Dynamic Power: Yoga & Pilates

Annika Carlson
Year Released: 2005

Categories: Pilates/Core Strength , Yoga

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This workout is supposed to be a blend of pilates and yoga moves. While it was heavy on the yoga, there were fewer pilates moves. The instruction is purely athletic and even the yoga postures have a fusion feel to them.

I would say this is an intermediate workout along the lines of Kari's Reach and ALC 2. The beauty of this workout is each pose can be adjusted to fit your level of strength and flexibility. She shows 3 modifications for beg, inter, and advanced. These modifications are not intrusive and do not hinder the workout. This is not a fast power yoga workout. Each pose takes time to set up but every move flows nicely into the next with a gentle deliberate feel to it.

The workout itself is 60 minutes but comes with excellent chaptering. It is broken into these parts:

I would classify Awaken as a nice warm up that slowly builds. Dynamics, Balance, Empower all had many standing poses. Those 3 chapters flow into one another and nothing specific stands out in my mind to separate them after doing it once. There are chattarangas and side planks to work the arms and core. There were a few moves to work the back. I was expecting Unwind to be a nice stretch but here's where the bulk of the pilates showed up. While there were some nice hip openers, I felt the ab work came at the wrong point in the workout (just my preference). I was ready to relax!

At the end is a brief meditation. It's not spiritual, more of a [I]reach your potential and celebrate your achievements[/I] dialogue.

There is a chapter on modifications that I haven't watched yet.

The music is light and unobtrusive elevator type. I found the production values to be good. The set is simple with no distractions. She works out on a wood floor with 2 yoga mats. The background is black with a few brightly colored screens.

My over all impressions: I really like this workout. The poses were choreographed so well that everything blends nicely. I didn't find it too challenging so it won't replace power yoga as far as intensity. But I broke a sweat, hit every muscle group and felt well worked when it was finished. Again, it reminds me of Kari's workouts with a graceful feel to it but not as dancy as Kari's. This one will be a regular part of my rotations. At this time a clip can be viewed at fitnessorganica.com.

Instructor Comments:
I like Annika as an instructor. I found her form to be good, and she cues very well. She is smooth and calm without unnecessary chatter. The instruction focuses on form points.