Subject: I have found a DVD that I think you would enjoy
|Ashtanga Yoga - Beginners Practice|
Actor: Nicki Doane
Genres: Exercise & Fitness
The second DVD in a two-part introduction to the Ashtanga flow style yoga,this DVD covers breathing and standing poses,including many repetitions of two different Sun Salutations,various standing forward bends,and side ang... more »
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Mc Ashtanga (watered down Ashtanga)
(2 out of 5 stars)
"I teach Ashtanga yoga. Always looking for ideas, I bought this video intending to see how she explains and modifies some of the more difficult poses for beginners. I was both surprised and disappointed.On the negative side, her voice is really annoying. While narrating the practice, she sounds exactly like the character "Lilleth" from Fraiser or Cheers: cold, serious, unapproachable, monotone. (In the interview section, when she is just talking, her voice is fine. I wish she had just been herself for the practice part of the video).Then, the practice. Another negative. Ashtanga has a set series of poses. Always the same poses in the same order (the idea is the practice is the same so you can notice changes in yourself). She does not do the standard sun salutations but breaks them down into smaller components. OK, fine, beginner video. But I would like to see the option of just doing them AS THEY WOULD BE DONE IN ANY ASHTANGA CLASS IN THE WORLD, and that is not available.Also, the flow. Breathing is an important part of Ashtanga. 5 breaths per pose. No fiddling around getting in and out of position or it will be over. She states up front (but not on the cover of the box) that each pose will be held longer for explanation time. Fine. But again, give us the regular Ashtanga flow as another option.Modifications for beginners: I did not see a lot. This practice would totally discourage my beginning students who have tight hamstrings. She assumes everyone can put their palms flat on the floor but does not thoroughly explain what to do if you can't.Included poses: Standing poses. What about the rest of primary series?Hypocrisy: She tells the audience to relax (in that Lillith voice) but the sun is shining so brightly in her face that her eyebrows are pinched together. I can almost feel the tension coming through the screen! Positives:
This is one of the few yoga DVDs that actually tries to make use of the medium's capabilities. When a special logo appears you can click and get more in depth information about the pose (this would have been a great place for modifications!)The production values are high; The setting is beautiful and it seems professionally done.Overall:
I would not recommend this DVD. Someone new to yoga (unless they were already into ballet or something else that makes them exceptionally flexible) might be very discouraged.Someone who has done other styles of yoga already and is curious about Ashtanga, this might be too watered down. The real practice goes faster and is more flowing. And half the primary series is missing: no seated poses. If you have done yoga and want to learn the Ashtanga sequence and timing David Swenson's videos are much better. Swenson's production is not as professional the setting not as gorgeous, but his yoga is the real Ashtanga. And, he does give modifications for beginners!I gave it a star because the setting (Hawaii) is nice to look at, and another because of the excellent production. The yoga...not the best."
Simply the Best Beginner Ashtanga Yoga Videos
dennisrl | Acworth, Georgia USA | 06/23/2003
(5 out of 5 stars)
"I have been searching for quite some time now for beginning Ashtanga videos that are of a slower pace so that I can focus on alignment, breath and the locks. This and the companion video "Yoga Journal's Ashtanga Yoga Introductory Poses" are perfect. I have been using David Swenson's Short Forms DVD and although it is excellent I find the pace too fast to adequately focus on alignment, breath and the locks due partly to the shape I am in. I have recently been doing "Yoga Journal's Ashtanga Yoga Introductory Poses" and on alternate days David Swenson's "Yoga Short Forms" 45 minute routine.
The 1st video in the series "Yoga Journal's Ashtanga Yoga Introductory Poses" breaks down Surya Namaskara A & Surya Namaskara B in to shorter movements so each asana of the vinyasa can be focused on. The second video starts with the Sun Salutations and then moves through the Standing Asanas.
Nicki Doane, the Yogini on both the Beginner's Practice and Introductory Poses, is an excellent instructor and I look forward to her future releases. If you do not already own these 2 videos and want to get into Ashtanga Yoga I highly recommend that you get both videos. You will not be disappointed. Even though the pace is slower if you are like me you will still find both videos very challenging."
Great Beginners Workout!
Rebecca Jorgensen | MN | 10/10/2003
(5 out of 5 stars)
"I had been looking for the perfect beginners Ashtanga Yoga workout video and this was exactly what I was looking for! The instructor goes through each of the basic moves until the end when you put them all together in a continous flow. But don't be fooled by the word "beginners." It's a hard workout and you may want to try Hatha Yoga first to get stronger. But this video is great if you want to learn more about Ashtanga Yoga while getting stronger and more flexible (especially your arms!). The extras include a step by step guide to the basic moves, an interview with the instructor, an advanced demonstration, and the full workout. I definantly recommend this for all you Yoga lovers out there and for those who want to try a new workout!"
Very well done and good for beginners...
Jo Richards | Chicago, IL | 09/04/2004
(4 out of 5 stars)
"...because of the repetition, this is a very valuable introduction to Ashtanga Yoga. If you really want to learn yoga, it takes time, patience, and practice...all things necessary when viewing this DVD/video.
I've read and heard many criticize Nicki's voice as monotone and boring...and I almost didn't buy the DVD because of those reviews.
I'm glad I did buy this DVD. Her monotone voice allows me to focus on the many elements of each pose and not become annoyed by a "sing/song", chirpy aerobics instructor voice. I've taken a few introductory classes in yoga - Iyengar and Ashtanga and stretch regularly - and I still found Nicki's explanations very helpful. I especially enjoy being able to spend time in each pose and really explore it.
I also have a Power Yoga tape that does not provide any pauses, teaching, or other instructional aspects - but does zip through the entire Primary series at good clip. This DVD with Nicki will prepare me for that tape - while learning, I value the pace of this DVD.
This DVD is a beginner practice. It takes one through Sun Salutations A and B and several standing poses with time and patience and instruction. It does not go through the entire Primary Series. If you cannot complete this DVD - then you may not be ready to move on to a more advanced - faster - yoga tape IMHO.
If you're looking to be entertained by your instructor - this is not for you. If you want to learn Ashtanga Yoga - get this one."