Yoga Benefits For Women
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I was introduced to Sivananda Yoga in May 06 by my Shiatsu masseuse. I had several sessions of Shiatsu for back pain relief. However, a few days after the session the pain returned. My masseuse told me that if I practiced Sivananda Yoga once a day it would significantly reduce my back pain. She covered the basic asanas with me in two sessions. I ordered “The Sivananda Companion to Yoga…” and “Yoga 101 Essential Tips”. I began performing the asanas on my own using both books as my guide. They are easy to read and fully explain the asanas.
“The Sivananda Companion to Yoga…” is more detailed. It gives a great (but brief) history of Yoga along with breathing, meditation, diet info. and health benefits (in detail using photos). My favorite part of this book is the chart for 30m or 90m sessions and also additional asanas as my routine advances. I use this book when I have more time to experiment with new asanas or as a reference.
“Yoga 101 Essential Tips” covers every basic asana and briefly touchs on diet, meditation, etc. I use this book daily because it covers a complete session.
I am a newby at yoga and highly recommend both books. As a result of doing yoga from them for approximately 3-4 weeks my body feels great, my back pain is relieved and I have either toned or lost inches around the abdomen and thighs which has always been difficult for me. My sugar cravings have decreased (once a daily user of Coca Cola and Haribo Gummies) and coffee is not desired. I am also working on a better diet from recommendations in the book.
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As a yoga teacher, I recommend this little gem to all my beginning students, along with YOGA MIND AND BODY, both by the Sivananda Yoga Centers.
101 TIPS is a great pocket reference and good for people who travel and want to take a reference along for their daily practice, while YMB contains much more detail and variations on poses.
Both present the Sivananda Yoga practice, with information on the other “5 Points of Yoga,” as presented by Swami Vishnu-Devananda, author of the excellent COMPLETE ILLUSTRATED BOOK OF YOGA. His 5 Points: exercise, breathing, relaxation, diet and meditation/concentration.
If followed closely, the system presented is stunningly effective and will have you recharged and rejuvenated in no time. Highly recommended.
A key part of Sivananda yoga is breathing with the movements. This is sadly lacking from a number of the postures illustreated in this book. There are also some postures which are considered by many yoga schools to be unsafe – namely where the neck is taken back, eg cobra, and double leg lifts. I found the book disappointing and shall not be recommending it.
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