving around…everything you’d expect from a MMA style cardio workout.  You get a few water breaks and you’ll need them.  Cardio XT does not let up so you’ll have no problem getting to your max heart rate.

The set is different in this than the other DVD’s with only Mike and 3 others doing this.  An afterthought workout perhaps?  No matter as the flow is still there.

KILLER MOVE:  K-90 ( sprints, mountain climbers, side-jacks, repeat until you puke. )

RIPPED CONDITIONING

Time: 41 minutes

This is a workout that can best be described as a total body attack with resistance bands.  High reps with bands and sinister pushups are the tools to go after the biceps, triceps, shoulders, chest, and gut.  And it’s not just simple curls or presses either.  There’s lots of explosive action in many moves that make the burn go that much deeper.

I’ll admit, I was surprised by this one.  I was seriously burned out when the the end came and spent most of my cool-down time making peace with my maker.

KILLER MOVE: I’s Y’s T’s ( shoulder assault.  Use a band that works )

ULTIMATE ABS

Time: 15 minutes

Ab Ripper X Ultimate Abs is crunches.  Really…agonizing…crunches.  And in that there is good news to be told: Mike takes care of the obliques better than Tony ( Ab Ripper X has maybe 2 oblique moves tops ) so expect some progress even if you’re a seasoned P90X grad.

Even though the name is close, in my opinion Ultimate Abs XT is a better use of your 15 minutes than Ab Ripper X due to the broader abs focus.

KILLER MOVE: GFO’s ( grap, forearm with a turn, other side…for what seems like an eternity!! )

BONUS DISK: Strike Training

Time: 5 minutes

This technically is not a workout at all, but it came with the package so I thought it was worth mentioning.  With the help of some MMA fighters ( one of whom is bare chested and wearing a cowboy hat.  Wait…WTF??? ), you get a quick tutorial on basic stances, punches, jabs and kicks.  It’s interesting, but really of no value unless you know who the Hell these people are.  Which I don’t. 

CONCLUSION

So is Tapout XT the P90X killer?  Well the answer is sort of complicated.  In a sense, it can be.  I feel you might enjoy this as much as the original P90X, but not P90X2.  Tapout XT is more of a RUSHFIT killer.  Given a choice between the two any rational person would take Tapout XT over Rushfit any day of the week as this is far better made ( no reused warmup footage like RushFit ), the instructor more likeable ( and understandable ), and the workouts much harder and diverse.  However, Rushfit, unlike this, is it’s own thing and not a clone of anyone else.

Another question that pops up is “Is this as tough as Insanity?”.  In terms of cardio difficulty, no.  Not much is because the only place to go after your max heart rate is the emergency room.  But that’s not a slap against Tapout XT either because it is still an intense cardio program nonetheless.  Plus Insanity has practically no resistance focus at all whereas this does.

And of course everyone wants to know, is this as tough as P90X or X2?  For me it wasn’t, but that doesn’t mean it was a walk in the park!  Tapout XT indeed has a high core focus but P90X has much more core+resistance training with weights so you’ll get better results with it if that’s what you’re looking for.  Tapout XT uses bands which can be difficult to measure progress and often do not push you to your limits like weights and a chin-up bar can.  But in terms of moving fast and being light on your feet, it is here that Tapout XT gets a win over P90X.

It is obvious from the schedule, diet plan, and heck…even some DVD’s in general that this program is heavily influenced from P90X ( and often completely ripped off from ).  In fact you could swap many workouts with each other ( Plyo, Yoga, Abs ) and not skip a beat.   Where Tapout XT differs is that is has a more speed cardio/resistance aspect to its training.  That means you won’t necessarily get huge guns ( not to say you won’t get them though! ), but you’ll be as fast and durable as all freaking Hell.  If you just happen to also be a martial arts enthusiast then this will be tailor made to your fitness needs.

Think of Tapout XT as a pseudo-hybrid of P90X and Insanity but with it’s own flavor of MMA that unfortunately doesn’t reach the height of either of the fore-mentioned programs.  That means high core, high speed, high cardio.   But at the end of the day, it is still a lower quality copy of P90X.  Therefore I bestow upon Tapout XT the rating of 3.5 Feathers out of 5.

TAPOUT XT2 REVIEW now available!

  

© 2012 – 2014, Dysfunctional Parrot. All rights reserved. No reproduction of written material is permitted.

 
 
  • Deadbolt

    DP — I’m playing around with Tapout within my X/X2/Asylum Hybrids — agree with all you said — it’s a little of everything the Beachbody crew is familiar with, but with a little MMA flair (which, for me, is a fun addition). I will say that I have been very surprised by the workouts in Tapout — they look pretty (relatively?) easy when scanning thru them, but they have all surprised me when I actually did them!

  • http://www.facebook.com/people/Misty-Dawn/1080822566 Misty Dawn

    I just want to add…. Keep in mind, if this is your first introduction to a 60-90 day program – IT MAY BE MUCH TOUGHER!! For me, being an Insanity grad (many times over – and having done many P90X videos) Tapout XT has its moments of being difficult (rarely cardio wise (max heart rate); although I haven’t done Cardio XT yet) and challenging – and I LOVE the martial arts aspect!). When I first did Insanity (and I was in good condition before beginning it) I was in major shock!! and pain!! BUT, Insanity has made this program soooo much easier; although it still is challenging. If I had done this program first, before Insanity, I would be in agony (especially the cardio and strength moves) – and be swearing it the hardest workout ever… Since it is post Insanity, well, I don’t feel it is the hardest workout ever, BUT, is still an extremely effective, difficult, and fun workout (imho). I am extremely happy with it, as I feel it is attacking areas I thought were really strong and improving them (although, for some of the workouts that are less cardio intensive, I will do Insanity warm up and stretch before hand – just to maintain the amazing cardio level). Great plateau buster for me, and those repeating many cycles of Insanity….

    I guess what I am trying to say is: If this is your first program YOU WILL BE CHALLENGED AMAZINGLY!!! If a P90X, Insanity, Asylum grad – YOU WILL STILL HAVE CHALLENGES…just be better capable of pushing through and succeeding with less agony ;-) As with all programs, how hard you choose to push is how much you will get out of the program…. Hard to compare this programs difficulty after getting into shape by another program – you are well equipped to meet the demands asked…thus, the question of how difficult it is becomes relative to how good a shape you are in.

    Great article though!! Love your perspective, honest answers and opinions. Very good review.

    God Bless!

  • Max the Wonder Pug

    I’m a 2x Insanity, 1 time P90x and Supreme 90 graduate (46 yrs. old). I’m currently on day 60 of this program, and it’s scary how much I agree with your reviews, especially “Legs & Back” and your suggestion to pick up different bands!
    Looks like about the only things we may part ways on are (1) the pace, which I think is rushed and takes away from the resistance routines. If you need to switch bands between moves, you’re basically screwed out of 1/2 the next move. Pause, and good luck restarting after getting set up! (2) I can’t stand Mike. He’s a blow hard, and as far as the Yoga routine goes, I doubt he’s ever even watched a Yoga workout before committing this one to memory (almost). I swap it out for Yoga X or something similar, as I have a few in my collection. (3) Last but not least, I find the production quality on the DVD’s cheap. The audio is obviously dubbed in at times, and when he “counts down” on a move, it’s never in sync! I could handle that from Supreme 90, which cost $20, but for $130 I expected better.
    Keep up the good work!

    • brandon

      What were your thoughts on supreme 90 compared to p90x?

      • Max the Wonder Pug

        Hey Brandon;
        I LOVED Supreme 90! The format is very similar to P90x, but the workouts are actually more along the lines of P90x2. A lot of combination moves, mostly involving a stability ball. (curls on a ball, etc.). Also, there is no stand alone “Ab” workout. You will do abs to start every resistance workout as their own set, and there is ab and core work in almost every workout.
        There is a Core workout included, but it’s not quite as difficult as either “Core Synergistics” or the 2 in TapouT. The Cardio, in my opinion, is actually better than anything in P90x. It’s a “Tabata” workout (you can look that up online if you need to), and it’s an absolute killer!
        The one negative I found was that the pace of the workouts makes it difficult to keep up. My solution to this was to write out the resistance workouts, then just do them as fast as I could.
        All in all, for the price it is a GREAT system. I made great gains in Core strength and I definitely learned some new “keeper” moves, and I found Tom Holland a breath of fresh air after Tony Horton’s non-stop ramblings!

        • http://www.facebook.com/mike.cather Mike Cather

          I like Supreme 90 more than P90X. I agree cardio and core fitness-wise it is superior. Tabata Inferno is the toughest workout within in either set. The speed of the strength routines is frustrating, though. I get Mr. Holland’s instruction and hit the pause button until I am ready for the next set. I would swap out S90 dvd for a P90X workout once in while when I just felt like taking my time for a change. I would tell anyone who is interested in P90X to save $120 and go with Supreme 90.

  • Brandon

    DP – love your review…used them to pick and choose which one on ones to purchase…great site…any interest in trying the supreme 90 day workout? i’d love to hear an unbiased opinion on it as it seems to have the same principles as p90x but $80 cheaper.

    • http://dysfunctionalparrot.com Dysfunctional Parrot

      Considering the price, I may give it a look sometime soon ( Body Beast on deck ). Hard to complain about it only being $20. From what I see it looks like the poor-man’s P90X!

      • Brandon

        I might go ahead and give it a try…finishing p90x2 in two weeks and for $20 why not. I have read that the chest and back uses dumbbell presses instead of pushups which I think I’d enjoy and the tabata is supposed to be a killer

  • http://dysfunctionalparrot.com Dysfunctional Parrot

    That tears it…it looks like I’ll have to do a Supreme 90 review soon!

  • lisaspups

    I have started using Tapout XT because I am really into martial arts and, so far, it is kicking my butt. All of these workouts, though, are rip offs of Crossfit, which is the toughest workouts I have ever done in my life.

  • Thibs543

    I just wanted to add that I believe he wants to add the workout gloves not because you need them for the ground or holding on to anything but because they are weighted and adds intensity to the strikes and combos.

    • http://dysfunctionalparrot.com Dysfunctional Parrot

      Good point. That certainly would do the trick!

  • Cheryl

    Great reviews. I just finished Rushfit. I must admit I tired of the same warm up and cool down six days a week. I’m a big GSP fan though. I’m loving Tapout and have P90x2 lined up for my next workout. I will have to check back and compare my experience to yours. It is nice to read reviews without a click here to purchase tab! I like Beachbody products but the coach thing really irritates me. Any interest in reviewing body combat or pump?

  • East Boy

    I like Tapout more than Insanity and P90X.

    Why over insanity? Insanity was tough, challenging, but not that fun. It wasn’t one of those workouts I was excited to do.

    Why over P90x? I think I like Mike over Tony. Plus, I agree — the cardio in P90X is a joke. I haven’t tried P90X2 though…

    However, adding some extra resistance when doing Abs XT or other workouts in Tapout XT gives me a really good hybrid. I’m looking forward to Tapout 2 as I hear it’s just as fun, if not more, than the OG Tapout.

    Last comment: Tapout has the 90-day test group with real people. That’ll keep you motivated to keep going. It’s good to know that those go-getters like Eric, Monet, etc. are doing the workouts really well

  • Downtown Oliver

    DP, Did you do 84 days or 90 of Tapout XT? What did you do? I am puzzled as to why they advertise 90 days, but the schedule has only 12 weeks on the calendar. For some reason I feel slighted by this. I am starting on Monday, March 31, and based on you review I think I should have some fun with it!

    • http://dysfunctionalparrot.com Dysfunctional Parrot

      Thinking back I probably only did about 40 days due to having to move on to reviewing another workout series. I’m looking into getting UFC Fit sometime in the near future and seeing how that turns out!