Lately, I’ve been following Shiva Rea’s Daily Energy DVD for all my yoga sessions. As with all of Rea’s DVDs, this one contains a “yoga matrix” that allows you to combine individual segments into your own sequence. There are seven 20-minute segments with various themes: “Earth” for grounding poses, “Shakti” for relaxing poses and so on. Also included are short opening and closing segments and one guided shavasana. It’s very easy to follow, nicely paced, and has a voiceover track that can be turned off and on for instruction and cueing. Production on this is less exotic (no White Sands National Park or Maldives Island) but still, very pretty. More importantly, the cinematography supports the yoga.
Daily Energy is a little different from her Fluid Power and Lunar Flow Vinyasa DVDs and perhaps more accessible; I’d say it feels more like her Flow Yoga for Beginners DVD. I think it, like Flow Yoga for Beginners, may be a great choice for people who are just starting out with yoga. Many of the combinations I’ve tried seem to focus on repetitions of an essential sequence: lunge variations/cobra/downward-facing dog.
Daily Energy Yoga Clip:
At first, I thought the repetitions would be boring, but I was surprised by how much I benefited from them, in terms of both increased flexibility and feedback. I’m beginning to realize how much my range of motion is different in each hip–pigeon pose is somewhat achievable with my left hip, but much more challenging with my right. Alongside that, there are noticeable differences in balance and strength. It’s a funny thing, having that awareness of your body. I find that my awareness helps me recognize my limits and work on them gradually and gently.
I’ve also been reading Donna Farhi’s book Bringing Yoga to Life and it is an excellent book. Farhi is accessible, interesting, and thoughtful. If you are at all interested in yoga as an emotional and spiritual practice, read this book. A quote from her website:
|“When we realize that what we are advancing toward is not some physical form but an inward recognition of the truth of who we are, then we will not feel ourselves to be failing if we cannot attain difficult postures. “Advance” practice is any movement that brings us closer to this recognition of our true self.”
~ Donna Farhi, Bringing Yoga to Life: The Everyday Practice of Enlightened Living