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by Shiva Rea
Sounds True, 2004
Review by Christian Perring, Ph.D. on Jul 18th 2006

Yoga Shakti

This 2-DVD package of Shiva Rea yoga is a little different from the others that come from Sounds True.  The yoga instruction was shot in the same location, and indeed, some of the material used here is also on the other DVDs, in the Maldive Islands and Southern India.  The production is very similar, with Shiva Rea instructing in a voice-over while she demonstrates in the open air, on a yoga mat on a beach.  There is a variety of music used in the background, and much of it has an eastern "world dance" flavor, which is very pleasing.  This product is different for two main reasons.  First, the second DVD disc has an interview with Rea, and she provides some tips on how to do the positions.  There is also more information about Rea's organization YogaAdventures, she demonstrates more positions, and there interviews with a number of west coast people talking about what yoga means to them. Second, the first disc has a much greater variety of yoga routines than the other Shiva Rea DVDs, and these go to a more advanced level.  This means that Yoga Shakti is probably not the most appropriate place to start for beginners, because they may find it difficult to achieve Stage 1 of some positions, and the prospect of getting to Stage 4 may be daunting.  However, for people who have been doing yoga for some time, it can be inspiring to see Rea's astonishing strength and flexibility as she goes through the various levels of different positions.  Even for those of us who are still only at Stage 1 for many of the postures, it helps to see how ultimately an introductory position could be developed.

As with the other Shiva Rea DVDs, the first DVD has a number of different postures, and you can either choose from one of four set routines (basic flow, solar flow 1, solar flow 2, and lunar flow) or else you can create your own routine by programming the DVD yourself, from the 30 basic elements.  While it is possible to just do one or two of the individual elements, the DVD seems designed for longer routines, so using it for a yoga workout can be particularly demanding.  Most of the work here is in the form of flow yoga, and you can expect to work up a sweat as you go through an hour or more of different movements.  Rea gives clear instructions on what to do and generally when it isn't quite clear from her words, you can follow her example by watching her. 

It is the high production quality that sets Shiva Rea's yoga DVDs apart from others.  There's sophisticated editing that blends one image on top of another, and the flexibility of use.  Among the many yoga DVDs available, Yoga Shakti stands out as one of the best.  Highly recommended.

 

 

 

Links:

·         SoundsTrue.com

·         Review of Solar Flow Yoga DVD

·         Review of Sun Salutations

·         Review of Lunar Flow Yoga

·         Review of Yoga Sanctuary

© 2006 Christian Perring. All rights reserved.

 

Christian Perring, Ph.D., is Chair of the Philosophy Department at Dowling College, Long Island, and editor of Metapsychology Online Reviews.  His main research is on philosophical issues in medicine, psychiatry and psychology.