Testimonial by PURE Bikram Yoga Downtown student Crista B.
“A year ago I fell on a flight of stairs and my arm popped out if it’s socket. Dizzy with pain and my muscles contorted, I looked down at my arm and all I could think of, “I have to pop this arm back in! I have a public talk in 90 minutes!” So, I shoved my arm back in, slipped into my high heels and gave one of the best talks of my life. I attribute that to my level of preparedness, but also to the amount of adrenaline rushing through my body after that great fall.
But the next day and my journey over the past year has been a tough one. With a dislocated shoulder, extreme pain became the norm. My range of motion was extremely limited. I could not raise my arm above waist level for months. I lived in fear that someone would bump into me. I became constricted and fearful.
I completely stopped Bikram yoga. I felt that because I could not do any of the postures properly that I should not go. I was also scared that it would hurt. I did physical therapy for a while but it was not making the difference I wanted.
My doctor told me that I needed to move and that the worst thing I could do was hold my arm in fear. He said that I would not heal unless I pushed a little into the pain each day.
I missed Bikram yoga so much and I was suffering from such limited range of motion and pain that I decided to give it another try. I told the teacher what I was dealing with and he encouraged me to just do what I could and not to push it. My teacher also taught me how to adjust the postures so that I could participate without causing extra pain to the area.
Even if I could not do all of the postures, each class helped me to get in touch with my body. I not only dislocated my shoulder, I was dislocated from myself. I was so overwhelmed with the trauma and pain that I detached from being present in my body.
Looking in the mirror each day brought me more in tune with my body and I got to see the little progress I made each day. Instead of ignoring my pain, I had to face it every time I went to class.
I followed my doctor’s orders and pushed a little into the pain each day. After just 2 months of doing Bikram yoga 3-4 times a week, I was able to increase my range of motion tremendously.
Now a year later, I am still doing Bikram yoga. I am so close to having my full range of motion back. It has been a long journey, but I am thankful that Bikram yoga was a part of my healing journey. “