muck_a_luck: (Yoga Jaya Mudra Sunset)
[personal profile] muck_a_luck
This weekend I picked up Ana Brett & Ravi Singh: Warrior Workout: Kundalini Yoga.

I am fairly ignorant of yoga spiritual practices. I'll let you visit the Wikipedia page on Kundalini yoga and this website about Kundlini Kriya Yoga for your own edification. One of the important aspects of Kundalini appears to be releasing/controlling the energy of the lower spine to generate enlightenment and bliss. Two of the main tools are kriya and prana, and there's some very interesting breath work as well as challenging and enjoyable kriyas on this DVD. If you are interested in more in-depth discussion of kriyas, visit Kundalini-Teacher.com and PinkLotus.org.

As an aside, not really related to the DVD, you might be interested in this discussion of the possible hazards of unexpected, unguided spiritual awakening of kundalini energy.

I thought this was a well-rounded DVD for someone who wants to blend meditation and physical activity. It opens with a short meditation and closes with a long one (very well-reviewed on Amazon, though I have not had a chance to explore), with brief pauses throughout to stop and re-center with very brief meditative moments. It actually struck me as an interesting combination of vigorous activity and stillness.

Rather than long vinyasa type flow sequences, this DVD is almost completely made up of kriyas, defined by me as simple, though powerful, actions performed in repetition. Almost all of the kriyas are performed for periods of about two minutes.

It would have been very helpful if the kriyas had names. :D Alas, I could not find them, if they exist.

Warm-Up Kriyas )

Warrior Cardio Kriyas )

Cardio Clense Kriyas )

My impression, as a person used to doing vinyasa/flow/power yoga was that this has more pulse to it. The movements are rapid and repetitive. The breath of fire takes practice and is very different from ujjayi, and practicing using so much rapid breathing has a very different rhythm.

After 17, at the end of Warrior Carido, while you are resting on your belly, Mr. Singh says, "Rest, breathe. Fill every cell with pure light." It was easy to have that feeling of glowing. After 18, the hip bouncing kriya, he says to feel "…rivers of light coursing through your body." I did find that after this disc, I felt bright and fresh and refreshed, even though it was a fairly tough workout.

This morning I also tried Fat Free Yoga with Ravi Singh and Ana Brett. It had longer meditative pauses between kriyas, and more breath work. I was less sweaty after this one. It had cardio, but I think the cardio was trimmed to allow space for a good, challenging abs section. Again, I found it to be a well-balanced workout.

In all, I have enjoyed my Kundalini experiment and will probably try both of these DVDs a few times more. I admit to being morbidly fascinated by this video of Cardio Dance Blast last fall, and Dance the Chakras also intrigues me. Probably something will make it to the Christmas list.
just_ann_now: (Yoga: cobbler pose)
[personal profile] just_ann_now
(Reposted from [community profile] exercise_every_day) A few words about Fat Free Yoga with Ravi Singh and Ana Brett.

This is not one of my favorite dvd's - it actually lives in my "To Give Away" pile - but every now and then I haul it out because of its emphasis on ab and upper body work, as well as breathing and meditation. Ravi Singh is particularly annoying throughout, especially when he's trying to sound like an aerobics class cheerleader, and hearing him talk about toning hips and thighs is just ridiculous. There's one spot where he hilariously misspeaks "public" for "pubic", which just throws me right out of a semi-meditative state into fits of giggles. But every now and then my body says, "No back bends today, please," and that's when I haul this out. And I can say that I've made progress; the first time I did it my abs ached for days afterward and now there are just a few temporary twinges. So that's a good thing.

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