Wai Lana Yoga: Invigorating
This is part of Wai Lana's "Hello Fitness" series, and is about an hour long. For those who have never seen Wai Lana's tapes, she has the most outstanding production -- beautiful, outdoor scenery that changes with each pose. Her clothes change, too, and they are all very colorful. I must mention the music, too -- I love her music. I really don't know what you call it, but it's great, and perfect for her workouts. After all that gushing, I have to say that this particular tape wasn't for me. It's a nice workout, but I'm looking to sweat. There is a good deal of strength/toning work in this video, but not what you would call power yoga. Her "Fun Challenge" series looks more like my style, although I haven't tried them yet. You can get the "Hello Fitness" series at Amazon.com or WaiLana.com. As far as I know, "Fun Challenge" is only available at WaiLana.com. Grade A.
This was my first Wai Lana video, and it was not at all what I had expected. First of all, I had assumed that she taught mostly beginner's yoga, so I was pleasantly surprised to discover that she includes many more challenging asasas. Secondly, unlike most of my other videos, the practice did not really flow from one pose to the next. Rather, each asana was its own stand-alone practice, with the pose being held for an extended length of time time and then a period of relaxation following the pose. What I liked about this style is that it means that each time you do the video, you can do as many or as few poses as you choose.
The active part of the practice is approximately 35 minutes long. Wai Lana begins with seated and lying poses. The sequence is as follows (the names of all asanas appear on the screen, but at times, I have substituted the more common name for the pose rather than the one she used): boat, cobbler's pose, plank, bridge, side leg lift, plow/shoulderstand, fish, and 1-leg happy baby. Because each pose is held for several minutes, I found many of them to be quite challenging despite the fact that I consider myself to be at an intermediate level.
The next section of the workout consists of standing poses, including triangle, double angle twist (a forward bend variation), wide-legged forward bend, and wind-blown tree. Wai Lana then returns to the floor for two additional seated postures, camel and lion. Finally, the practice ends with a 5-minute seated meditation which includes Wai Lana's song-like chanting and beautiful background scenery. I was definitely impressed with this video, and I plan to try others in the Wai Lana series.
I found Wai Lana's frequent outfit changes, gaudy appearance, and heavy accent a bit difficult to get used to, but she provided excellent instruction and cuing (although she does not give mirrored cues). She is quite encouraging and offers a good bit of information about the benefits of each pose.
Beth C (aka toaster)
July 7, 2004