Live Yoga Class (Yoga July 5)

Eoin Finn
Year Released: 2004

Categories: Yoga
- Audio Workout

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Workout Length: 80 mins
Level: All
Equipment: Mat
Date Released: 2004
Availability: Free audio download from Vancouver

This is a really nice audio practice from one of my favourite instructors. The practice itself is very basic. This is a vinyasa based practice so there are vinyasa's between every pose or sequence of poses. If you do not like sun salutations you will not like this practice.

You begin with sun salutations as usual then go into standing poses. This section includes standing forward bends and a triangle series (regular triangle, forward triangle, and revolved triangle). Next is crow pose for balance before going into some more standing closes including side angle pose and revoled prayer twist. After this, if my memory is correct, is standing big toe pose. The hip opener section that follows is a nice change from Eoin's usual emphasis on pigeon pose. Instead you do lunge pose, crescent lunge, and the splits. Next is seated forward bends and twists. The abdominal section is typical Eoin, quite similar to what he did in Power Yoga for Happiness. The next section is more foward bends - wide leg forward bend and turtle pose, then firefly. Then you do supine pigeon followed by backbends. The backbend section is nice and long and includes all types of backbends. You begin with lotus and bow, then camel, bridge, wheel, and standing backbends. You'll really feel good in the back after this! The last sequence includes another seated forward bend and supine leg stretches. He does not include shoulderstand and plough so I usually pause the track at this point to add them in before savasana. And that's it! Savasana is nice and long with nice relaxation reminders throughout.

The music varies a lot. There is reggae-type music with vocals, some eastern style music, more mainstream soft music with vocals, and some general new agey-stuff.

One thing I find refreshing about this practice is that it was recorded from an actual live class so Eoin is a lot more natural than in more planned recordings. I know people will be wondering about teh "woo-woo" factor. Eoin doesn't make any new agey comments here like he does in other workouts. He does make some funny jokes and coments, including some sort of off-color remarks that some may find distatesful (i.e. moving the foot behind the head in supine pigeon improves your status on the online dating site!).

You do hear a lot of background noise in this workout. You can hear him talking to the class participants and encouraging along the way. You can also hear them jumping back into chataranga. I find that this gives the class more of an authentic feel. It almost feels like you are a part of that large class in his studio.

I find myself using this practice a lot because it is so simple. You get a lot accomplished here - the hip openers are short but effective, the ab work is good, and the extra back work at the end feels really nice. It's nothing special but gets the job done. I have problems with my neck so it's really good for me to do a lot of back work. I noramlly find that Eoin puts too much emphsis on the hips so this is a nice change.

One problem is that the track is too long to fit on a CD when burned as an audio file. This is rather annoying because there is a lot of talking at the beginning that could easily be cut out to make it short enough to fit. I was able to do this using sound editing software at work, but most people don't have access to this. You can always burn it as an MP3, and most newer CD and DVD players will be capable of playing it.

Instructor Comments:



I enjoyed this video more than Julianne did, but I will concede it isn't as interesting as the best yoga videos--those with relaxing music, gorgeous sets and cinematography, and flowing patterns of poses are better at holding my interest. Still, this video is worth a look for women who want a yoga tape designed for pregnancy.

I think this would be a great tape for a pregnant woman who had never done yoga before. Alan and his wife say you can do this tape from the very beginning up until the end, and with one exception, I'd agree. There are 2 lying supine poses that he specifically says some women, esp. after the 5th month will not be able to do, so skip them. Like Julianne, I wondered why they bothered to include them in the first place.

There is a LOT of instruction in this video, and it has the feel of what I'd imagine a prenatal yoga class to be like (the instructor, Alan, leading his wife through the poses, constantly pointing out form tips and explaining why a particular exercise is good for pregnant women). Alan doesn't assume you know anything about yoga. Most of the poses are quite basic, but modifications are shown on any pose that requires a good amount of flexibility. Actually the modified pose is normally the one they show, and variations shown are typically for the MORE flexible.

The video's primary goals are to help pregnant women relaxation, release tension, and improve flexibility for labor. There are no strenuous moves or ones that I would consider yoga "strength" moves. I like this approach because it suits my own needs. The breathing section at the beginning addresses the fact that there's less room to take the traditional yogic breaths and explains how to work within that limitation.

If I were not pregnant, I would probably find this video annoyingly slow (as Julianne found), but I'm more forgiving during pregnancy, and willing to take things more slowly. This is a time when I want more pointers and instruction. I have tried doing my other favorite yoga videos, but get frustrated when I come to poses I know I'm not supposed to do or that aren't comfortable (inverted poses, bow pose, supine poses), so I prefer having a yoga video specifically designed for pregnancy. I'm afraid I'm not very disciplined about modifying yoga videos. I end up just stopping the tape at those points.

The set is pretty sparse--like a bedroom with 2 windows, some large pillows on the floor, and a large rug.

All in all, this isn't my dream pregnancy yoga video, but I think it will make a good addition to my repertoire as I head into the second half of my pregnancy.

Wendy Niemi Kremer

You can download this free 90 minute class from It's too large to fit on 1 CD, so unless you have compression software, or an MP3 player you'll have to leave it on your hard drive. Hey but it's free. I haven't done it, only listened to it this morning. Here it goes from memory
3 sun salute A
3 Sun salute B
A bunch of standing poses-
triangle, warrior 2, half-moon, standing one leg balance (grabbing big toe);
crow pose (2x)
A whole bunch of hip openers including chinese split,hanumanasa
pigeon; wide angle pose, forward one legged bent pose;
3 minutes of abs;
frog pose; firefly
By the way there are vinyasas between each side and/or pose.
At the very end he adds back bends
Cobra; bow, bridge, upward bow(3x);
forward bend and that's it.

It's a real class recorded on a Friday night.

I know that I will enjoy doing the class. THANKS EOIN.

Instructor Comments:
Very nice and polite.