Finger Fitness: The Complete Hand Workout by Greg Irwin

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Tom Frame
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Finger Fitness: The Complete Hand Workout by Greg Irwin

Postby Tom Frame » September 9th, 2008, 8:44 pm

Finger Fitness: The Complete Hand Workout (DVD) by Greg Irwin $29.95
Running time: 63 minutes
Available at www.handhealth.com
Dealers purchase from Murphys Magic Supplies, Inc. (916) 853-9292 www.murphysmagicsupplies.com


On one of his broadcasts during the 70s, Doug Henning did a brief bit in which he demonstrated his daily finger exercises that kept his digits in tip top shape. I remember being impressed that he could bend each of his fingers individually.

Right around the same time, on Saturday Night Live, there was a shot of Jane Curtain holding her hands clasped together with index fingers pointed up and pressed together, as in This is the church, this is the steeple. She was curling her index fingers back and forth in unison, creating the image of a swaying serpent. Despite the sledgehammer phallic symbolism, it looked cool.

Greg Irwin is the Pharaoh of finger fitness. His promo on the DVD case states that he has been seen by millions of TV viewers on over 30 programs in a dozen countries. Appearances include The Tonight Show with both Johnny Carson and Jay Leno, The Guiness World Book of Records (Germany) and Super People in the World (Japan).

This DVD, produced in 2003, contains a series of exercises designed to enhance hand strength, coordination, finger independence and fine motor response.

Tech-wise, the production values are modest, but the sound and video are very good. The quality reminded me of training videos that we are sometimes forced to watch at work. You know the kind. Menu navigation is intuitive and easy.

Mr. Irwin appears to be an earnest, likeable fellow and this is clearly his lifes work. The man has no bones in his fingers. Shark-like cartilage perhaps, but no bones. He gives good finger. You can see him in action on his website.

Apart from his introduction, advice and closing remarks, we primarily see close-ups of his hands, while he is describing the various exercises. Thats what were paying to see.

Ever the aesthetician, Mr. Irwin wears a number of colored glove ensembles. Its like Flash Dance for fingers. At first, this frightened me. But I got used to it. Kinda.

At one point, a graphic disclaimer assures us that, All hand gestures are used for educational purposes only. Aint looking for beef in the hood. Know what Im saying?

The DVD begins with 2 minutes of voice-over endorsements and advice from Meg Robinson, Occupational Therapist and Certified Hand Therapist.

We are then treated to a 2 minute finger ballet by Mr. Irwin. This is a lovely, mesmerizing sequence! Its not a stretch to call it performance art. It is visually stunning. I was completely absorbed by the images and literally forgot that I was watching a pair of hands. Great stuff!

First, Mr. Irwin teaches us a few warm ups. He then demonstrates the 6 basic exercises: Bending, Folding, Tapping, Pushing, Splitting and Shuffling. Over the course of 5 Lessons, the exercises become more complex, and they are combined to create fluid dance routines. The dance sessions are set to a musical score.

Next there is a Practice Review, using all of the dances. That segment is followed by Extended Dance Routines. The DVD closes with another performance of Mr. Irwins beautiful finger ballet.

After practicing these exercises for only a few days, I am happy to report that my fingers already feel more flexible. But more importantly, I am much more aware of each of my fingers and their interplay. I know my fingers in a much more intimate way.

I enjoyed this DVD. Sleight of hand performers and manipulators can surely benefit from this workout. In fact, anyone who uses their fingers for fine, detailed work (craftsmen, musicians, surgeons) should use those fingers to buy a copy.

Recommended.
"There is more to consciousness than meets the mind's eye." - Frame

Steve V
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Re: Finger Fitness: The Complete Hand Workout by Greg Irwin

Postby Steve V » September 9th, 2008, 9:33 pm

Cool...but what does 'no beef in the hood' mean?
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Richard Kaufman
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Re: Finger Fitness: The Complete Hand Workout by Greg Irwin

Postby Richard Kaufman » September 9th, 2008, 9:56 pm

I was afraid someone was going to ask that!
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Bill Duncan
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Re: Finger Fitness: The Complete Hand Workout by Greg Irwin

Postby Bill Duncan » September 9th, 2008, 10:18 pm


Tom Frame
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Re: Finger Fitness: The Complete Hand Workout by Greg Irwin

Postby Tom Frame » September 9th, 2008, 10:22 pm

Thanks Bill.
"There is more to consciousness than meets the mind's eye." - Frame

Bill Duncan
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Re: Finger Fitness: The Complete Hand Workout by Greg Irwin

Postby Bill Duncan » September 9th, 2008, 10:23 pm

I live to serve.

Doc Dixon
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Re: Finger Fitness: The Complete Hand Workout by Greg Irwin

Postby Doc Dixon » September 9th, 2008, 11:19 pm

If the entire purpose of all the decades of work put into Genii Magazine by the Larsens and Richard Kaufman was to lead me to that youtube clip ... it was all worth it.

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Re: Finger Fitness: The Complete Hand Workout by Greg Irwin

Postby Richard Kaufman » September 9th, 2008, 11:24 pm

How frightening.
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Re: Finger Fitness: The Complete Hand Workout by Greg Irwin

Postby Steve V » September 9th, 2008, 11:45 pm

I'm very confused.....
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Steve V
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Re: Finger Fitness: The Complete Hand Workout by Greg Irwin

Postby Steve V » September 10th, 2008, 1:22 am

Okay, I put on my Squid hat and I think I know what the hood refernce is...
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Tom Frame
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Re: Finger Fitness: The Complete Hand Workout by Greg Irwin

Postby Tom Frame » September 10th, 2008, 10:01 am

Well done, Steve. In his live shows, Ricky Jay used to recite an old poem about the lives of con artists. The salient point of the poem is that con artists ultimately blow all of their money on alcohol and women. "Booze and the blow'ins cop the lot."

Thug translation:

"Drank and the breezies gaffle the scrilla."

Now all you need to do is sport a hoody and saggy pants,slap some bling on your grill (orthodontic jewelry), lose all respect for, and command of the English language, and you'll be ready to work the lucrative projects circuit.

But we digress...
"There is more to consciousness than meets the mind's eye." - Frame


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