A Morning Cup Of YogaJane Goad Treschel
Year Released: 1998
- Audio Workout
Video Fitness reviews may not be copied, quoted, or posted elsewhere without the permission of the reviewer
This book is perfect for helping you add a little bit of exercise into your daily routine, even if you've never done yoga or don't exercise at all. The author's goal was to develop a practice that requires no special clothing, no props, and no getting down on the floor while still providing full-body benefits. She has clearly succeeded in her creation of this short (15 minute) routine which can be done anytime, anywhere (I've done it in my office!).
The practice consists of simple stretches to open and awaken the entire body. The author begins with instruction on three different types of breathing, and for each exercise, she suggests the most appropriate breath to use. The exercises include notes and "extra attention" boxes which offer ideas for expanding on the movements. In addition, some exercises are rated as "optional," and alternates are given to provide either more or less of a stretch. The entire program can be individualized based on your own needs, but the book comes with a CD in which the author leads you through the basic program in only 15 minutes (be sure you're familiar with the exercises first, as she moves quickly!). At the end of the routine, the author includes suggestions for incorporating the practice of meditation. She also discusses the mind-body connection vital to yoga as well as simplifies ancient yogic concepts in "A Sip of Sutras." Finally, the book ends with instructions on one additional yoga pose ("Feet up the Wall") designed to achieve deep relaxation.
This book is made even more user-friendly by the handy spiral binding and the helpful illustrations, including the entire sequence depicted on a single page. It would be a perfect gift for anyone wanting to take a little time each day to improve their overall health and well-being; a wonderful treat for yourself or someone else.
On the CD, Jane has a pleasant, soothing voice that nicely matches the program. The CD moves quickly, so it's important to familiarize yourself with the exercises first and/or to have the book in front of you as you do them.
A Morning Cup of Yoga is a delightful little book/CD set that I recently found for the bargain price of $12.95. The set proposes a gentle, thorough set of stretches that takes exactly 15 minutes---precisely timed via the follow-along audio CD.
One special feature of this program is the fact that it was designed deliberately so you don’t have to go on the floor. Jane explains that she wants you to enjoy yoga without having to worry about changing your clothes or having a mat and equipment. She says the workout thoroughly covers the different parts of the body, yet it is very gentle so you can do it first thing in the morning when you aren’t fully awake.
Jane suggests you read the book first, and I definitely second this idea. It is very brief and offers useful form pointers. The cueing on the disk is adequate, but not stellar---a few of the moves are not entirely clear from her cues alone. In addition to an explication of the poses, the book also hasan introduction by Rodney Yee, a personal account from Jane, some very brief information on the spiritual aspects of yoga, and a one-page summary chart of the exercises. Throughout, it is illustrated with gentle cartoons.
The ‘yoga’ itself is relaxing and enjoyable, but very watered down. It is mostly seated twists and bends, flexing the fingers, arms, wrists, ankles etc. and a few balance poses like the tree and a back leg lift with hamstring stretch. The routine is definitely not hard-core yoga. But the concept is a refreshingly simple one: a short and manageable total-body stretch to get you going in the morning, a sweet little minimalist stretching routine to keep you flexible and alert. I will definitely be incorporating this little gem into my morning routine.
Jane has a soft, soothing voice and gentle demeanor. Her cueing is adequate, but not exceptional.