Poetry Madness

Saturday, December 25th, 2004


Om Yoga Today: Your Yoga Practice in 5, 15, 30, 60, and 90 Minutes

by Cyndi Lee

A review by Georgie Lewis

One of the first things I loved about Om Yoga Today is that Cyndi Lee is writing for all of us who think that we should love yoga, or, rather, that we should do it more often but just never seem to have enough time.

In her introduction Lee explains that yoga actually "creates time, spaciousness, and a sense of possibility, not only in your schedule but in all of your relationships." Now, even in writing this review to a deadline my first instinct is to think: Pshaw, I just need to do things faster and then eventually I shall have some time to relax. But as an on-again, off-again, yoga enthusiast, I know that only in creating time for yoga do I get the benefits of feeling like I have time for other things. Does that sound like a contradiction? Well, Lee writes the following:

My observation is that there is a direct relationship that goes like this:

Thinking about what has to happen in the future = less time now
Moving slowly and mindfully now = more time now

Over the years I have enrolled in ten-week yoga classes, done drop-in classes, followed yoga videos and even done some yoga from memory at home. And every time I have done so the benefits are undeniably wonderful. I feel better in mind and body, I sleep better and a sense of joy remains with me for quite some time. And yet, I belong to a local gym who takes my membership money reliably despite the fact that I never visit. I have to drive there, it is too cold outside, the couch looks so inviting...

However Om Yoga Today is my inspiration and my saving grace over this stressful (not to mention fattening and libationary) holiday period. I love it because it is divided in to five separate workouts -- a five-minute workout, fifteen-, thirty-, sixty-, and ninety-minute workouts. Five minutes? Come on -- I can do that! I can do that after feeding the cats and before feeding myself, between washing machine cycles, even in the conference room when the boss isn't looking.

The book is tactile and easy to follow as it is in a spiral binder with tabbed markers for each workout. It is by those masters of stylish and cute books, the Chronicle Books gang, and they have done a lovely job at making this a most user-friendly and welcoming edition.

When listing your New Year's resolutions, why not think of giving yourself five minutes every few days? You may find that in time you'll get greedy and insist on a half hour or more every week. Be selfish enough and you may just get what you are looking for -- time for everything.

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