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New Yoga

(1994) This tape is a very good introduction to yoga, especially for experienced exercisers with pretty good flexibility. It takes a more athletic approach rather than the spiritual mind/body angle. The tape does offer many variations for beginners and those who are less flexible. The set and music are very calming, and the camera switches frequently among the exercisers to show the different variations of the same pose.

Kathy teaches for most of the video, though a few of the sections are led by Rod Stryker.

I have no concrete complaints about this video, but I bought this video for relaxation and to improve my flexibility, and for some inexplicable reason I tend to get impatient with the beginning breathing and "loosening up" sections. They seem to go on too long. I guess I don't think that a yoga tape should make me feel like this, which is why I prefer Ali McGraw's "Yoga Mind & Body" tape. Ali's tape is thoroughly relaxing for body and spirit, though it offers fewer form pointers and variations for the less flexible exerciser.

Wendy Niemi Kremer

I love New Yoga Challenge more, but this is a great tape for the intermediate. I took this tape once on a weekend to my sister-in-laws and the kids wanted to do it along with me (ages 6-10). They did the whole tape with me and about fell asleep at the relaxation at the end.

I like how this tape is broken down into sun salutes, standing poses and then seated poses. It ends with a great relaxation. Because the tape is segmented, you can choose what you want to do, or just do the beginning and finish the tape another day. This tape does a good job of getting you relaxed and stretching all the muscles.

While Kathy is very flexible, there are other exercisers who do modifications. They camera doesn't focus on them enough, but it's just usually a case of common sense when practicing yoga -- do what is comfortable and stop when it's not. The setting is very relaxing and the music is great in this tape.

I highly recommend this one for intermediate exercisers who have a good understanding of basic yoga. A-

Kathy Smith is the main instructor in this video, while Rod does some of the background talking and is featured in a few of the poses. I love the Kathy Smith Yoga series because she focuses on the athletic style of yoga rather than the spiritual style. Kathy's voice is soothing and calming and her cueing is excellent and she is sooo flexible.


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