YogaShelf DVD Review: Anatomy for Yoga with Paul Grilley

DVD Review: Anatomy for Yoga with Paul Grilley

DVD Anatomy for Yoga Paul GrilleyFeaturing: Paul Grilley
Pranamaya Inc (Nov 25, 2003), 4 hrs + Bonus Material


Well Paul, your message got through to me: it’s all about compression. Anatomy for Yoga is a huge eye opener. Many people assume if you keep practicing yoga that you will someday accomplish every pose. Paul Grilley bursts this sparkly bubble.

If you had your heart set on fancy poses, you might feel depressed after watching this DVD. As Paul’s students demonstrate his points, you may see yourself in them and realize… supported headstand won’t be possible or safe because of your body proportions. Or, in triangle pose, you might never be able to toss that block aside if your hip bones keep your hand from reaching the floor.

Paul’s key message is clear. Discover whether the ceiling or wall you are hitting is caused by tension (tight muscles) or compression (bones hitting each other). You can work on those tight muscles, but you can’t move your bones.

Paul Grilley

If you are unfamiliar with Paul’s work, you should check him out. He is a Yin Yoga teacher with a focus on anatomy in yoga practice. He and his wife run Yin Yoga Teacher Training in California as well as retreats. Paul has an abruptly honest approach which will make you smile and maybe even giggle, all the while soaking up knowledge.

Reasons to put Anatomy for Yoga on your bookshelf:

  1. Interesting: it’s about anatomy and it actually kept my attention the entire time!
  2. Terminology: you will come away feeling like you know more about your body, but you won’t remember all the big words. Paul balances his teaching perfectly — not overloading the viewer with new terminology.
  3. Conversation: it feels like you are there in Paul’s class. His tone is friendly and conversational.
  4. Demonstrations: when dealing with a complicated topic, visuals are essential. Paul’s teaching style is very interactive. The student demonstrators have different body make-ups that prove his point: no one will experience yoga in the same way.
  5. Bonus Features! Enough said.

Anatomy for Yoga Paul GrilleyLasting Effects:

Anatomy for Yoga made me sad initially before I set aside my competitive, perfectionistic nature and then felt even more energized to practice. Ok, so some poses I might struggle with because of tight muscles while in others my bones are to blame. But, this new knowledge shows that competition is irrelevant to yoga practice. You truly can’t carry on comparing yourself to others when our bone structures are not the same. Valuable take-away here: stop fighting your body and just go practice. Your yoga experience will not be the same as anyone else’s.


Anatomy for Yoga has something to offer anyone who has been practicing yoga for awhile and feels like they have hit the ceiling. This DVD is also gold for any yoga teacher. Beginners with minimal knowledge of poses would probably not benefit from this DVD.

YogaShelf Rating 5/5.

Get it:

Anatomy for Yoga is available on Pranamaya, Amazon


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