Ana Brett & Ravi Singh
NOTE: Like many other VFers, I received review copies of these new DVDs directly from Ana & Ravi.
Kundalini Yoga for Energy & Super Radiance! is one of three new DVDs from the husband/wife team of Ravi Singh/Ana Brett. As with their previous videos, the workout features Ana alone on screen while she and Ravi take turns providing voiceover instruction. However, gone is the plain white studio and the furry little rug; here Ana uses a traditional yoga mat, and she practices on a raised platform, surrounded by columns and against a painted backdrop of a tranquil lake scene.
The Main Menu of this DVD reads as follows:
*Design your own Workout Matrix Menu Option
With these new DVDs, Ravi and Ana have offered a Matrix; this option allows you to customize your own workout by selecting any of the chapters in any order (up to 15 total) to create your own yoga practice. Each DVD also has Pre-Set Selections which provide a variety of additional routines. The Pre-Set practices on this DVD are as follows (includes times in minutes):
Quick Time Workout (Also Good for Beginners)(29:00)
A Pretty Tough Workout (Intermediate Level)(63:00)
Total Energy Blast (Highly Ambitious)(1hr,40m)
Here is the Chapter Selection breakdown (includes times in minutes):
*Yoga Radiance Warm-Ups (7:12)
*Yoga Radiance Stretching Plus (8:42)
*Energy & Radiance Super Set (17:53)
*Radiance Salutation (9:30)
*Tiger Claws (7:30)
*Deep Relaxation (6:22)
*Solar Power Mantra (11:41)
*Adi Shakti (5:25)
*Closing Prayer (1:12)
*Breath Primer (5:26)
From the Tune-In through the Closing Prayer, the main practice is just over 76 minutes long. In the Warm-Ups, Ravi and Ana include moves familiar from their past workouts, such as stomach grinding. The Stretching segment also included some familiar moves (eg, rag doll), but I loved the fact that Ana does some nice hip openers here as well. In fact, I was really enjoying this practice until we got to the Supersets segment. At first, Ana does comes in and out of a squat position (sort of a moving chair pose), which was fun. However, she then goes through a series of cardio moves very similar to those featured in one of the other new Ravi/Ana DVDs, Kundalini Yoga: Cardio, Stretch, & Strengthen. These moves began low-impact, but then Ana performs 30 seconds of high impact jumping jacks while doing Breath of Fire (BOF); this is repeated several times.
Following the Supersets are two segments which each require A LOT of endurance. For the first, the Radiance Salutation, you start seated on your heels with your hands clasped behind you, then come forward and touch your head to the ground (sometimes known as rabbit's pose); you then continue for about 8 minutes total. For the Tiger Claws segment, you are simply lifting your clawed hands overhead, but you are repeating this movement while performing BOF for over 7 minutes--I was only able to make it about 1/3 of the way through each of these sections. The Solar Power Mantra and Adi Shakti songs (both sung by Ana) are nice, but after the prior two segments, both felt a bit too long to me. Finally, the Deep Relaxation, Closing Prayer, and Breath Primer segments are similar to what Ravi and Ana have offered on their previous DVDs.
A few final things to note. First of all, the font used for the DVD menus, especially the submenus, is VERY small--so small, in fact, that I found it impossible to read the submenu selections on my 13" workout room TV (although when I played the DVD on my computer, the text appeared clearer). Overall, I found this DVD is well-done, but I had mixed feelings about it--i.e., I really enjoyed the warm-ups and stretching segments, which I felt were the most similar to Ana and Ravi's previous work, but I wasn't as crazy about the rest of the DVD. Still, I think this DVD will definitely find lots of new fans and will probably be well-suited to more intermediate-to-advanced kundalini yoga practitioners.
Ana has an extremely graceful on-screen presence, and she does an amazing job of demonstrating the postures--she is seemingly indefatigable, and she always appears to be enjoying herself. She and Ravi do an nice job of sharing responsibility for the off-screen voiceover instruction.
Beth (aka toaster)
March 15, 2009