YOGA FOR A STRONG AND HEALTHY BACK

2001, $2.99, at Goodwill Superstore on San Fernando

First Impression: This is how you train a cat to jump through a hoop.

Second Impression: Make the circle of your arms smaller and smaller until your cat loses interest.

We are back in the Yoga Zone, a series of videos that are easy to make fun of, and actually are very affective for your back.

Let’s travel to Jamaica for the first of the two, 20-minute workouts. Engage!

We beam into a tropical forest. Jeanne, who demonstrates the poses, is thinking about her recent audition for Ivory Soap, and wishing she hadn’t flubbed her one line:

Meanwhile, instructor Jennifer prepares us for blastoff!

Quick poll, whose hair got extra frizzy from the humid climate?

We move into Easy Seat right before right before the camera crashes into this light fixture.

We move from the forest to the beach for Workout Two. “Welcome to Yoga Zone. I’m Douglas,” smirks the instructor in a smug newscaster voice. Oh, Douglas, where have you been hiding? I can already tell you are a treasure. I know I will be amused and entertained as well as toned and refreshed.

Douglas is accompanied by Suzanne, whose mild expression conceals a rich inner life:

We execute a twist and Douglas comments, “that’s niiice,” in the most sarcastic tone you can possibly imagine. Suzanne smiles because the routine is only twenty minutes long, and she’s on a free trip to Jamaica.

Douglas, in his perfect diction, frequently directs us to “tuck your tailbone between your cheeks,” and something about his pronunciation of cheeks is just hilariously gross.

We move through some standing poses and the track gets glitchy. Nooo! I want more Douglas and Suzanne! When the DVD finally smooths out, it settles on this image:

It looks as though Suzanne will be the Final Girl of this centipede. After the forward stretch, Douglas suddenly barks, “Suzanne, come up to standing!” Wow, ok. 

Pressing down on our hips with our hands, Douglas asks, “feel that thrust in your torso?” And Suzanne can’t help but make a face.

She could have been a Marilyn Monroe impersonator, but she overslept the day of auditions. Now she’s paying for it with time with Douglas.

“That’s niiice Suzanne. So beautiful,” he comments.

Is he in love with her? That’s niiice.

Then we hold Boat Pose to tone our abs. “Twenty breaths,” commands Douglas, then with a grin, “Just kidding!” Good one!

Perhaps dismayed that no one laughed at his joke, he says ominously, “Lower all the way down into Corpse Pose. You deserve that.”  

Deserve what? 

Deserve what, Douglas?