20 Minute Yoga Makeover - Weight Loss

Sara Ivanhoe
Year Released: 2004

Categories: Yoga

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This short, invigorating workout is a perfect practice for a busy schedule. Itís a true 20 minutes, as a matter of fact if you start the clock when the routine begins (and not at the introduction) then itís really closer to 19 minutes.

The routine consists of vinyasas with added arm movements to, supposedly, increase the calorie burn. Initially, these are fairly typical sequences: mountain to chair to forward bend to mountain, or chaturanga to up dog to down dog to chaturanga. But what makes this routine special is that, once things get rolling, Ivanhoe adds in extended leg down dogs and standing twists such as revolved crescent lunge and revolved triangle. I love standing poses and these additions allow me to push my edge in a short amount of time. A real treat!

She ends the practice, rather abruptly, with just one quick seated stretch (single-legged forward bend) and a mudra. The mudra doesnít quite ďseal in the practiceĒ for me, so I usually add a brief final relaxation.

Instructor Comments:
Ivanhoe has a warm, unaffected charm and doing her workouts is like practicing with a friend. Some on VF have complained that her gently measured speech and use of colloquialisms appear condescending, but I just donít see it. Itís funny how one personís patronizing is anotherís unpretentious.

Gina (aka gxm17)


Beth did a great job of explaining poses and the basics of the dvd, so I will give my personal opinions.

The 20 min time on this is great for the dread factor. I had no dread factor coming in and it was over before I knew it!

I really enjoyed this workout. It flowed enough to keep me interested and feeling like I was working out, but not so much that I was very tired. I am just coming off a break after surgery and this was a great jump back into it. I feel stretched as well as lightly worked out. Perfect workout for me today!

I love the scenery, the music and Sara. I really enjoyed the mudra at the ending, it made me feel sort of in touch with myself and really did make me feel like I was "sealing in" the work I'd done.

Instructor Comments:
Very down-to-earth, likeable. Not over the top with flowery language (I don't mind that, but I know some do), great with explaining poses. She is one of my favorite instructors!

Krista (benemma)


In 20 Minute Yoga Makeover: Weight Loss, instructor Sara Ivanhoe connects various series of poses--or vinyasas--in a flowing manner. Although she repeatedly states that the addition of movement in the poses (namely moving the arms while inhaling and exhaling) will keep your heart rate up and contribute to weight loss, the practice isn't nearly aerobic enough for this purpose. However, the practice is suited to those who prefer movement rather than static poses.

Sara begins with a chair pose vinyasa, adding arm movement and a forward bend and linking the series with breath; this is followed by a standing backbend combined with forward bend series. Next comes a vinyasa that is repeated throughout the workout: you move from plank to cobra to down dog, again combining the series with breath. From a 3-legged down dog position, Sara leads you into several series of standing poses: she begins with triangle/revolved triangle, moves on to warrior/side angle pose/revolved side angle in the next series, and finishes with crescent lunge/revolved crescent lunge. She completes the plank-cobra-down dog vinyasa between each series, eventually substituting upward dog for cobra. Finally, the practice ends in a seated position with head-to-knee pose and a brief hand mudra. Overall, this is a nicely flowing 20-minute practice with a standing pose focus.

Instructor Comments:
Sara Ivanhoe comes across as similar to in her Crunch videos--if you liked her down-to-earth style (although sometimes she is seen as a bit patronizing), you will probably like her here as well.

Beth C (aka toaster)