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Viniyoga Therapy - Upper Back, Neck and Shoulders - with Gary Kraftsow

4.3 out of 5 stars 130 customer reviews

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(Aug 05, 2008)
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Editorial Reviews

Product Description

This DVD focuses specificially on the upper back, neck and shoulders. Includes a presentation on back pain, in-depth instruction on safely practicing the postures, and three complete therapeutic practices. Suitable for all levels of yoga and non-yogi alike.

About the Actor

Gary Kraftsow, MA has been a pioneer in the transmission of yoga for health, healing and personal transformation for 30 years. He began his study of yoga in India with T.K.V. Desikachar in 1974 and received a Viniyoga Special Diploma from Viniyoga International in Paris in the mid 80 s. In 1999 he founded American Viniyoga Institute. Gary has successfully developed protocol for two National Institute of Health studies: Evaluating Yoga for Chronic Low Back Pain and Yoga Therapy for Generalized Anxiety. He is the Founder, Director and Senior Teacher of American ViniyogaTM Institute's Teacher and Therapist Trainings, and the author of two books published by Peguin: Yoga for Wellness and Yoga for Transformation.

Special Features

None.

Product Details

  • Actors: Gary Kraftsow
  • Directors: Pranamaya
  • Format: Color, Full Screen, NTSC
  • Language: English
  • Region: Region 1 (U.S. and Canada only. Read more about DVD formats.)
  • Number of discs: 1
  • Rated:
    NR
    Not Rated
  • Studio: Goldhil Entertainment
  • DVD Release Date: August 5, 2008
  • Run Time: 170 minutes
  • Average Customer Review: 4.3 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (130 customer reviews)
  • ASIN: B0019579YU
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #329,480 in Movies & TV (See Top 100 in Movies & TV)

Customer Reviews

Top Customer Reviews

By Reviewer Dr. Beth #1 HALL OF FAMETOP 50 REVIEWERVINE VOICE on April 11, 2008
Format: DVD
This DVD focuses on issues of the upper body, specifically the upper back, neck, and shoulders (the other DVD in this series focuses on the lower body). It differs from other yoga DVDs in that it contains a strong educational component in addition to the practice element. Also, the practices on the DVD are designed for rehabilitation and strengthening, and thus they are more similar in feel to a physical therapy session than to a yoga class.

The main menu of this DVD consists of four separate segments: 1) Understanding Back Pain, 2) Technique Workshop, 3) Therapeutic Practices, and 4) Special Features. The Technique Workshop provides the opportunity to study individual postures in greater depth. The Viniyoga Therapeutic Practices offer three complete practice segments tailored to meet different needs as described below. (Note: the DVD also provides bonus MP3 audio versions of each practice.)

1. Upper Back and Neck Therapy (22 minutes). This is the most gentle of the three practices, and it is designed to address misalignment or instability by strengthening and mobilizing the upper back and neck. In consists mainly of movements which serve to lengthen the upper spine.
2. Neck and Shoulder Therapy (32 minutes). This practice is more specifically geared to releasing pain or restricted movement in the neck and shoulders via stretching, aligning, and balancing work. Many of the postures here involve moving one arm as you twist your neck to the opposite side.
3. Strength and Stability (41 minutes). This longer practice is intend to build sustained, long-term health in the upper back, neck, and shoulders. It is a bit more intense than the previous two, containing many of the same posture sequences but adding some stronger work as well.
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This is an excellent DVD, a book could never match the step by step instructions. As you are doing the yoga exercises Gary describes the different areas you should be focusing on stretching and does an excellent job of it. It contains very slow and stress free moves. The DVD contains a segment on Understanding Back Pain, an instructional Technique workshop to learn the practices, there are 2 different Practices for the initial stages and a longer Strengthening & Stability practice to use when you are feel better and improve. You don't have to be Gumby to do these poses. There is no need to try and stretch further than your ability, your flexibility increases over time. I suffer from chronic upper back and neck pain from car accident many years ago. It is especially bad between my shoulder blades, traveling up through my neck. It is tissue damage, I have nothing wrong with any bones. I've tried it all Chiropractor, Acupuncture, and went to the gym for a while. I found that the best thing you can do for an injury with chronic pain is to continually stretch and slowly work on re-strengthening the muscles. I went online searching for a Yoga Video as a last resort. I get so much relief from many of these poses, I even have my favorites from the video that I do any time I feel like it. I live with pain every day of my life and can say that this video has helped me out a lot. It is an excellent way to unwind after a long day of sitting in front of a computer at work.
I don't usually write reviews, but I had to on this one.. I definitely would recommend this DVD for someone who is looking for therapeutic viniyoga therapy. The specific poses/stretches target the upper back, shoulders, and neck. I think it is even good for everyday stress relief, which can cause tension in the shoulders and neck.

I commend Gary Kraftsow for making this DVD. I am so glad I found it! I have even been considering becoming a Yoga instructor to help people with chronic pain like me.
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I bought this and the "Lower Back" DVD because I spend way too many hours at the computer, and I was having back pain and foot pain from a pinched nerve. The DVDs are great. I love the anatomy overview, and the way you can progress at your own pace. I lent my copy of this upper back video to my chiropractor, and he thought it was fantastic and said he plans to buy both lower and upper back to show his other patients.
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I have struggled with neck and shoulder pain for years due to daily computer work. This video is more helpful than any physical therapy, chiropratic session and massage therapy I have tried. My back feels relaxed and rejuvenated every time I do it and the reduction in discomfort lasts far longer than any other treatment.
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I rarely write reviews, but had to for this video. I am an artist and have a hard time with stiff muscles from spending hours painting. I noticed an improvement in my back and shoulders after using this video one time. A must to help strengthen the back. Easy to do and in about 20 minutes. I get more relief from this video than with pain relievers.

Just had to share!
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This will be a long review, but the short version is--this DVD is darn near magic. Buy it. Really. Now here's why I recommend it, and have recommended it a dozen times plus bought it and the lower back version for my father.

I have scoliosis with a curvature in two planes and no curve in my neck, which makes for chronic, daily back pain. One of my doctors told me once he never expected me to be pain free with all the twists and turns I've got. Now, don't get me wrong. Scoliosis can't kill you, and it's not nearly as serious as what a lot of my friends are dealing with. But it can just make your life painful and inconvenient, so it's worth working to improve it. About two years ago I started seeing a chronic pain doctor who gave me pain killers and recommended steroid/painkiller shots in my back (facette injections). I've been thinking about the shots, but it makes me uncomfortable (they do them under x-ray to make sure they don't hit an important nerve--eek!), and while the pills work well, I don't want to be on narcotics the rest of my life, and it's a life of slowly increasing doses, plus the very real risk of addition. Not something to screw around with.

About four months ago, with too much time at the desk, it got to the point where I would either have to get the shots or increase my pain medication, and I didn't want to do either. I had been given exercises from a physical therapist, but they were terrible hand-drawn handouts on a sheet of paper, and I was too lazy to do them. So I thought a DVD might help, someone to follow along with, nice music. My goal was to just not have to get the shots or increase the meds.

So, I went looking for a DVD and came across this one. The reviews were amazing, almost unbelievable.
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