Core Power: Abs, Back & BlissBaron Baptiste
Year Released: 2001
This video is part of Baron's Live! series: each video was filmed during a large, live class. Core Power is a shorter, more concentrated version of Baron's more lengthy practices such as Soul of Strength. Given that it is a power yoga workout, the practice moves along at a brisk pace, although Baron also builds in time for restoration throughout.
The practice begins with several sun salutations to warm up; each downward dog is held for several breaths. Following this, Baron skips standing poses and moves directly to the floor to focus on poses which engage the entire core area, particlarly the abdominals. Baron alternates between postures to stretch and lengthen the abs--e.g., bow, camel, bridge--and those that are designed to build strength, including crunches. At times, Baron moves quickly from pose to pose, but he uses postures like boat to provide longer, isometric contractions. The practice ends with a brief svasana, but since the music continues as the credits role, you could easily hold this relaxation pose for a longer period. At 23 minutes, this is an excellent short practice for days when you have less time and/or when you want to focus specially on core work.
I really enjoy Baron's teaching style, which I find to be very accessible for all levels (although absolute beginners to yoga will want to learn the poses elsewhere).