Yoga Groove

Karen Russell
Year Released: 2010

Categories: Ballet/Barre, Yoga

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I received a review copy of this dvd from the instructor. From the dvd cover, ďYoga Groove was created to unite the practice of yoga with the freedom of dance.Ē This is a 2 dvd set with the following menus:
Disc 1:
Meditation: teaching the Ujayi breath (6 minutes)
Yoga poses: (48 minutes). Detailed instructions of all of the poses in the flow.
Dance warm-ups: Brief demonstrations of the dance warm-ups.

Disc 2:
45 minute yoga/dance flow
Menu to choose separate segments (7)
4 Dances of about 5 minutes each.

Since I am an experienced yogini and dancer, I looked at disc 1 but did not do it. This disc is good for absolute beginners because Karen spends a good deal of time on proper alignment.

The 45 minute yoga flow is the meat of the program. It is a well choreographed yoga dance to music which incorporates basic yoga poses with basic dance moves such as tendues, batments, windmills, isolations and arm exercises. Sun salutations are interspersed for extra strength work. Also included are simple back bends and a very dancey floor routine. I wish that she had added some more advanced poses. Since she didnít, anyone can do this routine and get a good workout. The music is instrumental and unobtrusive. I enjoyed this flow immensely.

I wish I had the same joyous experience with the dance segments. As I said there are four of them. She teaches the routine and then repeats it about 4 times. Fire, a disco routine; Wind, a lyrical jazz routine with too few steps; Earth, a pseudo African dance routine. Again too few steps; Water, not really a routine, but a choreographed yoga dance with no instruction and by far the best of the dance segments and lastly Air which is a free dance with no choreography, just music and Karenís voice. I skipped it.

I didnít enjoy the dance segments because I didnít like the music or the simple, easy choreography. Iím strange in that I canít dance to music I donít like. This music was made especially for this dvd and it just wasnít my cup of tea. Some of it was inspirational rap music. Not a fan of rap music of any kind. Also, the dances were too simple. By the second repetition, I was bored and I fast forwarded to the next segment. The best dance segment was the Water routine which was designed for the viewer to look at Karen and her dancers perform a yoga routine. It would have been so much better, if this flow was part of the original flow for intermediate students. Some of the poses were half moon, camel, shoulderstand, and upward facing bow. I tried to follow along but itís hard to do without cues.

Who is this dvd for? Absolute beginners in yoga and dance.
Pros: Good instruction on alignment for beginners. Great flow that moves at a moderate pace and feels like a dance class. Karen counts beats in between the poses.
Cons: The music for the dances. The sparse choreography.
Overall: A nice class to do on slow days. I broke a sweat and felt stretched out afterwards.

You can purchase this dvd set at www.

Instructor Comments:
Karen is in voiceover and there is a music only option for the flow and the dances. Nice calming voice with excellent cues. The entire class takes place on a beach in southern California.