Sunday, September 20, 2020

Restorative Yoga: Relax. Restore. Re-energize.


Restorative Yoga is an illustrated tutorial guide for restorative and relaxation yoga written by Caren Baginski. Due out 3rd Dec 2020 from Penguin Random House on their DK imprint, it's 208 pages and will be available in paperback and ebook formats (ebook available now). 

Especially given the current world situation, relaxation and stress management are important themes for everyone. The toll that chronic stress takes on our bodies is insidious and serious; it can even be deadly. Restorative yoga is a tool which is accessible and safe and effective and can be practiced by almost everyone no matter what their level of fitness or previous yoga experience are.

The book follows a logical progression: an introduction and tips for using the book are followed by what restorative yoga is and other basic info, followed by the poses grouped thematically: forward bending poses, backbend poses, inversions twists & side bends, and restorative sequences.

The author has a reassuringly positive and calm manner of writing. She's encouraging but not strident or preachy at all. The equipment used in the book is minimal and easily sourced (she provides alternatives which most readers already have around the house). The photography in the book is clear, well modeled, and illustrative. The tutorial photos are mostly shown in series from the side and are also well modeled and clear. Each pose tutorial is explained in understandable language with step by step photos and accompanying instructions. She also explains breathing in an accessible manner.

I have been having a lot of physical therapy for a torn rotator cuff in my right shoulder. The progress has been positive but slow and painful. I've experienced benefits from the information in this book, less pain and more mobility. It's sort of difficult to really tell objectively (what would anyone have to compare it to?) but I believe my stress levels have also been ameliorated. I work in the healthcare sector, and I feel like I'm coping. I'm sure the breathing and stress management have probably helped.

Five stars, definitely worth a look for anyone interested in stress relief in conjunction with yoga practice. Works very well for beginners.

Disclosure: I received an ARC at no cost from the author/publisher for review purposes.

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