I want to be a human pretzel...
June 10, 2008 10:59 AM   Subscribe

Are there any good yoga/stretching DVDs for increasing flexibility?

I'm looking for a DVD with an emphasis on becoming more flexible. Can you recommend a flexibility yoga DVD, or maybe something with stretching for martial artists or dancers? My hips and legs are especially tight, and since I need to work on this anyhow, maybe I can get all the way to the splits!
posted by lemonade to Health & Fitness (8 answers total) 3 users marked this as a favorite
I love Nintendo's Wii Fit. The yoga section has quite a few poses dedicated to getting more flexible. The on-screen trainer shows you the moves, and the "balance board" measures how you are holding yourself -- left vs. right, toes vs. back of your feet, etc.

You can also select a male or female trainer, and change the view so you can see how to do the pose from different angles. It starts you out easy (less duration, fewer repetitions) and increases as you improve.

The Wii may not get you to pretzel-dom, but it sounds like you're just starting out -- my situation too -- and its greatest strength is that it's fun, so it's easy to use it every day.
posted by CruiseSavvy at 11:23 AM on June 10, 2008

Best answer: I have always liked Rodney Yee the most of all the yoga videos I have used and he has a pretty wide variety. The Power Yoga for Strength and Flexibility is a good one but it is pretty intense, I wouldn't suggest it if you are just beginning, unless you are already in pretty good shape. Usually the local library will have some to check out. But what did the best for me was Richard Hittleman's 28 Day Exercise Plan. It starts off really gently but allows you to match your exercise to your ability and includes readings about the mental part of yoga which I have found most videos either gloss over or leave out all together.
posted by headless at 12:17 PM on June 10, 2008 [2 favorites]

Said it before, will say it again.. you shouldn't learn yoga (or similar disciplines) from a DVD. You will do the postures incorrectly, you will learn bad habits, and you can injure yourself because of it.

Take a class for a few months first, until you are grounded in the basics.
posted by dirtynumbangelboy at 1:00 PM on June 10, 2008 [1 favorite]

I can't recommend a DVD but I do highly recommend hot yoga for increasing flexibility. I took up yoga to help with my gymnastics and was amazed at the results. So was my gymnastics instructor. She actually asked what I had been doing to improve my splits so quickly. I think the key was the "hot" yoga where you workout in a room that is heated. I ditto the person above who recommends attending classes. I think you will get way more out of it, plus they'll have the hot room.
posted by i_love_squirrels at 1:40 PM on June 10, 2008

Response by poster: I am in very good shape and am not a yoga beginner, but I get sidetracked when I stretch/do yoga at home. So I need something to keep me focused. If only I had time to go to a yoga class every day!

I see that Rodney Yee has a Power Yoga for Flexibility, that looks perfect. The 28-Day Exercise Plan looks interesting too, although I may still get distracted with a book...
posted by lemonade at 1:52 PM on June 10, 2008

It isnt yoga, but an excellent stretching DVD is Karen Voight Pure and Simple Stretch. Ignore the ugly workout wear and you can get a deep cleansing stretch that will make you feel fantastic. Especially great before bed.
posted by toastedbeagle at 1:53 PM on June 10, 2008 [1 favorite]

I am in very good shape and am not a yoga beginner

In that case, please ignore my comment, but I would like to offer my apologies that it was misplaced.
posted by dirtynumbangelboy at 7:46 PM on June 10, 2008

Response by poster: Hey, no worries, I wasn't too clear in the question about the primary problem being my lack of focus... :)
posted by lemonade at 8:41 PM on June 10, 2008

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