Pimsleur Russian Review: Learn Russian in Just 30 Minutes Per Day

By Ari Helderman
April 5, 2022

pimsleur russian reviewNext to total immersion, audio is the most powerful way to learn Russian. That’s why it’s such a great idea to listen to audio courses at home. While being in Russia,, or talking to RUssian friends would be more effective – this isn’t always an option. Today we’ll discuss one of the most well-known audio programs for learning Russian: Pimsleur Russian review.

I’ve done my fair share of audio courses and can tell you which ones work, why they work and most importantly: for what type of learner will they work. You see, some courses are designed with a complete beginner in mind. And other might be more suitable for those who need a quick ‘refresher course’ in Russian.

Getting the second type of course if you’re a total beginner will confuse you. The material will go to fast and you’ll feel as if the language is too hard for you. On the other hand if you just need a quick refresher course – then you don’t want to listen to basic sentences for hours at a time.

Pimsleur Russian is for people who are new to Russian. Or if you’ve learned Russian a long time ago. And now want to renew your knowledge – but at a slow pace.

Pimsleur Russian Review

Pimsleur Russian is an audio course. This means that you can play the tracks from your phone or PC (or car radio) and listen to the lessons that way. There are many benefits to listening to language courses – one of them is that you’ll learn at a fast pace.

Audio courses teach you not only vocabulary, but also the way a word is pronounced. You can listen to a specific phrase and then repeat it for yourself (or out loud). This means you can practice right away.

This works a lot more effective than doing language exercises from a book and reading about it.

But enough about why audio works so well for learning languages. Back to the Pimsleur Russian review.

Each lesson is around 30 minutes. And the program is designed so that you listen to 1 lesson per day. I’d recommend taking the weekend off to let your brain relax for a bit and so that you’ll feel fresh for the new week. But that’s up to you. One mistake that you should avoid is listening to a couple of lessons at once, and then not doing anything for several days.

The program is designed that you learn at your maximum threshold every day. And then sleep on the material and get ready for a new lesson.

Watch this video where I tell you in Russian (with English subtitles) 9 reasons why Russian is actually easy to learn.

Here’s what you’ll get with Pimsleur

Here’s an overview of everything the program has to offer you:

  • 30 audio lessons – each lesson is 30 minutes. You’ll hear words and phrases and have to repeat them.
  • First 10 lessons are introduction – in the first 10 lessons you’ll learn the basics of the Russian language. How to say hello, introduce yourself, order something in a restaurant and more everyday conversation.
  • Second 10 lessons are intermediate – you’ll learn more how to talk about yourself in more specific terms, learn how to exchange money and you’ll be able to understand most of what you hear.
  • Third 10 lessons are advanced – this is where you’ll reach the next level. You’ll learn how to comfortable speak about most things that interest you and that are going on around you. You’ll also learn the past tense and the future.
  • 1 hour lesson to learn the alphabet – the Russian alphabet is different from ours. In this lesson you’ll learn what each letter means and how to correctly pronounce it. A booklet is added for reference use during this lesson.

Main strength of the program

In my opinion there are 2 strengths of the program: audio and progression. The audio is well recorded and this makes it very easy for you to learn new words. And to understand the material better, You can also listen to the audio in your car so you won’t have to invest any time into your learning.

The second thing is the progression. You see, some courses start off slow and then become more and more difficult. And some are simply too difficult from the start and discourage you from learning.

Pimsleur gets it exactly right. There may be some points in the program where it’s a bit fast (or slow, depending on what you find tough). But in general each lesson builds upon the previous one. This ensures that you won’t feel overwhelmed and can learn at an optimal pace.

And if some parts are a bit too fast, or you were listening while distracted – you can simply repeat a lesson. There’s no shame in that.

What type of Russian learner are you?

We briefly touched upon tis in the beginning. But it’s important that you know what type of Russian learner you are. Are you a complete newbie to the language? Or have you learned some Russian before and want a refresher course?

And do you enjoy listening to audio courses and learning that way? Or do you prefer to sit at a desk and write everything down while you’re listening to the course. It doesn’t matter what type of learner you are – as long as you match your style of learning to the program.

Pimsleur Russian suits very well for those who enjoy learning with audio courses. And who are new to the Russian language. Or only know a coule of words and phrases.

If you already know basic Russian, it might be better to skip Pimsleur (or at least the first 10 lessons or so).

Final verdict Pimsleur Russian review

Pimsleur Russian is a great way to learn Russian. Especially if you learn well with audio courses and are a beginner. The program progresses nicely and you’ll learn a great deal of vocabulary and necessary grammar.

The lessons are well though of and the 30 minutes of each lesson is well used. You’ll learn a lot of words/grammar in each lesson – but won’t feel completely overwhelmed.

You’re probably curious where to get the program after reading this Pimsleur Russian review. You can get it on Amazon if that’s convenient for you.

Click here to buy Pimsleur Russian on Amazon & get started learning Russian!

P.S. Did you know that thousands of people have successfully used Pimsleur to learn Russian? Become one of them and order Pimsleur Russian here!

What should you do next?

Learning Russian does NOT need to be difficult. All you need is a solid plan that helps you improve the following things daily:

  • vocabulary
  • grammar
  • listening skills
  • speaking skills

That's ALL you need. If you can do this for a couple of weeks, you’ll already be making great progress in your Russian skills.

And the best part? If you improve a little bit every day, soon these practices will become daily habits.

And then you will start making progress on autopilot.

This means that learning Russian is now a part of your daily routine. So you won’t even need discipline anymore to get yourself to practice.

If you like the idea of this, but don’t know where to start, go here for more information.

About the Author

My name is Ari Helderman and I help people learn Russian through videos and blog posts where I share my experience.   I have been learning Russian since 2016. I often get mistaken for a native speaker these days, so I've learned a thing or two about what works and what doesn't if you want to speak Russian well.

Ari Helderman