I wanted to tell you how thrilled I am with Bikram yoga and your studio. When I started five months ago my primary goal was weight loss (I have lost 10 pounds and at least one pants size), but I also no longer need bi-monthly massages for neck and shoulder pain. I have tons of energy, and I feel much stronger mentally and physically. I also sleep like a baby, and I’ve been told more than once that my skin looks great. I love my regular instructors who somehow offer such a unique experience with the same dialogue. I would like to thank them, and you, for everything.
Recovery After Surgery
Recently I had laparoscopic surgery. Recovery time was estimated to be three days. When I awoke from surgery, however, my left arm didn’t work from the shoulder down due to a “positional neuropathy.” As a result of this injury, all the muscles on my left side were tired and tight. I was extremely uncomfortable. I couldn’t sleep more than 3 hours at a time and walked with (as my physical therapist described it) “a posture of pain.” Afraid to move for fear that I would hurt myself more, I continued like this for more than three weeks. As a student of Yoga for You for six years, I knew the benefits of yoga and decided to attend a class. Three breaths into the first breathing exercise I was ready to throw in the towel. I couldn’t lift my arm and felt ridiculous. Years of yoga had worked their magic, however, and that little voice in my head said, “Just do what YOU can do.” I stayed for the whole class and left feeling so rejuvenated that I went back the next day for more and continued to attend classes for most of the month. It’s been four weeks since that first class back and I am pain-free and have most of the motion back in my arm. Thank you to the instructors at Yoga for You. Always helpful and encouraging, Ann Marie, Carol, Deborah, Diane and Ron, kept me coming back for more.
A Healthier Way
I am not a competitive athlete or a 20-something looking for the next trend in extreme fitness. I am an overweight mother of 2 in my late 30’s suffering from several injuries to my spine, joints and bones caused by doing other athletics including running and roller blading. I have experienced great improvements in my spinal symptoms, mood swings, PMS, nerve damage and strength. But more importantly I have learned to deal with my particular blessings and limitations. Doing my best in each class is my goal. With a healthy spine, I’ve now got a much healthier life.
Yoga Gave Me My Life Back
For 33 years, I worked as a professional Air Traffic Controller, a profession that is considered to be one of the most demanding and stressful in the world. I worked in some of the busiest airports like Los Angeles, Boston, New York and Washington, D.C. I was introduced to Bikram Yoga by a friend in 2005 when I was nearly 58 years old. I was divorced, suffering from alcohol abuse, depression, and had been diagnosed and treated for cervical spondylosis, throat cancer and had suffered a mini stroke. I was on medication for high blood pressure, high cholesterol, acid reflux disease, blood clots and depression. In 2010 I retired and attended training to become a Bikram certified teacher and by 2014 I was declared completely cancer free, off all medications and told by my doctor that there could be no other explanation but that the “the yoga saved your life.”
Sooner is Better
I have been a practitioner of Bikram yoga consistently for the past 5 years. Just recently, I injured my neck and shoulder at work. After having an MRI of my cervical spine, I was afraid to come and practice until I was able to see the doctor. After 10 days of taking 800 milligrams of ibuprofen, around the clock, with no improvement physically, and feeling terrible mentally, I had the foresight to call the studio and speak to Diane. I told her what was going on (my shoulder was completely contorted when I raised my right arm out laterally, and could not bring my right arm up nearly as high as my left). I asked if it would be safe for me to practice. Thanks to her assurance that it would be safe, as long as I was gentle with my body, I went the next day, and the day after that. By the third day my shoulder was drastically improved! I have always believed in the benefits of this yoga, but even I was amazed at the remarkable improvement in just 3 classes. I feel so blessed to have this yoga and the knowledge of the Yoga for You staff!!
Cannot live without it
The day is ALWAYS a good one when I go to Bikram Yoga—anywhere, but especially Diane Ducharme Gardner’s studio and her tribe of fabulous teachers and students (it’s a community) in Dedham. Aside from the physical benefits (which are many in my case), the centering, the tranquility, and the sense that I can handle whatever happens is all from doing Bikram Yoga.
I have multiple problems and pain from arthritis. My sanctuary used to be swimming a mile everyday; but 10 years ago, I couldn’t rotate my left shoulder–rheumatologist said: “the only thing that will help your pain is Bikram yoga”. So I’ve done 5-6 days a week for 10 years. Four surgeries later it still is my medicine for pain.
I LOVE being there; I LOVE the sequence; I LOVE the breathing; I LOVE the belonging. I used to be quite a flexible and strong “athlete” and still consider myself “incredible” for my age (67); but age and arthritis does alter my capacities. Bikram Yoga helps me to accept that.
Because of Bikram I feel “young” and really forget my age most of the time. I have the teachers (especially Diane) to thank for holding me to “the prescription.”
Thank you to all the yogis and yoginis in all the places I practice—especially at YOGA FOR YOU!
26 and 2 = 2nd to None!!!
I travel to Yoga for You in Dedham from quite a distance but I KNOW with each 90-minute class I will receive excellent instruction in Bikram Yoga. The Studio is super clean, classes are on time and the schedule is consistent with all classes being 90-minutes always and there are numerous options for times each day, 7 days per week!!
The instructors are all trained by Bikram and the dialogue is delivered with passion and conviction; emphasis on safety and proper alignment always!! Each and every instructor is personally dedicated to the student and their practice!!!
Owner, Diane Ducharme Gardner, offers a private lesson to help students maximize each posture. I recently had a “private” with Diane and could not believe how much energy I was wasting by holding my breath!! Take a private lessson with Diane; her Bikram Yoga knowledge is incredible
This is a wonderful place to get out of your head! The workout is tremendous, instructors are terrific, and the facility is top notch! Instructors are professional yet they have created a close knit community where all are welcome and embraced with generosity and kindness. I highly recommend Yoga for You!
YOGA FOR YOU has literally given me back the ability to stand on my own two feet.
When I first met Diane Ducharme Gardner, I was 32 years old and had spent half my life walking with a cane, crutches or confined to a bed. I had already had two total hip replacements and was desperate to avoid the same fate for my knees.
I’ve had rheumatoid arthritis since I was kid. It would go into remission from time to time, but when the disease was active, it was devastating. At various times it affected every joint, large and small, and did its damage. I was taking dozens pills every day and receiving weekly injections in an attempt to keep the disease under control. Even when my RA was in remission my doctors wanted me to continue taking the toxic medications and were unable to offer any relief from pain that the disease was causing except for joint replacements. I had lost substantial range of motion in most of joints and felt incredibly old. I couldn’t stand in place for more than 10 – 15 minutes a day in total. If I did, the pain would become increasingly unbearable, and I would need to use crutches to walk instead of cane, or be stuck in bed for days until the pain subsided. Sometimes my knees would also just give out from underneath me when I walked. If I didn’t have cane with me, I could fall. My legs muscles were strong. Except for getting on and off, I could easily ride a bike for miles, and could use some gym equipment, but standing and walking were very difficult and painful for me.
I wasn’t particularly impressed after my 1st class. I could hardly do a fraction of any of the postures, and didn’t feel like I was accomplishing anything. Diane told me if came 6 days a week for 90 days I would get better. She said, even though I couldn’t really do any of the postures, that if I tried to do what little I could do as correctly as my body would allow, even if it was only 1% percent of the posture, I would get 100% of the benefits. I was dubious about her claims after trying so many other alternative cures and remedies to no effect. Besides, there was no way I could afford to go to class that often anyway. But, Diane said she would let take class for free. I left that day with no intention of ever returning. [Side note: he walked out WITHOUT his cane]!
The next day I could feel that the muscles along my spine had been worked hard. I knew something positive was starting to happen to my body. I began to realize Diane had offered me the bargain of a lifetime and there was no way I wasn’t going to take advantage of it.
Slowly, I began to get better. I practiced 5 days a week and never missed a day. When I couldn’t get to class, I would practice at home. Little by little I began to reclaim full range of motion in my joints, and the constant pain I was in began to disappear. I think it took about 6 months before I could kneel down on my mat without folding 2 bath towels to kneel on. The quality of my life continued to get better and better. I was able to get off disability and return to work. I gave up my handicap placard and was able to stand in place and walk without any sort of aid for hours at time with no ill effects.
That first class was 20 years ago. Bikram Yoga continues help me so many ways. One of which is that besides having RA, I also have a few other autoimmune diseases including Crohn’s disease. Since I have been practicing, I have remained symptom free and have not had any flare ups of any kind. Other than when I needed to have a revision performed on one of my prosthetics, I have never used a cane or a crutch since or had to take any medications. The prognosis for anyone who has as a severe case RA as I had is bleak. I had literally been told by my doctors to give up hope of ever getting better and things were only going to get worse for me. I consider Bikram Yoga nothing less than a miracle and so did they!
Thank you, Diane.
Caring for the Caregiver
My mother just passed away from Breast Cancer and Altzheimers. She was diagnosed with dementia
about 10 years ago, and then my father, who had been taking care of her, died. I have been responsible for her care for the past 7 years.
I thank my luck for finding Diane’s Bikram yoga studio. It got me through many tough times. Often I would be so exhausted that I would just lie in dead body pose and listen to the words. They were metaphors for many things in my life. “Do the best you can with the body you have today” It brings so much peace, comfort and common sense. Now my mom has passed. I did a good job looking after her because I was able to keep my strength and spirits up mostly through the yoga. I am so very grateful!
I do yoga so my life doesnt kill me…
So there I was, a 350+ pound drunk, diabetic sack of sorrow lying in a hospital bed, stockpiling pain meds and contemplating suicide while the doctors tried to figure out a way to let me keep my severely burned and necrotic lower appendages. Basically, instead of agreeing to amputation and the limits that followed, I was gonna gobble as many Percocet as I could squirrel away and simply Tap-Out instead of dealing with the hand I was dealt. Luckily the Amazing staff at Mass General Burn Ward worked their miracles and 2 surgeries and 28 days later I was wheeled out a new man. At this point let it be noted that this was the longest I had gone without drinking since I had started the summer before my 7th grade year in school. I lived hard, drank like a Viking and by the time I left my job with a record company, the Rock Stars I had crossed paths with were still swapping stories about the depths of MY depravity. But that’s another story, Dear Reader….stay tuned for the book to follow! Anywhoo back to the Yoga! I had completed a “30-Day Challenge” (here I pause to smile while Diane cringes) years before at Bikram Yoga Stoughton. I had strung together about 70 days of that 30 day challenge while I found myself, briefly, off the Road. Jayme, Mandy and the BYS Family were my introduction into the Bikram Community and while I first feared incense-smoke-covered-hugs, whale songs, strolling minstrels and basket weaving seminars, what I found was the gorgeously structured routine, delivered systematically in tropical conditions that has become the Cornerstone of my success in every aspect of Life.
So what has it done? I started practicing 5 times a week on August 26, 2016. As of this writing on the 13th of December 2017 the list goes like this: I was wheeled out of the hospital and told would be walking at least with a cane for the rest of my life. I starting doing the majority of the standing series in a chair. I left the hospital with a staggering A1C indicator of blood sugar levels at a 13.2 and normal range is below 6.8. I was on all kinds of diabetes and high blood pressure meds, had been seeing a Shrink weekly for years and lets not forget the whole aforementioned sobriety issue that had gotten me kicked out of many a rehab program….
To Date: Sober, off all meds, A1C of 6.0, down 125 pounds and counting, got my walking papers from my Shrink and will be attending teacher training class with Bikram in Acapulco in April!
Bikram Yoga has become my Cornerstone, I find that if I practice regularly everything else in life seems to just fall into place…
Yoga For You is a Beautiful Studio offering 27 classes a week taught by some of the most caring and professional staff I have encountered, and so far I have practiced in at least 15 different studios in 5 states!
It’s not a quick fix, it’s not easy, and it’s not for everyone, but it works for me. If you haven’t given it a try, perhaps my story will inspire you to do so. If you have and you’re wondering about the studio…this is the place.
Thank You, Diane and Everyone from Yoga For You!
Jeffrey Douglas Whentworth Soggybottom Ohlsonzkistein (Though I've been called worse, I go by J.D.)
I Can’t Afford It . . .
I wanted to return to yoga, but I told myself I couldn’t afford it.
I had neglected self care during the difficult past two years. Although I’ve been active most of my life, my body was stiff and weak. As in getting-out-of-my-chair-hurts stiff. Standing-fully-upright-takes-a-minute stiff. At work, I sometimes struggled to stay fully focused on my clients because of my physical discomfort. I had trouble keeping up on walks or hikes. My life was becoming limited by my physical condition.
Though I “couldn’t afford” yoga, I missed half a day of work to have a hip injection. Plus the copay, plus the deductible. I realized that soon I would need physical therapy to address my pain, with a $25 per visit copay. I would need NSAIDs daily, leading to future health problems. Finally, a light bulb went off.
In the worst case, I would break even going to yoga. As a former Bikram practitioner, I also knew that the yoga would provide far greater benefits than PT, so I finally chose to invest in my health. I was discouraged by my physical condition after the first class. Even setting up many of the postures was difficult, and everything hurt. But I know how powerful it is to simply “try the right way.” In just a few months, the changes have been dramatic. I can stand and walk easily again. I sleep better. I am fully present for my clients.
I am a long way from full expression of the postures, but it hardly matters to me. I do the best I can, knowing that my body and soul are getting stronger, more flexible, and healthier every time I practice. In choosing Yoga, I choose well-being.
I can’t afford not to practice yoga.
Casual Practitioner to Believer
I have been a casual practitioner of Bikram Yoga since my wife discovered it in 2011. I have semi-believed what I was hearing about students who started with great pain and became healed through practicing, until last June. I slipped on a slippery crosswalk and fell at work. Two days after I fell, what started out as dull pain in my chest/ribs/back turned into excruciating pain. When I went to the urgent care for treatment I was given Vicodin and told I had muscle spasms. Over the next week I ended up in the emergency room 2 more times and had 2 MRIs because the pain got so great and constant. After the Vicodin ran out and I could get no more, I was taking 800 mg of ibuprofen, 1000 mg acetaminophen and a muscle relaxer around the clock for the next month. I also had to sleep sitting up with no relief in sight. I could hardly walk or breath without pain and had to stop all of my physical activities including refereeing basketball which is my avocation. I didn’t think I could go to Bikram class. Out of desperation, I went to one of my wife’s classes. During the class it felt like every movement I made was torture. I was told, just do what I can to do, as correctly as possible, and don’t push. It was not until after my third class that I noticed some brief times when the pain was a little less severe. Since nothing else had given me any relief, I went back several times. The morning after my fifth class, I woke up and for the first time in over a month I could walk without pain. I started to believe that relief was coming, even though some of the poses were still too painful to attempt. Almost a month passed and not only could I get through class with only the normal aches of class, but I have resumed basketball officiating. My wife got me a private lesson with Diane. During that lesson, I learned how to work on the healing aspects of the yoga I can honestly say that Bikram Yoga is the only thing that has brought me relief from my injury. I am now a believer. Bikram Yoga HEALS. I am very thankful.
Thank you for the wonderfully informative posture clinic. You answered all of my questions and fixed some problems I didn’t think could be fixed. I have never picked up my foot so easily for Standing Head to Knee and my lower back didn’t scream at me so I actually kicked out with relative ease. I can’t wait to find out what the next class will bring. I also appreciate your energy, enthusiasm, and commitment to doing it the right way. You don’t give up on the students. Bikram Yoga has helped me so much. I no longer have chronic lower back pain. Yoga has helped improve the stiffness in my hips from overuse due to 30+ years of belly dancing, lessened my foot cramps, and perhaps the most interesting this for me is that it is help me to be better at stillness. MaryAnna Brown
I needed more understanding
After a second hip replacement things weren’t going as well as with the first one. I knew Bikram Yoga could help, but I needed more understanding of how to use it most effectively with my new hip. I took a private with Diane and we went through each posture. She gave me corrections for each posture with an encouraging attitude that inspired me to come back soon and practice, practice, practice! Now when I do the yoga, I don’t stress about finding the perfect position and I utilize new understandings of how my unique body works. I leave the studio energized instead of drained. I am seeing the results I’d hoped for.
Just a quick note to tell you how much I enjoyed the posture clinic yesterday. There is so much to say. The basic point for me was a new-found respect for the dialogue: how deliberate, precise, descriptive, and sequential it is; how it contains the answer to almost any question about any posture; and how effective it is when applied literally, regardless of a person’s skill set. Diane was so good at conveying all of this with no BS or hard to understand jargon.
Greg, Dallas, Texas
I have been a student for a number of years and I have never been disappointed in the sheer joy instructors take in helping participants. Everyone of them greets you as a friend and takes the time to discuss where you are in your practice. Simply a great group of instructors.
Never Too Old
I am 74 It years old and suffered with sciatica for years. Also a lot
of discomfort with lower back and aches and pains in upper body aggravated by
simple every day tasks. Picking up something off of the floor was a challenge
in dealing with the discomfort caused by this simple task.
My wife of 50 years decided that I go to Bikram Yoga with her. She had
been going to Bikram for the past 5 years. She finally wore me down
and convinced me to give it a try. She said I had nothing to lose
and she was right. My plan was to somehow survived one time and then tell
her that Bikram is not for me. End of story!!
The big day finally came and I had bought a yoga mat and other accessories
that would be used only once. I was absolutely terrified to be going
considering the class takes place in a room heated to 105 degrees and class
lasts for an hour and a half. I could not sit in a movie theatre for that long
without discomfort. I had committed to go and could not back out now although
I survived my first class and strangely enough felt really good ?? Felt
good enough that I attended two more classes that week and just kept feeling
better and better. My aches and pains were becoming less and less and I was being
transformed into a Bikram Yoga advocate. My sciatica caused flashing pain
down my leg into my instep or sometimes ankle. Some days it was the right leg
and other days the left leg. It changed at will!! NO more now. All gone!
The Bikram Yoga has been amazing. Been going now for just over a year now.
It significantly improved my overall mental and physical capabilities. I still
find it hard to believe and my wife is not pestering me about going to
yoga anymore. Now I pester her!!
Bikram is a healing Yoga and is good for everyone, young and old. It works
every muscle and tendon in your body head to toe. Even the fingers, wrists
and elbows are worked which can help in preventing arthritis. We all have seen
older folks with swollen and sore knuckles and fingers. Its awful. It’s use
it or lose it when we get older. The worst thing you can do is give in to the
pain as I had done for several years. A sedentary lifestyle is definitely
not good particularly when we get older.
Most people if not all would benefit from Bikram Yoga. Yes the 105 degree
heated room also plays a part in your recovery as well as the carefully selected
26 postures that are done in class. Please note that I have a long way to go
before I will even come close to mastering most of the postures but seeing and
feeling the changes it has made for me are encouraging and positive. Have
the support of first class instructors which are all knowledgeable and always
open to your questions and concerns.
As a famous sports manufacturer always says: JUST DO IT You won’t regret it!!!!
Life Changing in Uncertain Tiems
I have significant physical limitations, chronic pain and I am waiting for a hip and knee replacement. Yoga for You has been in my life since my now teenagers were toddlers. Coming back after a (too) long time away from my practice when the COVID restrictions lifted was revelatory. It is the first time in ages I’ve walked without a pronounced limp. Emotionally, it’s a relief to be back in the studio: it’s a calming place to stay centered when the world feels so unsettled and uncertain. So grateful for Diane and the teachers at the studio.