Yoga with John Schumacher (Volume 1): Basic Daily RoutineJohn Schumacher
Year Released: 2003
- Audio Workout
John Schumacherís Basic Daily Practice is an oldie, but goodie. For those looking for a no-nonsense approach to iyengar yoga, this CD is a good choice. Thereís no music. The practice is about 60 minutes long, but he covers many basic poses. For the past few years, Iíve had a cervical spine injury and have had to restart yoga slowly. Iíve found iyengar and anusara to be helpful approaches for their focus on alignment and safe execution. The poses included in this CD can be performed safely by anyone not suffering from an acute injury. It is a nice, gentle way into strengthening the back muscles and opening the hips, shoulders, and hamstrings.
Genuine beginners would be better served by video practices first, but those with a few years of practice under their belts or several months of classes will do fine and will know when to modify. For example, Schumacher instructs the listener to put her hands in reverse prayer position (the hands cupped in prayer position on the back). This was one of the rare instances when he didnít give a modification. Those whoíve done yoga for a while will know that itís also fine to clasp the elbows behind the back instead.
Schumacher gives very precise instructions about how to position parts of the body so that stretches are deepened and joints are protected. His meticulous alignment cues drive home the intricacy of the most fundamental poses in yoga like mountain and triangle poses. His instructions are sometimes too much to absorb all at once, since he explains how in each pose you must focus on how multiple muscles are working together, but I like that. I never felt completely lost and knew that if I had missed a line or two of instruction because I was focusing on something else, I could pick up on what he said next time. This is a basic routine, but itís one that a person can grow with. Highly recommended.
His delivery is professional and informed. No side comments. No metaphysical meditations. Just intelligently rendered instructions for improving the poses.