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(Yoga for the Young at Heart, P.O. Box 5337, Berkeley, CA 94705; 800-558-9642; $34.95)
The material on this CD-ROM first appeared as a videotape (entitled Staying Fit Anytime: Chair Yoga) last year, which was a nicely done presentation for chair-bound people of all kinds or anyone wanting a mild practice.
This package is apparently aimed more specifically at the growing army of desk-bound (and computer-dependent) workers. It’s advertised as an accessible and cost-effective program to help these folks release the stress and tension, prevent repetitive strain injuries, and (no doubt to make it more acceptable to the boss) increase productivity. Ward has pulled 24 screen savers from her original 45-minute video, each one describing and illustrating a different exercise for a different body part or area.
She’s also divided the video into nine three- to five-minute segments covering the breath, head, upper and lower back, arms and legs, abdominals, and meditation. You can use either the screen savers or the short videos periodically throughout the day for “yoga breaks”; or you can play the video straight through and do the entire session. Though it’s impossible to say whether people would actually stop what they’re doing to stretch their hamstrings, the program encourages exactly what most health experts tell us to do: Take a little rest now and again from our work.