YogaMinded; 18241 McDurrmott West,
Suite A; Irvine, CA 92614; DVD; 90 minutes.
It's odd that teenagers have been given such short shrift by yoga video makers. There are at least half a dozen decent videos around for kids 10 years and younger, and hundreds of videos for adults, but precious few are aimed at teens. While there's little doubt that yoga can enormously benefit stressed-out teens, video producers and yoga teachers may figure that they have too many other things on their minds to care about yoga, and that a video directed solely at them will go begging for attention. Whatever the reason, we can thank Christy Brock, a Southern California yoga instructor and something of a yoga-for-teens expert, for this contribution.
There are two main tracks on the DVD. The first is a 55-minute instructional class, in which Brock guides her four teenage charges—superior models all—through the details of a long asana series, which includes Sun Salutation, hip openers, standing and abdominal poses, backbends, seated poses, and relaxation. On the second track, she leads a no-holds-barred 30-minute practice session that should convince even the most skeptical teen that yoga isn't just for little kids making like animals or aging grownups desperately trying to preserve their rapidly decaying bodies and minds.
Brock has been working with teens for several years, and her approach is both authoritative and compassionate. She understands how essential it is when teaching teens to keep the proceedings interesting and hopping along. She has a keen eye for alignment without sweating the small stuff and boring the viewer to death; so while the 30-minute practice is vigorous, it's perfectly safe as long as the practitioner adheres to Brock's teaching in the instructional segment.
Yoga 4 Teens is a dandy practice companion, whether as an exercise and stress-relief program or to supplement sports-related activities. It's also an informative how-to-teach-teens manual for yoga teachers who work with (or hope to work with) this age group.
Contributing Editor Richard Rosen teaches public classes in Northern California. He is also the author of The Yoga of Breath: A Step-by-Step Guide to Pranayama.