December 12, 2008

Book review: Insight Yoga (Sarah Powers)

This newest offering from Sarah Powers seems to be a follow up/book companion to her 2005 video of the same name. Through Insight Yoga, Powers blends yoga with Chinese medicine and Taoist and even Buddhist philosophies and techniques in a unique synthesis of ideas and mental and physical exercises.  Each sequence of poses is designed to stimulate specific energy pathways (meridians) within the body, which Powers treats as a unified system, rather than a series of components that happen to fit together.  She unites yin sequences (passive poses) and yang sequences (active poses) with pranayama and mindfulness meditation in a holistic attempt to bring balance to the entire body, rather than focusing on just one aspect of the self.  The only piece that is lacking is diet, to which Powers makes a passing reference, but a chapter on what would constitute food choices compatible with the philosophies of the book would have been a nice addition to the text. Insight Yoga is published by Shambhala Publications; you can get it directly from them or from your local, independent bookstore… either way, tell ’em that you read about it on Elephant Journal.com.

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