Exhale Core Fusion: Energy Flow Yoga

Elisabeth Halfpapp, Fred DeVito
Year Released: 2010

Categories: Ballet/Barre, Yoga

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I wanted to like this one because I like the 10 minute breakdowns and their other workouts. I think I am just too picky about my yoga. First, I dont like tribal music for yoga, I find it too distracting. Second I like her voice but I found his very grating. Third they will get into a pose and pulse. I am not a fan of pulsed movements, I like long holds in yoga. Unfortunately this is just not for me.



The back of the DVD box describes this as "energetic, fast-paced practice....intense total-body workout" I think this is an accurate description. Modifications are shown throughout the routines; however I don't think this DVD would be appropriate for someone new to exercise. I don't think you need to have years of yoga experience (I have about a year but have been exercising much longer than that), but a general knowledge of sun salutations and basic poses would be extremely helpful. I noticed that the Exhale web page recommends previous yoga experience for the similar live class. Although there are yoga poses in every sequence, this DVD is a fusion of yoga, pilates, Chi Gong....so something to keep in mind if you prefer yoga in a pure form. With the exception of the ab work, this is very different from other Core Fusion DVDs. I wouldn't be surprised if I missed a few poses from this, but should at least give the general idea.

Energy Flow (11:40; Liz) -
The first 7 minutes of this flow is a combination of stretches and downward dog variations: standing forward bend with twist, cat/cow, child's pose, downward dog, single leg downward dog, low runner's lunge. It then moves into a plank combo: forearm plank (approx 45 seconds), transitions to side plank (30 seconds), briefly back to forearms, to the other side, and then briefly back to forearm. The flow closes with downward dog to forward bend, rolling up to some easy standing stretches.

Sun Salutation Part 1 (9:37, Fred) - .
The first time through is slow, before moving into the full sun salutation in the second round: Upward Hand, standing forward bend (Uttanasana), Ardha Uttanasana, plank with 4 pushups, Chaturanga, up dog, down dog, hop or step legs forward into ardha uttanasana, and uttanassana, return to standing with flat back.
Each sequence adds variation:
Round 3 - chair pose with 8 pulses,
Round 4 - single leg down dog with bent knee and then moving the leg forward to the chest and extending back again 4 times before stepping into Warrior 1 with 8 pulses on the front leg to start the fifth round.
Round 5 - increases to 5 pushups, and then repeats the variations from the fourth round.
Round 6 - drops the pushups, moving from high plank into low plank and the basic flow from the third round with chair pose and pulses.
Round 7 - repeats chair pose again but adds a spinal twist to each side and stepping back to runners lunge while still holding the twist. He then starts over with the pulsing chair pose and then repeats the poses from the fourth round.
Round 8 - repeats basic flow repeating the pulsing Warrior 1 on the other side
Round 9 - adds standing pigeon pose balance

Sun Salutations Part 2 (10:23, Liz) -
Part 2 is similar to Part 1 with variations between the different rounds, including Warrior 2, Side Angle, Triangle, Half Moon, Standing Split pulsing the raised leg, runner's lunge, single leg down dog keeping leg up while transitioning into plank.

Chi Gong & Hip Opener Stretches (10:07, Liz) -
Strength work (5:40) incorporating various arm movements. It begins with lower body toning using several variations of wide squat (second position). She then moves into a single leg balance, Warrior 3, standing splits with pulses and then lowering the top leg into a curtsey and then back up again.
Hip Openers: Variations on
Ardha Matsyendrasana (seated spinal twist), and
Ardha Urdhva Upavishta Konasana (Half Upright Seated Angle) with raised leg forward, to the outside, and across the body to the inside.

Core & Gluteal (10:17, Fred) -
Starts with an interesting variation of flat back work similar to that on the Pilates Plus and Lean & Toned DVDs, but with your hands resting on two yoga blocks. It then moves into glute work with various bird dog variations. (I need to work on the bird dogs as I kept falling over on one side.) At 7:20, it moves into standard Core Fusion style ab work.

Savasana & Stretches (8:37, Liz) -
The following stretches are done supine and include bridge with arms clasped behind back, both knees to chest, plow pose, spinal twist, and bound angle. Stretches then move into child's pose, standing forward bend rolling up to standing, and then arm circles. There is no traditional corpse pose in this flow - the savasana breathing is done while in bound angle pose.

I completed this DVD after doing 20 minutes on the elliptical. Time really flew and I really enjoyed the entire thing. For me, I felt the workout in the Core more than anyplace else. I look forward to using this again!!