yin yogamark laham
Year Released: 2012
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This DVD has 3 workouts: front line (61 min), back line (about 63 min), and hip openers (about 50 min). A yoga mat, bricks, and a strap are used and bolsters (or couch pillows) where needed. You have the option of music or voice only under the special features button. Under the special features button is also the ability to make your own practice by picking poses. There are 3 women doing the workout in a rotunda with Mark sitting in the back instructing. One person does the easier modifications and another the harder modifications. There are grey tiles, blue yoga mats, brown yoga blocks, overhead ambient light, and everyone is wearing black. Visually I find it pleasing and relaxing. The music is light and not disturbing.
This is my first introduction to yin yoga and I definitely notice an improvement in flexibility from the workout. Mark reminds you to relax into the poses especially after you've been holding it a few minutes and offers suggestions on how to alter them to gain either a deeper stretch or an additional stretch in another body part. Sometimes these suggestions are when you're already doing the second side and would have liked to try it on both sides. He usually holds the poses 5 minutes and lets you know when there are 5 breaths to go. He also kindly reminds you that it's OK to come out early if that's what you need to do for your body. I usually prefer shorter yoga sessions (so I can fit them in more frequently) but find this is easy to stop at various points in all workouts since there are relaxations or re-balancing poses after every yin pose (or two if they are unilateral). That said, unless I'm really time crunched I have found myself doing most of the workout once I start one because I just feels so good when I'm done.
As his is my first exposure to yin yoga so I can't compare it to other yin yoga practices. But I do like the way the practices are separated and I rotate through them all on a regular basis. I can compare the hip openers to the hip sequence on his blog. They both have a very different feel and neither feels redundant. This is slower and you get more stretching. The blog practice is more dynamic and you may leave it with a more energized feeling for that reason. I like all of these practices a lot. This collection is a much needed addition to my practice and fill the void very well.
Mark's voice is pleasant and calming. His instruction is guiding while still allowing you time and space to experience your practice. Not a lot of spiritual talk, but one or two jokes help ease the practice.