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Shiva Rea: Flow Yoga for Beginners (2008)

Shiva Rea , James Wvinner  |  NR |  DVD
4.1 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (117 customer reviews)

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Shiva Rea: Flow Yoga for Beginners + Shiva Rea: Daily Energy - Vinyasa Flow Yoga + Shiva Rea: Core Yoga
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Product Details

  • Actors: Shiva Rea
  • Directors: James Wvinner
  • Format: Multiple Formats, Color, NTSC
  • Language: English
  • Region: Region 1 (U.S. and Canada only. Read more about DVD formats.)
  • Aspect Ratio: 1.33:1
  • Number of discs: 1
  • Rated: NR (Not Rated)
  • Studio: Acacia
  • DVD Release Date: April 15, 2008
  • Run Time: 70 minutes
  • Average Customer Review: 4.1 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (117 customer reviews)
  • ASIN: B0014CSNDY
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #34,743 in Movies & TV (See Top 100 in Movies & TV)

Special Features

None.

Editorial Reviews

Product Description

A superb introduction to one of the most beneficial and rewarding forms of yoga

Flow yoga, also called vinyasa yoga, combines flowing movement with rhythmic breathing for a dynamic mind-body workout. Like a moving meditation, flow yoga unites mind, body, and breath. Your mind clears, your body calms, even as your pulse quickens.

Renowned and innovative flow yoga teacher Shiva Rea leads this introductory practice, filmed amid breathtaking scenery on the Hawaiian island of Kauai. She begins with a seated mediation that teaches you how to link breath with movement. Three more segments introduce her flowing approach to classic poses. Transitions from pose to pose are graceful and easy. You may not have Shiva's flexibility (yet), but you can follow her lead in ways that work for you. Feel yourself becoming stronger and more supple. Sense your new energy and find the fluidity that has always been yours.

Amazon.com

The title, Flow Yoga for Beginners, is slightly oxymoronic, as "flow" yoga, at least as practiced by many yogis and yoginis, is by its very nature more aerobic, vigorous, and difficult than the yoga undertaken by most beginning students. But leave it to Shiva Rea, whose growing series of home videos is arguably the best on the market, to reconcile those two disparate factors--for the most part, anyway. Rea defines the flow concept as "the ability to move freely in an unbroken string of awareness"; in more pedestrian terms, it’s a continuous sequence of poses, one moving freely and naturally to the next, which tends to generate heat and deepen control of the breath. The breath, specifically ujjayi pranayama, is the centerpiece of Rea’s introduction to this 70-minute program; her instructions in the use of this basic but hard-to-explain technique are excellent. Thereafter, she spends about 20 minutes on backbends (from simple standing and lunging backbends to poses like cobra, bow, locust, and camel, which can be very challenging for inexperienced students); this segment also includes a few twists. Next, the "Relaxing Flexibility Flow" sequence consists mostly of counterposes such as the "happy baby" and badakonasana (cobbler’s pose), while the "Standing Pose Flow," the longest and best of the lot, focuses on poses including and derived from virabadrasana II (aka warrior II), one of the common standing positions. It’s all good, but while Rea provides detailed instruction and simpler variations for many poses, genuine beginners would do well to study the program closely before attempting it; and even then, poses like chaturanga dandasana (a lowered pushup) are rarely taught in beginners classes, even in their easier versions. As for the lush Hawaiian scenery, well, great, but the practice of hatha yoga ultimately depends on going inside, even to the point of doing it with eyes closed. Still and all, while it’s not quite up to the standards of Shiva Rea’s other videos, Flow Yoga for Beginners is a winner. --Sam Graham

Customer Reviews

Most Helpful Customer Reviews
201 of 212 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars good, but NOT for beginners May 3, 2008
Vine Customer Review of Free Product (What's this?)
This is a good yoga video. It is well shot with good production values and clear narration. If one is already familiar with hatha yoga, one will not have trouble following along and doing Shiva Rea's routines. It is good for a "video workout partner," and gives you the choice of watching the set without narration.

Ms. Rea is obviously competent, talented, and very adept at yoga. She is quite attractive and demonstrates the overall forms and their "flow" well. The routines are modifications or variations of more traditional forms of yoga, but not drastically so. Some of the forms reminded me of qigong.

The set of exercises on this DVD would constitute a healthy program for someone already in fairly good shape, but I seriously doubt that a couch potato with no understanding of yoga could benefit from it. If you are elderly or have any kind of physical issue, there is no instruction aimed at helping you do the forms or modify them for your needs.

I have to take issue with the marketing of this DVD with the clear statement on the cover that it is for beginners with no yoga experience. I strongly disagree with that. Ms. Rea uses sanskrit terminology frequently without explaining or defining it, and assumes a fair amount of familiarity with yogic techniques/philosophy in her narration. Someone who knows nothing about yoga would not be able to understand all of what is going on, even though they might be able to mimic most of the physical movements after studying the DVD. They will miss some of the more important parts of the process, which are internal/energy-based, and therefore not obvious to a beginner.

For example, telling someone to "move into Downward Facing Dog" is NOT teaching them how to do Downward Facing Dog, which is what beginners need.
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94 of 99 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Flow Yoga For Everyone April 16, 2008
By Yoni
Verified Purchase
I was so glad to get another new Shiva DVD less than 5 months since her last one. This DVD was filmed in Kauai , Hawaii as well as her next DVD's to be released this year and next year. This practice is aimed for beginners but everyone can enjoy it , the whole DVD is 70 minutes and has 4 segments (and savasana) that can be done seperately:
1. Foundation Flow - approx 14 min, Shiva starts with some breathing exercises on a rock near a beautiful waterfall and continues with simple poses like cat , cobra and some variations.
2. Beginner's Backbend Flow -approx. 20 min, there is a change of scenery and Shiva is in a beautiful garden with a lot of trees near a lake.
It is actually mainly standing poses - she prepares you for backbends in this practice with some lunge variations , chair with twists ,side bends, half splits and cobra variations and finally bow and camel. This segment might be quite challenging for true beginners but she shows easier modifications for most of the poses so it's definitely doable.
3.Relaxing Flexibility Flow - approx. 10 min , Shiva does simple stretches on the back , very similar to "supine poses" segment in Yoga Shakti it ends with a forward bend (badhakonasana) , it was very relaxing.
4. Beginner's Standing Pose Flow - approx 23 min . now she's at the beach , the clip from Amazon is taken from this segment and it is dark here too not just in the clip , it was probably shot at dusk. This is really a seperate practice cuz there is no sense of getting up for another energizing practice after the relaxing segment. It is a more challenging vinyasa that includes warrior 2 variations and some more backbends.
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35 of 36 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Great Moving Yoga with Lovely Scenery April 21, 2008
Vine Customer Review of Free Product (What's this?)
I have another hatha yoga DVD that was filmed in Hawaii, and it is just so nice to have the soothing sounds, beautiful backgrounds and gentle lighting of Hawaii helping you relax into your yoga poses. Shiva Rea's voice is smooth and encouraging, and while she is extremely flexible, she gives you hope as you go that, while you might not be limber right now, you can get that way with practice.

This tape only has four real parts. You can either watch them chapter by chapter, or all in a row. You can also choose to watch them with music only, or with her verbal prompts.

The sections each have their own location. Each is quite lovely! You get 15 minutes of basic poses, 20 minutes of a lot of standing backbends, 10 minutes of more relaxing stretches, and the 25 minutes of a long repetitive sequence. Then there is a VERY super-short relaxation at the end.

I think I was spoiled by my other DVD, because with the other one there are multiple hour-long sessions put together, each with its own theme - strengthening, relaxing, etc. With this one, you get just over an hour if you do the whole thing from start to end. But really you wouldn't want to do that - because that last set is a standalone rhythm set that you wouldn't really want to do after relaxing. I wish this one was much more laid out for multiple uses - do set 1 if you have aim A, do set 2 if you have aim B. Also, the sessions should be labeled with how long they will take, so you can plan out your activity. There isn't even any note on the back of the case or in the insert with any times.

I realize you can't control nature, but their timing was off on the filming of some of the segments. The final beach segment got REALLY dark in some parts so you couldn't see what she was doing.
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Most Recent Customer Reviews
3.0 out of 5 stars Three Stars
Its still hard to do even for a beginner.
Published 22 days ago by trish bobault
2.0 out of 5 stars Not for beginners
I'm a typical guy that is trying to build flexibility as I get older (36 now), so I don't get injured and wanted to take up yoga more regularly. Read more
Published 1 month ago by Dan I.
4.0 out of 5 stars In The Beginning
A starting point for daily practice.
Published 1 month ago by Thomas Mikolic
5.0 out of 5 stars Five Stars
Awesome workout!!!
Published 2 months ago by Sandra H.
4.0 out of 5 stars good
good,easy way to do yoga
Published 2 months ago by Ingrid King
5.0 out of 5 stars Great instructions with different variations and a good yoga DVD ...
I really wanted to try a DVD focused on flow yoga and shiva rea seemed to be the master. While I am not a beginner I was unfamiliar with this style of yoga. Read more
Published 2 months ago by Nicole Zensky
3.0 out of 5 stars Not for beginners unless you're super flexible already
I did not think this dvd was suited for beginners, I had a very hard time doing some of the moves, even the alternative "easier" ones. Read more
Published 2 months ago by Heather
5.0 out of 5 stars Great for Beginners & Advanced Yogi's
This video was given to me by a friend. I have a number of Shiva Rea's DVDs and have practiced with her live so I am familiar with how challenging and utterly creative she can be. Read more
Published 4 months ago by Jazmine Luz
5.0 out of 5 stars Discover your true flow!
Introduction includes Shiva Rea explaining about the state of flow to unite the mind, body and breath with creative intelligence:- the ability to move freely through the stream of... Read more
Published 5 months ago by Sarah Sheikh
5.0 out of 5 stars Perfect for me!
Clear instructions and the teacher's movements are easy to follow.
This one was a recommendation from the website About.com, so I expected it to be really good... Read more
Published 6 months ago by dogwog
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