Thursday, July 19, 2012

SHIVA REA: Fluid Power, Vinyasa Flow Yoga

This is a great DVD for Intermediate/Advanced level participants, however beginners could probably simplify things and work up to the more difficult variations and poses. It has great cinematography and beautiful music that helps you get through each sequence. After warming up to Shiva Rea's instruction style and the movements themselves I really enjoy these sequences for either warming up my body in the morning, or relaxing in the evening before bed.
If you've never done anything like this before you might be self-conscious because some of the movements may be unfamiliar to your body. You may want to find a room where you can completely release and not let any tension get in the way of enjoying these movements. You probably want a clear space of about 8'x8' for almost everything on this DVD because she uses directions and movements that require a little bit of space. As you become more familiar with the sequences then you can perform all of them more freely and enjoy them.
Below, I’ve listed a description of each sequence on the DVD. My favorites were Backbend Flow, Hip Opening Flow, and Beginning Flow. I'm also anxious to try out the "Yoga Matrix" that supposedly allows you to customize your routine!

Vinyasa Flow Yoga- From what I can gather it is the connection of your breath to your movement. Shiva Rea talks about how we are made up of water and moving with the fluids in our bodies and joints is good for us. 
Shiva Rea-From what I can tell she is a master of Vinyasa Flow Yoga and is highly respected as such.

Disc 1
Yoga Matrix-You can design your own yoga routine using the sections provided.

Backbend flow-108 min. Begins with a chanting/meditation sequence. You can skip this if you like. Then it moves into sequences that are probably my favorite sequences on the DVD! There are lots of twisting movements and stretches that feel fabulous! She goes through progressions that build on each other, and it is done in a way that makes sense to the viewer. Those of you who enjoy Power Yoga would like some of these sequences. The intermediate back-bending sequences are more difficult, but feel oh-so-good!

Hip opening flow-77 min. Begins with the same standing movement meditation that Beginning Flow uses...the one that makes you want to belly-dance :). LOL! You then move into sequences that flow through positions and you learn some new transitions. Shiva Rea checks in with pelvic alignment every so often, which is so good for protecting your lower back from injury! This is also a routine for power yoga lovers. A handstand sequence which requires a wall and a backbend sequence has some great bridge pose variations! Two meditation sequences close the routine one sitting the other is the very same deep relaxation corpse pose meditation as Backbend Flow and almost every other pre-set routine.

Creative flow-63 min. I haven't done this yet, but I assume that it involves a large amount of structured improvisation.

Beginning flow-43 min. Begins with standing movement meditation. My inner belly-dancer tells me that anyone that likes wrist twirling and hip movements would love this meditation...including myself. :) You then move into a movement sequence that uses cat/cow, down-dog, plank and up-dog; flowing through each of these positions and learning some new transitions. The next sequence is a series of hip opening poses, centered around Pigeon pose that is the same section from Lunar flow. This segment ends with a deep relaxation sequence.

Lunar flow for flexibility- 41 min. Begins with meditation and some standing improvisation then moves into some floor poses including Pigeon pose variations. There’s some small improvisation on the floor and which ends with meditation in corpse pose. It felt fantastic to have the fluidity while in the poses in order to get a more dynamic stretch and work my muscles into the poses. The great thing about Shiva Rea is that she gives you a pose and you can either stay there or do the variation with her. This is great for adapting it to any level!

Meditation-26 min. This sequence sees the viewer using sound, breath and movement for meditation. This consists of chanting in a song-like manner while you are completing fluid movements and moving with the breath. The second sequence is also seated and feels delicious on the spine. The third sequence is standing meditation where Shiva Rea talks you through body systems and imagery. The last sequence is the same ending meditation as Lunar Flow and Beginning Flow.

Disc 2-
I haven't looked at yet but it is supposed to have some special features. :)

If you are interested in more Shiva Rea you can take a look at her website:

Happy Training! à bientôt!

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