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Best of 2015: Yoga Heals Through Commitment to the Practice

9.23.15 | By: Wendy Cook

Commitment.  Stay in the process. Consistency.  Keep your word.  Follow through. 

            …and my favorite: Tenacious.


I love saying tenacity.  It just sounds cool(to me).  Commitment to me is to be tenacious.  Not easily stopped or pulled apart.  Very determined to do something.


I am tenacious.  That is not just my opinion.  Those around me would say that I am very determined when I decide to do something(ok…some would say stubborn or bullheaded).  This way of being is exactly how I healed my chronic back pain.  I healed through the tenacity to stay in the practice of yoga.


It was not easy.  My story is not that I stepped on a yoga mat in 2002 and the healing was miraculous from the very first day.   Yes.  It did relieve levels of pain from the beginning.  AND, it took working tenaciously for the ultimate result I wanted.  Freedom from acute and chronic pain.


I suffered from 2001-2011 from cracked SI joints, herniated discs from L2-L5, and the impact of the constant inflammation.  That impact was the activation of an autoimmune disease (ankylosing spondylitis) that is a ‘sister’ to rheumatoid arthritis. 


Not sure if you did the math…2001-2011…is a decade.  A decade of life.  A decade of pain.  A decade of resting for hours after grocery shopping.  A decade of depression.  A decade of irritation.  A decade of frustration.  A decade of disconnecting due to all of these effects overwhelming me.  A decade of missing out on the vitality that is always available.  A decade of life happening and my not showing up as my best self available.


I spent many hours during these years in doctor offices and had 3 major procedures to attempt relieving the pain.  I also took embryl shots twice daily and 3 oral meds for multiple years.  Western medicine helped, but did not relieve my pain. Let me state clearly, “I believe in western medicine and I am grateful for my doctors”.   I am most grateful for the spine surgeon that refused to operate on me and sent me to a pain management specialist in 2010.


Backing up just a bit…it was at this time that I had experimented with the idea that no movement was better than moving and hurting.  Wrong.  I hurt worse due to the decrease in muscle strength and many other reasons due to the design of our body beyond our bones.  Our bodies were divinely designed to move for us to live a healthy, happy life!


It was a western medicine doctor that gave me access to get back on my yoga mat in 2010.  This time I approached my yoga practice differently.  I created a practice and a belief that meditation, positive thinking, deep breathing, and a physical yoga sequence that met my body's needs could result in the miracle healing I so desperately desired.  Yes.  I had approached the physical action before.  This time I brought in the focus(drishti), breath work, and got my ego - that is so often full of doubt - out of the way.


I believed beyond reasoning that I could heal.  I held steadfast for a decade on my yoga mat until my own curiosity of how this divine world works expanded so BIG - my commitment worked for me.  I did the work.  When it was tough.  When it seemed useless.  When it seemed stupid.  When it WORKED.  When it gave me the freedom from chronic pain and all that comes with it.


Today I still practice with commitment.  Commitment to meditation.  Commitment to deep beathing.  Commitment to a physical practice that meets my body’s needs.  Commitment to staying committed.

You too can heal from chronic pain.  You can heal in whatever area you need healing.  Just slot your "ankle", "divorce", "bad childhood", etc. into my "back pain" and know, no--BELIEVE YOUR MIRACLE IS AVAILABLE through the pracitce of meditation, deep breathing, positive thoughts, and a physical practice.



 I beleived that I would move with FREEDOM again and live a life full of connection to others from that much happier way of being!  

Commitment to the practice created it.

And it is available to you to!  With a commUNITY of support through Wendy and the Big Rock Yoga staff.

Visit our events page and join me in October for a 6 week workshop and claim your FREEDOM.



Wendy Cook leads empowerment workshops focused on physical healing, nutrition, and holistic wellness through her Empowered Life programs.




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