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Miss epiphany "epiphany90" (london)

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Yoga for Runners
Yoga for Runners
by Christine Felstead
Edition: Paperback
Price: 9.79

6 of 6 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Bought this as a companion to the DVD but works well as standalone, 29 Jan 2014
Verified Purchase(What is this?)
This review is from: Yoga for Runners (Paperback)
Loved the DVD but wanted to see if I could build a programme using the moves in the DVD (as they work!) to fit more within my schedule. How the book is written and structured really works for me.

Introductory sections cover benefits of running, consequences and how yoga can assist in rectifying imbalances; table of typical running injuries and specific poses that can assist. All written in a straightforward, easy, not overcomplicated and in an informative style. Next section breaks down into different body sections: feet, knees, spine, core, hamstrings. hips, restoratives poses. Each section has a breakdown of that body part, a diagram, how the muscles and joints work together, and then poses specific to that body part. Each pose for that section has a page dedicated with a clear photograph of the finished pose, detailed point by point instruction, and benefits. Next section has the sequences: 10 in all, ranging from quick 5 min poses to do in front of the TV, essential ones after a run, 10 min 'runner's hot spots' (good all rounder that I love), longer 30 min weekly sequence, 45 and 60-75 min sessions. Next set of poses designed in programmes for specific body focus areas. Also a section on common yoga injuries and how to mitigate e.g. when doing downward dog my wrists get tired quickly and there were really helpful tips (e.g. contract upper arm muscles and imagine pulling weight up and through back) that has really helped with this.

Only downside is that this would be much better if it were ring-bound so it could lie flat, but I cannot speak highly enough about the content. For me, I started with her Intermediate DVD first which means I now really understand what she means in the book. However, if you are already familiar with the more typical yoga poses (note no inverted poses here) then this should be a really good addition to your library. Plus, when I can't face the full length DVD I have found myself regularly doing the 10 min session so anything that keeps me coming back fro more can't be bad. Finally, still seeing improvements in hip mobility, general flexibility and alignment.


Yoga for Runners: Intermediate Program [DVD] [US Import]
Yoga for Runners: Intermediate Program [DVD] [US Import]
Dvd ~ Christine Felstead
Offered by Fulfillment Express
Price: 12.32

2 of 3 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Equally good for runners and non-runners alike, 29 Jan 2014
Verified Purchase(What is this?)
Why buy?

I an definitely not a runner but tend to do a lot of walking - nothing strenuous but regularly, work in an office and wear heels most of the time. I practice belly dance for fun and have noticed that one hip/leg was tighter than the other, a shoulder had less mobility and clicky knees at times. Yep, middle-age and laziness catching up with me I assume. I use home yoga DVDs on and off, mainly a fan of Rodney Yee (Power Yoga) and some of Shiva Rea's (Yoga Shakti. Daily Energy, Fluid Power). Was browsing to see what new offerings were around and spotted reviews for this on the US site so ordered on a whim as I wanted poses focused on the hips, glutes legs and core.

Content

This is around 1hr20 mins so not a quick practice, however, it has a broad breakdown of sections: warmup, sun salutations, standing poses, seated, cool-down so it is possible to decide that you just want to do a warmup and salutations and be done in 28 mins. It claims to be intermediate and it could be classed as such as you hold the poses for a far longer time than I am used to in vinyasa flow, so it really helps you to focus on the pose/alignment. However, there are no inverted poses nor any that require you to be super-flexible; just poses to strengthen and stretch with focus on typical runners issues (hamstrings, hips, knees, feet, core, spine). There is a group of a few people and she narrates the poses while they move into them, walks around adjusting positions and gives tips on benefits and how to improve alignment.

Pro's:
Her explanations are really clear. I generally like to practice poses with my eyes closed and she gives clear directions that I can follow without looking now I'm more familiar with the programme. However, while I think you need to have an understanding of the basis poses, she demonstrates typical errors and how to get into poses, using blocks/strap if needed. Also reminds you of certain things that were accurate to how I was struggling with the pose.

It does have a few planks in it, not my favourite, but really good to see it covers the whole body, not just the lower. She seems to really understand what she is talking about and is clear on how certain poses provide benefits to parts of the body. I'm not yet bored of hearing that as I find that more motivating. There is a general relaxed feel to the whole thing - very calm and soothing, much like a yoga class.

Con's:
Her voice is slightly annoying with drawn out "inhale and exhale" but I kind of hear past that - not a problem enough to knock off a star. Finding time to do the full DVD mid-week is very hard, but I get round that by doing 20 mins when unable to do the full session.

Does it work?
As above, I use various Yoga DVDs at times but after two weeks of practicing bits of it around 3 times a week, for the first time I can feel a noticeable difference in my previous tightness and how I walk - I seems to walk a lot straighter than before and my hip flexors are definitely less tight; knees not clicking and I've become more automatically aware of my posture. She gives EXCELLENT tips on posture of feet and legs in poses and I realise I lock my knees which has been contributing to pain so now make efforts to consciously realise when I do this. I wondered if she had a book that I could use when away from home and she does - equally good. If you are a runner, this would be a great DVD for you. If not, and just generally realising joints and muscles are stiffening up a bit then this is great. It is not that easy due to length of time you hold poses, but it has made a real difference to my upper body strength and most importantly, lower half. If you like doing an yoga practice at home then I don't think you can go far wrong and one of the benefits of this one is that it provides noticeable physical benefits as it intends.
Comment Comment (1) | Permalink | Most recent comment: Feb 17, 2014 10:36 AM GMT


Wooden Aromatherapy Box-holds 24x10ml
Wooden Aromatherapy Box-holds 24x10ml
Offered by Esthers Gifts
Price: 14.99

6 of 6 people found the following review helpful
2.0 out of 5 stars You get what you pay for, 5 Sep 2013
Verified Purchase(What is this?)
Really wanted to love this but was sadly disappointed by the craftsmanship..

Pro's: the top of the box as pictured is accurate and looks lovely. If you don't move or open(!) it too much it will do. It fits 24 bottles as described. As it is its main selling point, I'll repeat, the lid looks lovely. Vaguely polished/smooth feel to the box.

Con's: It is possible my expectations were set too high, or there is a reason why there is no pic of the interior, but it is constructed like I made it myself. The key issue with what I received was that the hinges are obviously and badly put on, with rough edges, and so the lid is at a slant and does not sit flush with the rest of the box. The very flimsy clasp is therefore being pulled across to rectify when closing and doesn't look or feel like it will hold up to this for long. The separation inside to accommodate 24 bottles was not exactly symmetrical (one at the back barely made it into its compressed gap - was someone drunk or did it get booted while in transit? - and would never let the lid drop back under own momentum otherwise suspect that will be off. Basically, it has the feel of, if accidentally dropped or not handled with care, it will bust apart into its various bits.

Ultimately, it will do for now as I need a box, but in hindsight it may have been worth paying a little extra for a more quality-controlled and potentially long-lasting item. Still love the design on the lid though. If this doesn't last for long I would not head for a repeat purchase. Would definitely not advise giving as a gift unless you pass if off as a home-made item made by your child. A very young child.


Toshiba SD3010KE DVD Player (Multiregion, HDMI, Upscaling 1080p)
Toshiba SD3010KE DVD Player (Multiregion, HDMI, Upscaling 1080p)
Offered by magicdiscounts
Price: 47.93

5 of 5 people found the following review helpful
1.0 out of 5 stars Stopped playing discs after 3 months., 18 Jan 2013
Verified Purchase(What is this?)
When it DID work, really loved the quality of the picture and it played all of my non-UK discs with no problems...for 12 weeks. I think one other reviewer talks about the similar problems I had - arbitrarily not recognising discs, spitting them out, awful grinding sounds, leaving scratches on disc, coming up with disc error etc. Did the usual disc clean which was a waste of time. Not happy and won't go anywhere near this model again. Might just be a dodgy one as other reviews are positive but for me, wouldn't touch this with a barge pole. Such a shame as great upscaling picture. If it worked for longer than a few weeks. Fuming.


8Kg Solid Cast Iron Russian Kettlebell Black
8Kg Solid Cast Iron Russian Kettlebell Black

1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars I won't be going back to vinyl, 17 Jan 2013
Verified Purchase(What is this?)
Having needed to do some decent cardio and tone up a soggy middle (the 5ft apple-shaped person curse), I discovered kettlebells a while ago (LOVE THEM) and originally purchased a set of vinyl bells as a starter. They were ok but were catching on my hands where the pieces fit together so I was forced to wear gloves which I dislike, I couldn't comfortably do 2-handed swings (and I have small hands) and the bell part was large to say the least! Needed to increase the weight and having read around a bit, the common consensus was that cast iron bells were the way to go. Wasn't prepared to pay a ridiculous price and wasn't sure at the time whether the differences between cast iron and vinyl were really that big a deal however after dithering took the plunge and decided to give this product a go, despite it having no reviews.

Seller actually communicated and used a delivery company that texted their delivery time with option to reschedule so a positive start. Firstly, this 8kg bell is painted a mat black colour with no rough edges. Looks very similar to the picture except there is not a clearly defined flat base as the picture seemed to indicate. This is a good thing. The base is flat but does not look like separate parts stuck together (as in vinyl). The handle comfortably allows me to use two hands for swings with no catching at all except for the inevitable wear on my pen-pushing hands. The black does come off ONLY if scratched (don't drag across the garage floor), but how likely is that to happen? The bell portion is half the size of my current 4kg vinyl bell and I can't stress enough how much better it feels having the smaller bell in comparison to the vinyl, especially when doing swings. This design is also ergonomically ideal for doing cleans jerks and snatches.

Having used this for a while, I'm intending to replace my lighter bells (I refuse to go back to vinyl as the balance now feels off) with these iron versions and I'll be coming back to this seller to get them. A really good price and well worth the money, considering it should last for ages. For those clued up enough to know exactly the benefits of working out with kettlebells (why do more people not know about these????)and have to operate within a budget, I would strongly recommend getting this at the appropriate weight. For all newbies I can't stress enough, definitely get the cast iron versions the difference is incredible. For those well used to kbells, my personal opinion is that this is a well-made and solid smooth functional product designed to deliver. I accept it is ultimately a lump of cast iron metal that I can swing around, however, only using vinyl bells previously I can't stress enough how much I love this cast iron version.


Hama DVD-ROM Laser Cleaning Disc
Hama DVD-ROM Laser Cleaning Disc
Price: 6.22

1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Saved me from getting a replacement - brilliant, 21 Jan 2012
Verified Purchase(What is this?)
My lovely Samsung surround sound system (HT-Z220) had got to the stage where the sound was fine but the DVD player varied between the picture only playing with extreme pixellation (unwatchable), or it came up as 'disc error' and stopped. Recently the DVD player stopped playing discs altogether. Unamused. Couldn't afford to get a replacement system, plus it was only the DVD player that was knackered, so trawled through some trouble-shooting pages that indicated the lens should be cleaned as this could cause the problem (Yes, I'm technologically incompetent). Read some reviews on amazon, wanted to swerve getting anything where you had to put liquid on a disc, and this item came up with quite a large number of positive reviews. From reading these, thought this might be better suited to disc drives in laptops, but for under a fiver it couldn't hurt.

Popped this disc in with the arrow facing directly into the DVD player, it took 30 seconds to run through after which it states cleaning is finished. I ran it through again to be on the safe side (I get lots of dust and the DVD player had been through 3 years of hard core use). Put in a disc that has never played and now it is perfect. Also tried my DVDs purchased from the USA as these had stopped playing a long while ago and once again perfect play.

I can see from other reviews it hasn't always worked, but for my DVD player it sorted it right out. Fiver very well spent.


Belly Blitz: 12 minute workouts to tone your abs with Suzanne Bowen [DVD]
Belly Blitz: 12 minute workouts to tone your abs with Suzanne Bowen [DVD]
Price: 9.63

84 of 84 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Effective exercises, engaging presenter, definitely one of my better purchases, 9 Jan 2011
Verified Purchase(What is this?)
Six segments, 4 x 12 minutes long, one 7 min and one 5 minute section. The 5 min session is a 'fat blast' which I thought would be rubbish 5 min cardio but actually involves key core ab exercises targeting all aspects of the abs so brilliant! 'Metabolism Bootcamp' is slightly different as it aims to do low impact high-intensity movements focuing on the legs. Think Exhale Core Fusion-type leg exercises:low squat, then pulses, up on your toes etc. 'Long Lean and strong' does what it says, and 'Absolute Challenge' (7 mins) is another tough set - pikes and the like.

As a whole, I found this DVD to be very tough, but effective, and a good step up from the 10 min solution 'blast off belly fat'. Probably wouldn't recommend this to someone who is just starting working on their abs as it might be a touch off-putting (start with the 10 min solution DVD), but can't deny it will be brilliant for most people. She also offers modifications through the various sections e.g. stay on knees when doing planks. Very good when added onto your usual cardio.

There's no messing, introduction or talk about benefits of doing the DVD. Put it in and it goes straight into a choice of sections or 'play all' option. The presenter is clear in her descriptions and I very much like her articulate and clear style. I've tried all sections now and my personal favourite (well, hate it but it's been very effective in flattening out my lower belly) is 'Sleek Physique' which is all about planks, planks with leg-lifts, side planks with movement etc. Even the 'classic abwork' does not follow the usual crunches. Rather you lift head and shoulders 'up and over' and do exercises in that position so you avoid using momentum though doing traditional sit-ups, and instead have to rely on ab strngth. Very tough, don't be discouraged it got ever so slightly easier for me on about the third session. The DVD reminds me of the Core Fusion Exhale DVD style exercises, so if you like those, try this as well (although this DVD seems much more interesting, perhaps because of the 12 min sections and number of diferent exercises in each section?)

My advice is that you need to be comfortable with engaging your core and 'zipping-up' as per pilates exercises, and to definitely have a rest if you feel strain in your lower back. There's also no cool-down sretches aside to break up certain exercises, but easily added on.

I tend to check out amazon.com reviews to see if a new product is any good and as another reviewer has said, it is sold as 'Gorgeous Core' in the USA. The front cover of this DVD implies there are only three sections which almost made me head off to buy the USA version but no, it is exactly the same. I also have 'Perfect Abs' which in comparison is also very good, but that one is a lot more traditional in terms of standard crunches, sit-ups etc. I much prefer this DVD as I find it more effective in terms of flattening out lower abs and cincing in the sides of the waist. I reckon if you do some reasonable cardio as well then you are onto a winner to see noticeable results around the waist section. I am apple shaped so have to work hard to try and cut the gut down, and I've seen a reduction in inch size so far, which for me means I'll continue using.

So having rambled for a while, my personal opinion is that a) it works, b) good format and timings, c)non-irritating presenter. Definitely recommend.
Comment Comments (2) | Permalink | Most recent comment: Dec 19, 2012 9:08 AM GMT


Tae-Bo II: Everybody Get Ripped [DVD]
Tae-Bo II: Everybody Get Ripped [DVD]
Offered by figswigs
Price: 19.99

2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars SO good, 2 Jan 2010
Verified Purchase(What is this?)
Been on the hunt for this one for a while following positive reviews on amazon.com. Note, this IS different from the Get Ripped DVD in the 'Ultimate' collection (the one with Billy on the cover). Have to say, and I'll be brief, this is better than the Ultimate DVDs (although wise to start with those first as they are such a great introduction to the world of Tae bo). Really upbeat, effective, he does have issues with repeating equally on both sides as per usual but as a whole, LOVE this DVD. It works. You will lose weight using this regularly. Can't rate highly enough. Also a bit more professionally put together than his previous ones. You will work arms (those reverse speedbacks are a killer, made the tops of my arms hurt hurt for two days and I'm used to tae bo), abs, and especially legs. There is a basic 30 min version, hour long advanced and 8 min quick hit, plus instruction session. The only type of cardio exercise I keep coming back to. Excellent for home DVD workout people who hate 'celebrity' DVDs, on the basis that this actually works and is great for releasing aggression. I always end up sweaty, but happy I've made it through.


Exhale Core Fusion - Thighs And Glutes [DVD]
Exhale Core Fusion - Thighs And Glutes [DVD]
Price: 8.99

9 of 9 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Excellent, boring, but works, 2 Jan 2010
Should be used purely for toning. This is based upon Callanetics (stand in front of a chair, heels together, toes apart, and rise up on your heels then lower in various exercises), and is divided into 5 10-min segments. I admit,the husband and wife presenters aren't the most dynamic but frankly, all I'm interested in is the exercise, and I also put music on so that helps. Check out amazon.com reviews for full details, this is a really effective DVD. Also, in its extras, it has a sections from their other DVD's, and the arm segment here is excellent. This is not an easy DVD, but does work. If you want to tighten up your jiggly thighs, tighten up your rear, and improve your flexibility then this is a great DVD to do, but regularly if you want to see results. I have a couple of knee issues, and am generally fine doing this DVD but the key here is alignment - if you fall out of it then you might have problems. It is NOT easy but I strongly recommend this DVD as an addiiton to your general cardio. As an idea of effectiveness, I've been working on this for the last 3 weeks but slacked off my cardio, and now my middle looks much larger as my legs have slimmed down and my waist hasn't followed suit grrr. Be warned! Give it a try


The Pilates Bible: The Most Comprehensive and Accessible Guide to Pilates Ever
The Pilates Bible: The Most Comprehensive and Accessible Guide to Pilates Ever
by Lynne Robinson
Edition: Paperback
Price: 12.91

194 of 194 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars The title doesn't lie - truly accessible, 2 Jan 2010
Verified Purchase(What is this?)
To set context, I'm bit of a home exerciser, and have a couple of pilates books. The 'bible' itself I imagine contains a few details from other Body Control Pilates books (and I have the The Complete Classic Pilates method), however, where this one leaps ahead is that it is truly accessible.

It sets out beginner, intermediate and advanced exercises by chapter, and at the end of each, it lists 20, 30 and 40 min exercise plans for each level using these exercises. Prsonally, I find this much better than showing a beginner pose, then intermediate, then advanced on sequential pages rather than chaptering. Very helpful and clear. The exercises themselves are laid out with 2 pages per exercises, extremely clear pictures showing the poses as you move through them and good detail, but not too much (the problem with the previous Complete Classic Pilates Method, although a good book for detail, but tiny writing and a nightmare if practicing at home). It then has chapters showing exercises for actual studio equipment (pointless for me personally but hey, still good), exercises using a resistance band, the circle, ball, free weights etc. It then has chapters listing helpful exercises for various aspects relating to health issues and to resolve work/sport issues. Interestingly, it take typical exercises such as squats and when using weight equipment at the gym, and points out how pilates can help ensure correct posture when doing these (all with pictures)

It's not a small book, over A4 size, and pages lay out flat.

I have the Alycea Ungaro and other Pilates books, but wish I had had this when I first developed an interest in pilates. This would be good for absolute beginners, 'long-term' beginners and those who have delved more deeply. It also points out common mistakes for each exercise. In an ideal world, I would have liked to have seen for each exercise the specific areas it targets, but as it states, each exercise targets multiple areas.

Truly a great book - it's strengths lie in the clarity of pictures and descriptions of each movement (spaced over 2 pages when opened flat)and its coverage of a number of areas. Although true pilates aficiandos may not be happy with this (not sure why, but have to cover myself), personally, I have to say this is definitely one of my better buys. I've found the Body Control pilates videos boring and this book has really helped me to revitalise my interest. I recommend this book for beginners and intermediate, and sure it would be of value to others. Also, a good price for what you are getting. The title of the book really does sum up what it covers. As I don't have a lot of other Body Control pilates books/DVDs (did I mention I found them boring/painfully detailed?) it doesn't appear to be covering a lot of previously well-trodden ground to me, so as you have probably gathered, I'm REALLY happy with this - so much so that I have no intention of buying another pilates book for the forseeable future. Normally a good sign. Highly recommend.
Comment Comment (1) | Permalink | Most recent comment: Jan 29, 2012 10:22 PM GMT


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