Tip Tuesday is a weekly feature where I offer a few yoga tips that have worked for me in the hopes that they can help you too.
Occasionally I get questions asking for yoga video recommendations. Some people may scorn videos as not being the same nor as good as being in a live yoga class. While videos aren’t a substitute for a live teacher, I think they are a fantastic alternative when a class might not be an option, time-wise, money-wise, or location-wise. Videos are also a good way to help you develop a home practice. They give you a place to start and once you get familiar with these sequences, you can do these on your own or weave them into your practice. I learned the Ashtanga yoga first series entirely from a video and practice manual before I ever went to an Ashtanga class.
Now there’s even more options available for video viewing. In addition to DVDs, there are a number of podcasts, vidcasts, and downloadable class mp3s and videos. Many are free, many are reasonably priced, considering that for the price of a regular yoga class, you can have a class to keep and practice at will. Netflix is also a great way to try out videos before you buy. I’ve test-driven a number of them this way.
Here’s the videos I usually recommend:
Ana Forrest’s The Pleasure of Strength is a great introduction to Forrest Yoga for beginners and intermediate students and includes a breakdown of the basic moves. Strength and Spirit is a slightly more challenging practice and also has an inspiring video of one of Ana’s yoga demos so you can see where all those abs might take you. Both are an hour so it makes it easier to work into a busy schedule. Ana also has a 5-CD set of advanced classes and class mp3s available. Most of these are much longer (two hours or more) and because you only have the audio and booklet, they can be much harder to follow along. I recommend these only if you’re a more experienced student and have some familiarity with Forrest Yoga. If that’s you, you’re in for some butt-kicking, juicy classes.
Yoga with Deborah Burkman is perfect for a beginning vinyasa practice with plenty of challenge, but also instruction so you’re not lost in the flow. I also like Seane Corn for a deep, intermediate yoga flow.
Les Leventhal has a bunch of videos available on iTunes. Most cost a small amount, but you can save by buying a bundle of classes. There’s a few classes that are offered free so you can get the flavor of Les’ classes. They range in length, so I will often pull one out that works for the time I have available for practice. Most are all-levels, but offer plenty of advanced (and beginning) options.
Jason Crandell has a number of short helpful videos on Yoga Journal. They are accessible and useful for all levels. He also teaches weekly online classes through YogaGlo, though I have not tried any of these.
If you’ve got any favorites I missed, please share them in the comments.