Workout includes an energizing prewarm-up, a standing warm-up, muscle firming, and lengthening mat work, a 6-minute deep abdominal workout that tightens the abdominals while it strengthens the back, and a restorative secti... more »on with relaxation.« less
Actor:Allison Nolan Genres:Exercise & Fitness Sub-Genres:Yoga Studio:Bayview Films Format:DVD - Color DVD Release Date: 04/26/2005 Release Year: 2005 Run Time: 1hr 30min Screens: Color Number of Discs: 1 SwapaDVD Credits: 1 Total Copies: 0 Members Wishing: 1 MPAA Rating: NR (Not Rated) Languages:English
"YOGA WISDOM FOR BACK PAIN AND TIGHT HIPS with Allison Nolan promises looser hips and a more relaxed back - and it delivers both in less than an hour! The DVD consists of two workouts: Level 1 runs 32 minutes long and is targeted at beginners, while Level 2 is longer at 54 minutes, and is meant for more advanced yoga practitioners.
Personally, I have been doing yoga for about two years, and I'd place myself in the "intermediate" category. As such, I generally stick to the 2nd level on this DVD. Level 2 begins with a gradual back warmup via The Cat/Cow pose, and then slowly builds in difficulty. Over the course of 54 minutes, Ms. Nolan guides you through a number of beginning to advanced poses, including Upward and Downward Facing Dog; Baby Cobra; Down Dog Split; Pigeon and Double Pigeon; Eagle Arms; Awkward Chair; Sun Series; and two Warrior Series, as well as a variety of forward bends and back bends. At the end of the workout, there's also a five-minute abdominal section with the Baby Boat and Boat poses. The grand finale is a restorative segment that employs a yoga block to help you stretch out the lower back. I've never enjoyed a back stretch so much!
Level 1, which I've done several times now, doesn't strike me as less difficult than Level 2, even though Level 1 is supposedly for beginners. In both workouts, Ms. Nolan has two models working through the poses with her; one of these modifies the poses for beginners, while the other follows along with Ms. Nolan, who is performing the poses at an advanced level. The biggest difference, to me, is that Level 1 is 22 minutes shorter. Thus, it makes for a nice, quick stretch when I don't have time to do a full 54 minutes. It's also a great warmup to the 30-minute Tae Bo DVDs that I sometimes use. However, the shorter workout does have one significant drawback: when you get to the more difficult poses near the end, you're not as warm and flexible, and it's harder to ease into some of the more advanced poses. (I find that my hips just haven't had enough time to warm up for the Pigeon pose in particular.) Overall, though, both make for a very challenging - but do-able - workout.
As far as the quality of instruction goes, I liked Ms. Nolan's teaching style. I didn't find her overly peppy or annoying, and I thought her cueing was timely. I found that her descriptions of some poses helped me to better visualize and achieve them. She also avoided the standard New Age drivel that so many yoga instructors spout. My only complaint is that she tended to cycle through Downward Facing Dog / Plank / Baby Cobra / Upward Facing Dog sequence rather quickly. Other than that minor quibble, I thoroughly enjoyed the workouts, especially the longer one.
Equipment needed: A carpeted floor or yoga mat is a must for any yoga workout. You'll also need at least one yoga block for the restorative stretch, and two if you'd like to modify the poses. Extra padding for the "sit bones" is optional."
Hard to follow
Squeak | Boston, MA United States | 04/22/2006
(3 out of 5 stars)
"Even the "beginner" workout is hard to follow. The poses aren't fully explained as you go along, and you can't really look at the TV while doing the poses. For the first 15 minutes of the 30 minute workout, you do the same flow. It's boring, but at the same time hard to follow because you have no idea what's going on. The instructor will shout out "Left leg back, downward facing dog", but she never told you to put your right leg back, so you're like "WTF?". Also, the camera angles are often bad...sometimes I need to see something at several angles to make sure I am in the correct pose, but it will only show one, and it's totally unclear what you're supossed to be doing. On the upside, this REALLY helped to lossen up my hips, which often get so tight that it is painful to walk. I felt great all day after doing this DVD."
Has some flaws, but does target the right areas
Elizabeth M | Houston, TX USA | 08/01/2006
(4 out of 5 stars)
"Yet another yoga DVD that could use better packaging design to get more attention! I tried this disc because I love hip-openers in yoga. I did the intermediate/advanced level, which was quite easy if you're experienced with yoga. All basic poses, and many that aren't advanced, modified (like modified eagle pose and twists). The instructor, Allison, wore a headset, which was a bit distracting and reminded me of previous forays into aerobics (since she has an aerobics background it's not surprising.) She could occasionally get annoying with the pep, and a bit shrill, but overall she didn't bother me too much (although when she said something was "the goal of a pose", then corrected herself by saying "of course there are no goals in yoga", I laughed.) Two assistants, a buff lady and gentleman, display the standard and modified poses, respectively. The room is a big, lovely and spacious studio with hardwood floors. Background classical music swells melodramatically at times and I wish it could be turned off. Ten minutes of abs are worked into the intermediate/advanced routine, which is nice. I had rented this routine and now I intend to buy it, to do occasionally. I loved getting to do both pigeon and double-pigeon pose in one routine!"
Kimberly K. Marchese | Colorado Springs, CO United States | 01/27/2008
(5 out of 5 stars)
"This is a great workout for the back and hips. This past autumn I fell and hurt my lower back. The fall left me with less mobility and I woke up every morning with soreness and tightness; also I was sore and tight if I sat too long. After doing this workout for about 3 wks or so I was back to my normal, mobile, pain-free self. This workout helped rebuild the area and helped me regain my flexibility. Bear in mind, I was in good shape to begin with, I've been practicing yoga for 7 years and I did allow myself time to heal after my fall. You'll want to speak with your doctor before you start any kind of excercise after an injury. If your physician says OK to yoga, this one is an excellent choice!"
Good Yoga Practice
B. H. King | Georgia | 04/03/2008
(3 out of 5 stars)
"This a good DVD to have in your library. However, at times the sound is a bit off and the music is a little "out there". Instructor does a good job providing details of each pose and how to do it correctly."