Power Yoga, Volume 3: SweatBryan Kest
Year Released: 1995
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I guess I am going to be the lone dissenter, but I couldn't stand this workout. The first half hour is chatturanga-updog-down dog in between every. single. pose. OMG I thought I was going to scream. That and his slaughter of the English language. "Vertebraes" Really, Bryan? I took it in stride when he referred to vertebra as vertebrae as many do, but vertebraes? Good grief. That and talk about making your stomach strong. The stomach is an elastic organ, it's never going to be strong. The last 15 minutes had some good hip openers, but it's just not worth it for me to endure 30 minutes of mind-numbing repetition to get to it.
Good yoga instructor, a little touchy-feely with the group. Likes to walk around without his shirt on. Horrible grammar. I can't stand his accent.
This is a tough 54-minute power yoga workout, that's worth every minute. You'll definitely sweat, as the title suggests, and when you're done, you won't have a single muscle that went un-worked. I call this an advanced workout, but Bryan says it's intermediate. Um, maybe for him. But for a "normal" person who's reasonably experienced with power yoga but not a Rodney Yee-type, it's advanced. Grade A.
This tape is much like vol. 2, with longer held poses and faster flowing poses than vol. 1.
Volume 3 includes some backbending poses and a headstand that pushes up into a handstand, which I doubt I will *ever* be able to do, but is fun to watch. This is another great workout that is interesting, engaging and exhausting. I've been doing Iyengar style yoga for about a year, and the Power Yoga tapes for several months. I guess that would make me intermediate, although my flexibility is definitely lacking in some areas. I don't think this tape is too difficult for an intermediate person who wants to challenge herself, but a beginner might find it discouraging.
I'm 30 now and I've been doing yoga for about ten + years, and I really like Kest's videos. I find volumes 2 and 3 especially challenging and unique. I sweat quite a bit with both videos and even told Bryan that I felt his videos were better than some of the Firms'! (I like the Firm, but I really hate lifting weights!!!!). Plus, his videos, I feel, have an aerobic benefit, as well, but I would use them alongside a good jog or jump rope routine. Bryan's classes are much more strenuous than the videos, but the videos offer a challenging, relaxing, and satisfying workout for those of us who are tired of the weight lifting frenzy. These videos will work to build lean muscles (along with a healthy diet and regular aerobic activity, of course) and help you discover muscles you weren't aware of. Beginners may want to check out v1 before purchasing the other two. But, if you're already familiar with hatha or ashtanga style yoga methods, jump right in to v2, but modify and go at your own pace. These videos are worth it! Note: the Autonomy video "Cardio Yoga" was also choreographed by Kest and is very similar to his own. I took this one right back to the video store b/c I like BK's so much more.
I think Bryan is an outstanding instructor! I live 100+ miles away from his studio in Santa Monica, CA, and have traveled twice to take his class early on Sunday mornings. His classes generally run about 2:15. After I'd taken his class the first time, I couldn't walk normally b/c of all the incredible stretching routines he put us through! He teaches his classes similarly to his video instructrional style. He's very real;very personable; and he's a caring teacher. If someone was having difficulty, he'd tell her/him to take it easy, relax, and then he'd lay a towel over her/him and check on that person frequently. His class had over 80 people in it both of the times I went ( I think that says a lot about the teacher). You could really see that these folk were yoga fanatics, and they all looked fit, no matter what size they were. Bryan himself is very lean and sinewy, an inspiring example of what yoga can do for physical fitness. As a video, BK is very cool, up front, respectful, and calm. I like him!