Yoga for Veterans
Originally posted on January 16, 2018
Rick decided to give Bikram yoga a try (after much trepidation) in 2008.
“I was in for a rude awakening. Halfway through the class, the room started closing in on me, the heat was unbearable, I couldn’t breathe…" Rick tried to leave the room, but the teacher convinced him to stay.
“After I recovered and was walking out the door, not believing I just got my a$$ kicked at yoga, I heard a voice say ‘See you tomorrow!’" Rick’s immediate response was, “Like hell you will.” (Whether or not this was said out loud is debatable.)
Rick couldn’t believe that he found something that he couldn’t do – and that that something was yoga. Rick ended up coming back the next day and he eventually began a regular practice.
“I was always destined to be here, the way I’ve lived my life.” By his 3rd year of practicing, Rick was off pain medication and had stopped drinking. He could run and swim much better, and he was started to gain more flexibility. He also says that his interactions with people have vastly improved. He now has lots of yoga friends.
Rick strongly encourages other veterans to practice yoga to help with injuries and Post Traumatic Stress Disorder. “I still have a long way to go, but my quality of life has drastically improved. I only wish that I had started practicing much sooner. It’s a lifelong process, and I’m proud to say that I’m a yogi.”