Pleasant Surprises: Hemelaya Behl's Yoga for Urban Living

There's nothing quite like surpassed expectations. I didn't have particularly high hopes for Hemalaya's Yoga for Urban Living (her ads for her other workout videos always look so cheesy), but it was super-cheap and had decent reviews on Amazon. Also, I wanted quickie workouts I could fit into my schedule, so it seemed worth the risk.

The DVD has three programs, "Morning Quickie" (about half an hour), "Evening Bath" (25 min), and "Daily Connection" (1 hr). I've done "Morning Quickie" a few times, and found it a nice, simple set of sun salutations and twists that get my back more flexible at the start of the day.

Hemelaya Behl doing at-home yoga
You'll get to your yoga practice faster if you don't bother with pants

Last night, I decided to try "Evening Bath," since my back was still a little sore from the previous day's bellydance marathon. It turns out that it actually was very relaxing. The music is toned down, Hemalaya speaks in a soothing, quiet voice, and the positions are more of the resting or deep stretch kind. Except -- the shoulder stand! There was an entire shoulder stand series, which I found surprising. I must admit I worried a little about my back while doing them, but I woke up this morning feeling great, so I guess it must have worked.

All in all, the program really helped me relax and stretch my back muscles. In fact, for most of the DVD, I was able to follow her verbal instructions and ignore the screen altogether. The funny thing is this: it was only last night that I noticed the third program, which is an hour long, and just when I've been looking for longer yoga videos! Yoga for Urban Living indeed.

Labels: ,