Sit and Be Fit: Relax to Heal

Mary Ann Wilson
Year Released: 2011

Categories: Special Health Conditions

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In the marketing of this DVD, the premise is that learning to relax is one way to take control of stress. However, in the DVD itself, the premise is that if you learn to relax, you can create a space within yourself that encourages healing of any number of conditions or problems. I thought this was a rather strong statement when I heard it on the DVD, so I wasn't surprised when I saw they changed it for the marketing. What this DVD does is to present several relaxation techniques that can help you relax. Those techniques include progressive relaxation, imagery, breath work, and stroking and self massage. Those sections include:

> Seated Mind/Body Relaxation 26:47
> Seated Self-Massage 8:03
> Seated Self-Massage 4:18
> Seated Visual Relaxation 7:45

The longest section is the mind/body relaxation in which she focuses on breath work and progressive relaxation - starting with your forehead, she tells you to relax one body part at a time until your entire body feels like it is ready to melt. The other sections are all shorter and more focused on a more specific technique. You can either sit in a chair or on the floor while using this DVD.

The music is nice and during sections in which you are focusing on relaxing or massage, there can be calm and beautiful pictures on the screen. Usually, I have my eyes closed, but I would open one eye once in awhile just to see what was on the screen for this review.

Mary Ann Wilson is the only person on the screen. She has done a lot of other videos and has a background in medicine as a registered nurse specializing in rehabilitation, post-polio care, and geriatrics. She comes to the fitness industry as a qualified medical person and her competent and encouraging persona on screen probably comes from that background. Some people might think that she comes across as condescending or "teacher-ish" and I can see how some might think that. She speaks carefully and I think that care can be easily misconstrued. To me, she seems like a caring person who focuses on people who fall within her area of specialty.

This DVD doesn't really have a "workout" on it. I don't have a bias against seated workouts, it's just a different animal in that it gives you ways to relax without really moving your body very much. This DVD is well done - it just won't be for everyone, or even for a lot of people. But, for those who need a resource that helps them relax, this could be a good option.

Laura S.