“Is there any yoga for me?” is a potential question from athletes that gained significant consideration, leading to the evolution of Ashtanga into Power yoga.
Power yoga has a lot of other names like the power vinyasa yoga, power flow, Baptiste power yoga, and a few more. But they all liberate the same sense of dynamic dive into your inner and outer self.
Background of Power Yoga
It all started when two of the main yoga instructors, Bryan Kest and Beryl Bender, in the West noticed the impossibility of fitting athletes into yoga classes. Since these two wanted to spread yogi in the entire western world, they could not miss out on the athletes.
Despite being on the opposite coasts, these yogis came up with the idea simultaneously and started to put it into practice. They were the ones who coined the term ‘Power Yoga’ simultaneously though miles apart.
Bryan Kest defined the aim of power yoga as establishing the maximum energy and spirit. It proposes to heal one’s self sensitively while respecting the boundaries and not forcing the practitioner into someone he isn’t.
According to Beryl Bender, yoga is transformation through attention. These concepts are the basis of power yoga. However, it came into practice the original concepts changed into a competitive physical activity. That didn’t turn out so bad and instead became among the top practiced forms of yoga.
Benefits of Power Yoga
Improves Immune System
Power yoga stimulates your lymphoid system, which boosts your immunity by removing all the toxins from your body. Along with reducing stress hormones, practicing yoga usually makes you aware of your diet, which ensures a good immune system.
Intense power yoga sessions offer a workout for your entire body. They stimulate your systems and stretch your muscles, exhausting your body to its fullest. This will take you into a deep slumber the moment you lay on the bed.
Although power yoga does not involve weights, it contributes to muscle-building. You’ll notice the difference in your muscles only after a few sessions. Some of its postures are so intense and dynamic that you’ll be required to support the weight of your whole body on your limbs. Many people quit weightlifting after power yoga.
Power yoga ensures an effective alignment of your body from top to bottom. Various core-strengthening postures improve your muscles and overall build, making you look tall and lean.
Weakening of bones by the age of thirty is a common issue in many people. But power yoga largely protects its practitioners from such conditions. The muscle lengthening and strengthening exercises also create tension on the bones, which in turn strengthens the bones. This is why it is essential to incorporate power yoga in your daily life.
Improved Blood Flow
The most guaranteed advantage of power yoga is the improved blood circulation in the body. It benefits your internal as well as external organs. Therefore, it has a positive effect on your overall health.
Even though power yoga is mainly a physical workout session, some yoga instructors include meditation too. Not only that, but they also provide weighted segments of both workout and meditation based on your needs. This keeps you calm and relaxed, relieving stress, and anxiety. It is also beneficial in maintaining normal blood pressure.
Practicing power yoga is a more sustainable method of weight loss than gyming. It not only tones your body, but also reduces fat and burns calories. With power yoga, you can burn up to 594 calories in 60 minutes. This yoga in combination with cardio can easily reduce kilos from your weight.
Who Should Not Practice Power Yoga?
Despite all the benefits, it is better to avoid power yoga in the following situations.
If You Feel Incapacitated Even A Wee Bit
Power yoga has a minimum fitness requirement and if your current health condition does not fulfill that, you better avoid it. This ensures that the complex, powerful postures do not cause any harm to your body.
If You Are Pregnant
Power yoga is strictly not for pregnant women. There are other slow-pace yogas with certain asanas that are suitable in pregnancy. Make sure to check out the special DVDs released for pregnant practitioners.
If You Prefer Meditation Over Workout
A lot of people turn to yoga for meditation and relaxation of the inner self. For them, power yoga is not the right option. It’s because this type of yoga focuses on physical exercise more than spiritual wellness.
If You Are Suffering From A Physical Illness
Diseases like arthritis or diabetes might not favor power yoga. However, you can perform it after consulting a doctor.
5 Highly Recommended Power Yoga DVDs
1. Power Yoga Collection: 3 Full-Length Programs
The famous Rodney Yee offers three full-length power yoga programs targeting different requirements. It features yoga burn, power yoga, and yoga for athletes. With the DVD you’ll need some prior knowledge and experience of yoga poses. Other than yoga practitioners, this DVD is a must-have for dancers, athletes, and actors.
- Yee provides a great balance between the physical and spiritual aspects of yoga. So you get both mediation and workout.
- Rodney delivers instructions in an easy way, which helps to understand them and also contributes to achieving a flow similar to his. He is very careful and concise with his words, making sure not to be superfluous, which I found meditative.
- As a beginner power yoga practitioner, I found the poses quite appropriate; they were easy and challenging at the same time. All you have to do is listen to the instructions carefully or give the session a view before starting on it.
- You’ll find the video a little fast in the beginning and might have to practice it several times before you can cope up with Yee’s pace.
- Despite the calm instructions the blaring music in the background of the yoga burn is quite distracting and may also force you to look at the screen to understand the posture.
2. Power Yoga – The Total Body Workout
This Rodney Yee DVD is a great source of strength and endurance. In this DVD, too, Rodney Yee has provided a great balance between spirituality and physical activity. This DVD offers an undivided session of a total of 75 minutes. So if you want something short and quick, then this might not be a great option for you.
- The session is challenging and highly-fruitful for advanced and intermediate practitioners. Beginners can opt for it, but they’ll have to initiate in sections.
- The level of difficulty along the session will keep you motivated on doing better and there is hardly any chance of getting bored.
- Based on the detailed instructions and types of poses, you’d not need any prior experience for this DVD. In fact, the sequence of poses will increase your stamina over time instead of putting your body in any potential danger. You’ll be exploring your new boundaries of endurance and stamina only after a few sessions.
- The instructions like in other DVDs are simple, helpful, and detailed.
- The music sounds fine for the session, not too blaring or too soft.
- Once you have successfully mastered all the poses, you might find it unexciting to practice the same DVD regularly.
- If you already have Rodney’s a few other DVDs, you’ll find this piece old and repetitive.
3. Bryan Kest Power Yoga Complete Collection
If you want to practice yoga like Hollywood stars, then Bryan Kest is all you need. He is the most famous yoga instructor in Hollywood. Bryan’s methods, instructions, and sequences are great for beginners. It’s amazing how he smoothly transits you into an advanced level practitioner over time.
- I like the divided content of the DVD. The three parts, Power 1, 2, and 3, vary in postures and energy. You can view all three sections before choosing your sequence as Bryan does not restrict you over it. I started with 1 and moved to 3 before doing 2 as I found it a little more challenging than the others.
- Each part has a certain set of postures that gradually increases your strength, stamina, and flexibility.
- Bryan explains each posture so you know what you are doing and why. His easy and simple instructions make the process a breeze.
- The music is calming and encouraging.
- I find Bryan’s pace inappropriate for people new to power yoga. They’ll have to pause between postures, which is inapt as it breaks the flow.
- At a certain point, the instructions get unnecessarily detailed and turned into “chatter” for me.
4. Jillian Michaels: Yoga Meltdown
Jillian is among the best yoga instructors. She is a perfect yogi for people aiming to lose weight through yoga. She combines hard-core yoga with her dynamic poses, which proves to be an unparalleled weight loss yoga technique. Her unique methods and postures have always shown super effective results.
- Since Jillian uses hard-core workout with vigorous poses, it not only helps in weight loss, but also improves your core muscles, which in turn boost your flexibility, strength, and balance.
- Jillian’s new and different techniques are exciting and challenging. They’ll sure maintain your interest in the session and not let you get bored.
- There will be several intervals during the session, which will drastically drop your heart rate. This fluctuation will increase your lungs’ capacity.
- The traditional poses in the session aren’t too hard to follow, but the unique way in which Jillian adopts them turns them into robust workout exercises.
- Jillian’s pace is a little fast for beginners. It is really difficult to follow and cope up with without pausing the video several times. However, once you get used to it you’ll flow with it just fine.
- I would not recommend this DVD to people looking for relaxation or calmness through yoga. It is a vigorous and energetic yoga video.
5. Power Yoga for Every Body – Over 20 Workouts
This super versatile DVD by Berbara Benagh is a great option for all-level practitioners. It features 20 different types of routines like am-pm routine, relaxation, flexibility, etc. These practices last from 20 to 120 minutes, enabling you to practice them any time you want. Most of her poses are according to her Slow Flow method that mainly focuses on the alignment of breath.
- Berbara offers a variety of routines enabling you to practice them at different hours of the day. So if you do not have time in the morning you can have a session in the evening. Since each practice has different time durations, you can choose accordingly.
- You’ll find different sessions for different issues. For example, there is one practice for flexibility and a different one for relaxation. So if you are more inclined towards a particular aspect the others act as a bonus.
- Each posture lasts long enough to enable you to focus on your breathing pattern and align it.
- Since Berbara features a slow pace for many of her routines, it might be slow or even boring for people who prefer fast-paced practices.
- I’d appreciate it if the background gets a little less ugly.
- This DVD is amazing for beginners, but for advanced dynamic practitioners, this is not at all challenging or encouraging.
This dynamic and versatile form of yoga is wonderful for strength, flexibility, endurance, weight loss, relaxation, and much more. You cannot particularly dedicate it for one purpose.
Well, performing this type of yoga at home might seem like a risk to a lot of people especially beginners, but choosing the right DVD is much better than paying to an unrelatable yoga instructor. You can check out the top five DVDs I have mentioned above.
They are all reliable and beneficial. If you want variety, then go with Power Yoga for Every Body – Over 20 Workouts by Berbara. However, to achieve a balance between the spiritual and physical elements of yoga, Power Yoga Collection: 3 Full-Length Programs is a good option.