As we move into February, still working towards optimum health and wellness, I wanted to explore the different movies that connect to exercises we can all do to improve our lives. For the purposes of this series of articles, I’m going to focus on three specific areas of fitness, that we can all consider, regardless of age or fitness level. Better still, we can partake in all three without needing much in the way of gear or equipment.
Yoga, Hiking & Running
For some folks, they are totally dialed into their program and may not need a push, but seeing these movies will still offer a new connection point. There have been many films, studio narratives and indie docs, on the subjects of hiking and running, and some entertaining and educational docs on Yoga. We’re going to share a handful today.
Whichever path you choose, these practices connect body, mind and soul. I find more than just pure fitness is my running. It clears the mind, allowing for new ideas and gratitude to flow. More than just a good workout and opening of the mind, being out in nature helps connect to a deeper source of strength and confidence.
Part I - Yoga
Yoga was developed over 5,000 years ago, and is still going strong. There must be a reason for it. Even if you are not doing Yoga, chances are, you’ve heard of it. According to Yoga journal, over 36 million people practice Yoga in the US! Part breath control, simple meditation, and stretching through postures, Yoga is widely practiced for health and relaxation.
I’ve been lucky, in that I’ve had the pleasure of working with two leaders in the space, Parashakti (Dance of Liberation) and Jill Wheeler (Warrior One), as I directed their movies, seeing first hand how they continue to affect lives with their spiritual practice.
Here are 5 films you should know about:
Awake: The Life of Yogananda,
One of the best films on the subject is which was released a few years ago, and is still available on Netflix, iTunes, Amazon and Google. The LA Times called him the first superstar guru of the 20th Century. And it is rumored that Yogananda’s autobiography was the only book on Steve Jobs’ ipad.
Lapsed Hindu Vikram Gandhi conducts an experiment, in which he poses as a guru and attracts a number of devotees, but unexpectedly finds that his followers are receiving genuine benefits from his deception. The film played the festival circuit and is available online, at iTunes and Amazon.
Thirty million Americans and countless millions worldwide have taken up a practice that is transforming their lives. Follow filmmaker Suzanne Bryant as she meets with the most prominent Yoga Gurus and teachers in the west and travels to India to explore the power of this ancient practice. Along the way she discovers what YOGA IS.
Yoga was brought to the west from India by a lineage of male teachers. Now there's a generation of women who are leading the way. They're strong they're inspiring and they're radically changing peoples lives. From the busy streets of Manhattan to the dusty slums of Kenya YOGAWOMAN uncovering a global phenomenon that has changed the face of yoga forever.
Filmmaker Kate Churchill and New York journalist Nick Rosen travel the globe on a skeptical journey into the world of yoga. Seeking transformation, they end up surrounded by celebrity yogis, true believers, kooks, entrepreneurs, contradiction and disbelief. You can watch free by clicking title link or Buy DVD on Amazon.
Filmmaking for Change
This Filmmaking for Change section will present the Articles written for our Substack channel.
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