At this stage of the game, I don't think I could keep running if I didn't do yoga on a regular basis. Running makes me tight and yoga unwinds my muscles and prepares me for my next run. So I was happy to check out Christine Felstead's Yoga For Runners: The Essentials ($30), hoping to learn something new or to reinforce good habits. This DVD is not a taped yoga class for you to follow, but rather a primer on why and how yoga can help keep you on the road.
Felstead began as a runner who found yoga later in life, but was moved enough by the practice to become a yoga instructor and spread the message of the power of yoga for runners. I must say the visual aspects of this DVD are a little austere as are the student demonstrators; none of them look like they are enjoying their practice. The narrative is done in voice over fashion, which has an alienating affect as well, but the information given is incredibly helpful to any runner or yogi. I learned a lot from the program, and felt great after doing all the recommended poses.
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The DVD is broken up by areas of the body commonly strained and tight in runners, and it focuses on the low back, hamstrings and hips. The progression is slow and more encyclopedic than flowing. My husband, not a flexible man, really enjoyed the DVD, an indication that it is great for yoga beginners. If you run, or exercise regularly and have a difficult time understanding how to increase your flexibility this DVD is for you. Ultimately the goal of the DVD is to help you create an understanding of what stretches your body needs and to create a yoga series for yourself. You can purchase the DVD directly from the Yoga for Runners website.
Felstead holds workshops regularly in her hometown of Toronto and has certified teachers all over Canada to teach her methods. If possible, you should take a class from her or one of her instructors because live classes offer even more information and insight into the practice of yoga.