Yoga By Teens is a 40 minute workout featuring the Parsons sisters. According to their website, Lauren is 16, Emily and Jessica are 13, and Jessica has Down's Syndrome. The workout is straightforward; divided in 3 sections, it has floor poses, standing poses, and seated poses. The DVD is shot outdoors, with all three girls participating. They have different degrees of flexibility, but they are all comfortable with yoga and enthusiastic in their practice. Lauren and Jessica do most of the talking, but Jessica participates too. Lauren is the most fluid speaker, while Emily's speech is a little wooden. They are obviously going through a prepared script, and it does not always flow well, but it works well enough. The production quality is reasonable, although the image is a little grainy, and the screen ratio (horizontal to vertical) does not seem quite right, either in 4:3 or 16:9. The sound quality is fine: sometimes it is a little difficult to work out what Jessica is saying, but that isn't really a problem. There are a few extras: short interviews with each of the teens, a page of text explaining yoga terms, and a bonus 2 minute sun salutation with Lauren.
This DVD is distinctively different from the few other DVDs aimed at young people. It's more home-made and traditional than Yoga 4 Teens and it has fewer features than Hemalayaa's Yoga for Young Bodies. It may be especially appealing for use with children with special needs, and some young people may be drawn to a demonstration of yoga by 3 teen sisters.
© 2008 Christian Perring
Christian Perring, Associate Professor of Philosophy, Dowling College, New York.