Yoga Videos & Books I have known

Yoga for Round Bodies

Yoga for Round Bodies

I started doing yoga in college with Raquel Welch’s book on yoga.1 Even then I found yoga relaxing and energizing.  It also helped me improve my strength & flexibility.

Years later I wanted to try yoga again, but, remembering how I’d had no idea how to modify some poses, I looked for something more tailored to my sort of body.  I’d read about the video Yoga for Round Bodies, Volume 1 online and in the fat-acceptance magazine Radiance.  I ordered it and started working with it.  After a week or so I pretty much felt I knew the poses so I’d skip putting in the video and just do them at my own speed.  I still do their sequence of cat, dog, modified cobra and child’s pose a few times a week.  Between the cobra and stomach crunches the lower back issues I had for years have cleared up almost completely (I still avoid lying on my back, but it’s mostly habit at this point).

MegaYoga by Megan Garcia

MegaYoga by Megan Garcia

More recently I got the Yoga: Just My Size With Megan Garcia DVD. Like Yoga for Round Bodies, it is aimed at beginners. Most of the poses I’d already learned before, but the explanations and demonstrations seem very clear for newbies. I mostly put it in the DVD player when I want the new-agey music to help me relax, or when I’m having trouble focusing.  (A more detailed review is here – Sanity Watchers on some of the ads on that page.)

I also have Megan Garcia’s book Megayoga, which I personally prefer to the DVD because it covers many more poses and provides 30, 60, and 90-minute routines. Part of that is probably due to the difference between the desired length of the DVD run time vs what you can do in a book.

Currently I’m basing my private practice on the Megayoga 30-minute routine plus a few other things from my “Yoga for People of Size” class. (I actually got this book from the library first and ordered it when I really didn’t want to return it!)

Anyone else have fat yoga books or videos they want to share?

1It’s about as body accepting as most fitness books by actresses, which is why I’m not linking to it.

9 thoughts on “Yoga Videos & Books I have known

  1. (Here via clicking on your name @ SP. Hi!)

    I don’t know about specific books or anything, but both the Kripalu yoga instructors I’ve met have been VERY into ‘let’s work with the body you have now, not the body you wish you had.’ I think it’s because of the school’s emphasis on restorative yoga. One of the teachers had several different kinds of arthritis-related illnesses, and she could still do all sorts of crazy things because of her yoga practice.

    I usually do Ashtanga, but I wouldn’t suggest it. It’s not so much that I’ve ever heard an Ashtanga teacher imply that I was too big to do the series, but that I (at a whopping size 10, so relatively tiny) am ALWAYS the biggest person in the class, usually by about two or three sizes, and if one is sensitive to that, one might have problems.

    Regarding pain and mobility issues, ashtanga’s really athletic and doesn’t offer THAT much in the way of modifications — see Iyengar for more modifications.

    I do it because I have focus issues (lousy attention span), and the ashtanga series doesn’t actually hold any given position for more than five breaths, except shoulder and headstands. Also, it’s exactly the same every single time, which is relaxing for my brain.

    Sorry. I’ve become a yoga nerd over the last few months. Anyway, you’re ahead of me on that having-a-daily-practice thing, and also in flexibility! I mean, sure, I can put my nose to my knee in ONE position, but I can’t get my legs out in a nearly straight line like you can. I’m impressed!

  2. Hi Stephanie, welcome!

    I don’t actually have a DAILY practice, but I do practice at home once or twice a week. My teacher practices Iyengar yoga, so yes, she encourages the use of props. She also throws in some Pilates.

    One thing I’ve noticed in the class is that everyone has different issues. In my case, my belly bulk tends to be the issue to be worked around. For someone else it’s arthritis, or not having as much hip flexibility. :)

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  4. Very late to this, but I really like Abby Lentz’s Heavyweight Yoga (http://www.heartfeltyoga.com/shop.htm) I have the first one, but I see she now has a second DVD. I like that she is fat herself, so she knows how to help others modify poses and pacing. She has great body positive talk. She’s also a good example of a fit fat person since she teaches yoga, runs marathons, cycles and is a triathlete.

    You can check her out on youtube:

    • Cool! Good to know there’s another option out there. I would note that the getting down/up off the floor can be an issue for anyone who isn’t doing it regularly ;)

    • I love this video, and how positive it is! I wish there was more stuff like this on TV.

      I’ve always shied away from yoga because of how unflexible I am. I was always the one girl in my dance classes as a kid who could not for the life of me do a split. I assumed yoga would just be an exercise in failure and frustration. But I recently started doing prenatal yoga, and I have to say I really, really enjoy it. I’ve kind of accepted that I’m never going to be the most flexible person around, but I do what I can, and try not to worry about what I think I should be doing.

      I LOVE the “belly well” stuff in the video! I generally don’t have a problem with making room for my belly because I’m more of an hourglass than an apple, but I’m already having a lot of discomfort when I put any pressure on my stomach, and child’s pose has been quite uncomfortable. I can’t believe what an easy modification opening up your legs is!

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