Roger's continuously improving standing head to knee

Testimonial by PURE Bikram Yoga student Roger G.

My story is pretty common I feel. I played sports all through high school and was fortunate enough to get a scholarship to a D1 school. I was able to compete at the highest levels during college and for several years after graduating.

My knee and lower back took a beating though. I retired and let myself indulge in the “bad eating, no exercise” regimen. 40 lbs gained – I tried to get back in some shape. Started jogging and playing basketball again, but it turns out I had done permanent damage to my knee. My doctor told me that if I did not stop playing basketball and cut back on the running, I would be getting a knee replacement before I was 40!

I found my way to Bikram yoga. At first, I approached it as I did every other workout: tried to muscle through it. No matter how hard I tried, it got harder and harder though. I STRUGGLED. Then I did a Challenge; which was exactly what everybody said it would be… For me it was such an accomplishment just to finish! I got an “I survived a 60 day Bikram Challenge” shirt – it is probably one of my favorite shirts!

Unfortunately, all the damage I had done to my knees and back came to a head, and I ended up having a knee surgery last November to correct a slight tear in my left knee meniscus.
But I was set on getting back to where I was before the surgery and came to class 3 days post-op. Everyone at the studio, students and instructors, were so supportive of me. I am sure that the yoga had a direct impact on how quickly the range of motion returned. My doctor was amazed by my quick recovery.

I am grateful every time I step into the studio.

It’s been such a transformative process over the years; 6+ and counting. The real surprise has been how coming to class allows me to “not think, just do”. I am able to let go of the stressors of everyday life.

I still struggle in class. I still try to muscle through it. I sweat so much that it almost took an ambulance ride to learn about the importance of hydration. (I owe a few teachers a lunch for getting me through that!!!) I am still amazed by the people and stories. Still amazed that our instructors are so good. I keep trying to improve every class.

My advice: go as often as you can. Though the class is always the same 26 postures, it is different every time. Listen and hear the instructors – they do care about you so much. Trust what you put into class, you might surprise yourself!

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