"Power Yoga" has gradually become the aerobics of the new millennium, driven by a no-pain-no-gain ethos that emphasizes sweat and strengthening over yoga's more subtle benefits. But this two-part, 40-minute Yoga Zone progr... more »am takes a more mild approach, hewing to the philosophy that the power of power yoga depends less on aggressive, strenuous poses than on conscious awareness of oneself and the vital link between breath and movement. Both parts rely on brisk, flowing repetitions of several vinyasas (connected series of poses). The first includes some standing positions (mountain, warrior I and II, etc.), lunges, twists, side stretches, and the camel backbend; those new to yoga will find the sequence alternating between the downward dog and plank positions to be fairly demanding, but there's nothing outrageously hard here. The second part again concentrates on the downward dog, one of the essential poses in yoga, along with twists, stretches (like the "blown palm," a standing side stretch), forward bends, lunges and so on. The virtue of repeating vinyasas-- i.e., moving in and out of several poses, one breath at a time--is that it reinforces proper breathing patterns, and the instructors do a good job of reminding you when to inhale and exhale, which is not so simple as it might sound. More warm-up time would be helpful--beginners and experienced yogis alike should do some stretching before starting--but once you get going, the DVD menu allows for easy selection of either part, or the various series within them. You can also do the practice without the instruction, accompanied only by the music. --Sam Graham« less
"This tape is not for those that have never had any yoga experience because the poses do flow at a continuous pace; but this is what power yoga is all about! I'm very pleased with this tape, and especially like the two separate 20-minute sessions, which are perfect for days when you don't have much time. I think this tape is intended for those that are new to poer yoga but not to yoga in general. If detailed beginning instruction is what you're after, try "Conditioning and Stress Release" or "Flexibility and Tone", also from Yoga Zone (their tapes are the best)."
I lost my tension in the Yoga Zone:)
Melissa P. Cooper | Indianapolis, IN | 07/23/2002
(4 out of 5 stars)
"This is my very first yoga workout product. I have nothing to compare it to, and maybe there are better ones out there, but this one had the recommendation of a friend who has been practicing yoga for several years. She swears by Yoga Zone, and promised me that there was no Eastern religious proselytizing on this DVD.Two months later. . .I'm still using and loving it. But for everyone's benefit, I would like to share how it works for me. I've tried it as my "only" routine of the day, and it just doesn't crank my tractor. I have to have some heart-pumping exercise every day or I'm awful to live with! So. . .on the three days per week that I do weight work or a shorter cardio routine, I don't do the stretches that close out those workouts. Instead, I pop this one into the DVD and finish with one of its two 20-minute-or-so practices, using it as an extended cool-down and stretch. My back feels WONDERFUL when I'm done, and the twists really get rid of the kinks in my shoulders and upper back. If I really focus on the breathing and postures here, I finish the practice feeling as mellow as I would after a full-body massage. Since this is an introductory tape, I can only imagine what a more advanced one would do for me. In addition to the need to be a bit warmed up before starting, I would also advise folks to build up their arm strength--particularly for the first practice here, where Al includes what I think are a LOT of plank poses. Maybe somewhere out there is a yoga workout that includes exercises to get in shape for yoga, but this one doesn't. So buyer beware.Still, the [money] I spent on this one has definitely been worth it. I know the routine well enough now that I can do a few poses from it in the privacy of my office whenever my back tenses up from too much sitting. Just a couple of minutes, and I feel better already. Cheaper than a massage, and just as effective. Not a bad deal, in my book.GRADE: A-"
reifiedbeans | Charlottesville, VA USA | 06/23/2001
(2 out of 5 stars)
"You won't want to do this routine more than twice. VERY basic, won't work up a sweat. Go with Rodney Yee or the other Living Arts DVDs."
reifiedbeans | 06/17/2001
(3 out of 5 stars)
"Just like the title reads this is an "introduction." First 20 min. of 40 min. very basic. Second part of work-out much more like a power yoga work out for beginners with out the sweat. Great for someone who has never done a yoga position. I bought the boxed set. If I were going to purchase just one of the DVD's in this series, I would purchase the Yoga Zone Total Body Conditioning instead."
Could have been "more"
CarrieB | Seated comfortably | 02/11/2001
(3 out of 5 stars)
"I liked the first part of the practice better than the second, because I felt the first part was more strenous and challenging. I wish the whole tape had equal intensity. For that reason, I prefer "Yoga for Weight Loss" and "Yoga for Strength and Endurance.""