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Element: Hatha & Flow Yoga for Beginners
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Yoga is a wonderful way to reduce stress, increase strength, tone muscle, cultivate flexibility, and improve overall health. Filmed on a lush, tranquil location overlooking the Pacific Ocean, these two 30-minute programs offer great variety for your practice. The Hatha session will relieve stress, increase flexibility and recharge circulation as it guides you step-by-step through a breakdown of static poses using the strap, belt or towel to aid in stretching. The Flow session will build strength and stamina by taking postures from Ashtanga yoga and sequencing them into a simple, natural flow that aids in weight loss, tones muscle, improves balance and calms mental focus. These two diverse programs may be practiced individually but are also perfect to complement each other in the same day. Enjoy both sessions as they create breath awareness and foster clarity between your mind, body and spirit to help you realize your optimal potential.
About the Actor
Raised in his family's yoga ashram on the island of Hawaii, Tamal Dodge (tamalyoga.com) has practiced and taught yoga for most of his life. He is the co-founder of The Yoga Collective, one of the largest yoga studios in California, and is the owner/director of the Tamal Yoga School, a national yoga certification program. Also a dedicated musician, Tamal has recorded and released many alternative spiritual songs in addition to creating the music that accompanies the programs on this DVD. When he is not teaching at his studio or school, Tamal spends much of his time touring the world to share the benefits of yoga with people of all ages. His goal is not only to help people become physically fit but ultimately happier and more fulfilled.
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Top Customer Reviews
The Hatha session is wonderful, soothing, and relaxing. It will definitely relax you at the end of a long day and help work on flexibility. I encourage everyone, beginners and advanced yogis alike, to use the strap as the instructor demonstrates. I didn't because I never use straps or blocks in my yoga practice but one day for the hell of it I did and it really adds a lot to this session. You feel and stretch your muscles in new ways.
The flow session is quite a power packed little workout that those new to yoga, overweight, or new to fitness in general will find very challenging. It is miles away from the ease of the Hatha session. There are some great strength building sequences, very good core and balance focus, and you will get a decent full body workout in 30 minutes. I would hesitate to call this a beginner workout though. You will need a beginning understanding of basic yoga poses and knowledge of proper form.
If you approach the flow session by going easy on yourself, taking breaks when you need to, and focusing on doing the best you can at that moment I think you may like this video and will be encouraged by your progress the more you do it. Use the Hatha session as your reward for putting in a good effort.
The instructor is encouraging and manages to strike a good balance between being motivating and babbling on and on to the point of distraction. His focus and guidance on breath, the essence of Yoga, is excellent.
For those brand spankin new to Yoga I recommend the beginner Yoga Zone dvds. They are, IMO, the best at explaining proper form, giving a good background on Yoga, and guiding you as you learn about this great form of exercise that nourishes your soul at the same time. For beginners with a basic knowledge of poses and alignment but wanting a little bit more challenge (not quite as difficult as the flow practice on this DVD) I recommend Baron Baptiste Power Yoga Level 1. Don't be scared by the title. You will work up a sweat and get a good workout that is very accessible and easy to follow.
There are two programs - a Hatha and Flow. I have been following the Hatha program for four months now 2-3 times a week. Even though it has challenged my muscles and increased my flexibility, I have experienced no soreness or strain whatsoever. At this point, the Flow program is beyond me. It goes too fast for the likes of me. I try it after the Hatha program about once a week and each time get a little further along.
I find this DVD well tempered and considered. The only reason for 4, rather than a 5 rating, is than one cannot bypass Tamal Dodge's introductory remarks to access the programs (The intro was helpful for the first few viewings, but now is no longer needed.) The other reason is the degree of difficulty and the fast pace of the Flow program. It seemed a little intense for a beginner, but I acknowledge the problem could be me. I just upgraded to 5 as I figured out how to bypass the remarks. Elementary, really.