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Sterling Changed Tyloria Crenshaw’s Life in Multiple Ways

By Testimonial

Like many people when they seek out yoga, Tyloria Crenshaw was looking for something to help relieve stress when she discovered Sterling Hot Yoga & Wellness in 2011. 

“I had gone through some life changes, and one of my best friends was diagnosed with breast cancer,” she said. “I saw a story on Today about Bikram yoga. I googled and found a studio in Mobile. I called Lucille, went by the studio and the rest, as they say, is history!”

Tyloria hadn’t practiced yoga prior to her start at Sterling, but the initial results were enough to keep her coming back! 

“When I first started, I dropped about 2 dress sizes and came off several medications,” she said. “Now that I have a consistent practice, my doctor just tells me to keep doing what I’m doing.”

But Tyloria didn’t stop there. 

“My friends encouraged me to share this [before and after] after so many people were shocked by my previous photo. The one on the left was taken Sept. 12; the one on the right Dec. 31,” she said. “What did I do? A major lifestyle change! I changed my eating, took a good long look at myself and stepped up my yoga practice. I made it through the holidays and gallbladder surgery and still managed to lose more than 20 pounds!”

Among those changes were giving up sugar, stepping up her yoga practice with the help of Sterling’s 2020 year-long yoga challenge and regularly using red light therapy with Coastal Contours & Wellness.

“I have lost 31 lbs since September, 4 inches off my waist and I’m building muscle in my legs and arms,” she said. “I’m so grateful for this challenge and this yoga. I’m committed to my healthiest self!”

Seeing those results is part of what keeps Tyloria motivated to keep practicing. 

“I see the changes in my body and my health overall, and everyone is always so positive and encouraging,” she said. “I get support from people as soon as I walk in the door. After a while, your body gets used to it and starts to crave the stretching, breathing and sweating. It’s great stress relief, it’s meditation and relaxation. I don’t have ANY trouble sleeping!”

But it wasn’t always as easy as Tyloria makes it seem now, going on nine years after she started practicing. 

“My first class was a 90-minute class, and it was taught by a visiting teacher,” she said. “It was challenging, but it was something I wanted to do. With every posture, I kept thinking ‘I’m going to learn this; I’m going to do this; I’m going to get this!’

“I wasn’t’ discouraged—just determined,” she said. “It was hot and I kept looking for ways to cool off. I was wiping sweat! But after a while, I was so focused on what I was trying to do, I didn’t worry about sweat or anything else.”

Along with Tyloria’s determination, staying focused on her newfound yoga practice was easier because Sterling was close by, convenient and it offered a flexible schedule. 

“Most of all,” she said, “ everyone was so friendly and positive. Even when I was feeling down, no matter what was going on with my day, I would be so glad to get the studio. It is truly my happy place!”

Since practicing consistently, Tyloria has noticed major changes in her body and mind, but she’s most surprised at the smaller changes that happen by being dedicated to showing up on her mat often. 

“I’m surprised by the way my body responds in small ways,” she said. “Maybe deeper breathing, greater stretching, lengthening and expanding. I’m building muscle and feeling and looking leaner. I’m amazed that I can put my leg over my head in standing bow (my daughter begs me not to tell people that) and that I finally can touch my forehead to the floor between my feet!”

Getting started can be intimidating for new students, but Tyloria said it doesn’t have to be because yoga is “equal opportunity.” 

“Anybody can do it! You don’t need special skills or equipment,” she said. The hardest part is getting in the room—just do it! You will get so much support from teachers and other students. It is the most positive, encouraging thing you can do for yourself. Your body will thank you and your mind will be grateful!”

But perhaps the biggest impact Sterling has had on Tyloria’s life is influencing her to become a yoga teacher. 

“Even as a teacher, I feel that my first responsibility is to a consistent yoga practice,” she said.

“I owe it to myself and to my students. I think the students are encouraged by it and I think it makes me a better teacher because I’m right there with them. Bottom line is that I believe I should ‘practice’ what I preach!”

Sterling Hot Yoga & Wellness changed Tyloria’s life in many ways, and it can change yours too. To get started, sign up here for our 30-day intro and get unlimited classes for just $30! 

 

Candice Cravins Finds Fitness and Wellness Home at Sterling

By Testimonial

Candice Cravins, a long-distance runner who had practiced vinyasa flow and hot vinyasa flow before she started practicing at Sterling Hot Yoga & Wellness in January of this year, wasn’t sure anything could have prepared her for the initial shock of entering the hot room. 

“All I could think was ‘does it really need to be this hot in here!?’” she said. “I made it through, picked up my “I Survived” button and the front desk and thought “when can I take my next class?”

Though Candice had taken her first yoga class in college, she was “totally new” to the traditional 26+2 format when she took the Original Hot 60 at Sterling earlier this year. 

“I loved the structure and order of the class, along with the extra challenge of the heat, made a mental note to invest in more sweat-wicking leggings and later returned to take advantage of the “30 Days for $30” offer,” she said. 

As a newcomer to Mobile, Candice passed by the studio every day on her way to the University of South Alabama, and she kept thinking “I really need to try that place out!,” she said. 

When she took a look at the class schedule online, Candice was surprised by the variety. “I loved that I could get my high-intensity interval, strength and core training, in addition to yoga, all in one place and in a group format,” she said. “It also helped that the studio is only about a mile away from my home.”

While building her career as a young professional in academia in California, Utah and Texas before landing in Mobile “by myself and not knowing a soul” in June of 2016, Candice said she was looking for a place to call home and connect with others who valued fitness and wellness. 

“Although I had met a lot of wonderful people and had positive experiences at other fitness facilities during my time here, nowhere really felt like “home” to me,” she said. “With fitness and wellness being such an essential part of my life, it was crucial for me to find a place that felt like home where I could connect with other like-minded individuals.”

Candice credited the community at Sterling Hot Yoga & Wellness as the reason she keeps coming back to practice. 

“I feel like Sterling does a great job of fostering a sense of community and belonging for their members, and everyone I’ve met at the studio has been so kind, down-to-earth and welcoming,” she said. “The accountability is great, too—you know your yoga friends expect to see you, so you show up to class!”

Thanks to her regular practice at Sterling, Candice said she’s become a stronger runner.

“Hot yoga and Pilates have been game-changers for my running: a stronger core, improved flexibility and breathing technique, and better muscle recovery are just a few of the benefits I have noticed after practicing yoga,” she said. “It has allowed me to more quickly acclimate to the heat. Outside of my running, I’ve noticed improved mental focus and mindfulness.”

Practicing yoga and Pilates also helps Candice manage her very busy schedule. 

“As a long-distance runner and indoor cycling instructor, I am always moving, often at a very fast pace. Marathon training and teaching group fitness classes, along with my full-time job in academia, had me wanting to slow things down a bit,” she said. “I knew that yoga could be a great way for me to not only slow things down, find balance and better manage life’s daily stresses, but that it could also improve my running—I now say, “do yoga, run stronger!”

That consistency has paid off for Candice, even in ways that surprised her. 

“Consistency really is key to anything in life—whether it be success in fitness, relationships or your career, to breaking bad habits and forming good ones. I had always had a passing interest in yoga, but never practiced consistently until recently,” she said. “I was really surprised at how much of a difference a consistent yoga practice made in such a relatively short period of time, especially in terms of being more mindful of my breathing patterns.

“It’s made a noticeable difference in how I work through my daily runs and has also made me more aware of subtle nuances in my daily life and how I respond to stressful situations.”

What can a consistent yoga practice give you? There’s only one way to find out! Sign up here for our new member special, $30 for 30 days of unlimited practice!

Candice said, “The hardest part is showing up! It’s okay to be nervous, it’s okay to be a little intimidated—acknowledge that trying something new is scary. It was everyone’s first yoga class at some point! 

“Take it one step at a time, and celebrate all the tiny victories and improvements along the way.”

10 Reasons to Keep Up Your Practice This Summer!

By News

Reasons to Practice Hot Yoga in Summer Benefits of Practicing Yoga in Summer Sterling Hot Yoga“But it’s so hot outside!” We get it! Mobile is known for being super hot, super humid and super rainy (usually all three in a very short span of time).

But maintaining a regular practice when it’s just as hot outside is really good for you. Here’s 10 reasons why!

1. Strengthen your heat tolerance. Keep your cool outside of the hot room, literally.

2. Get fit for summer activities. If you spend more time outside running, playing golf, throwing a Frisbee, etc., you’ll have more strength and stamina.

3. Make progress in your practice. If you’re body is already warmed up, thanks to Mother Nature, you won’t need as much time to loosen up in the hot room.

4. It will keep you hydrated! Yes, you need more water (electrolytes too!) in the summer to bounce back.

5. You’ll make healthier eating choices. When you feel good, you’ll take better care of yourself!

6. Be better prepared for your next class. The heat prolongs the flexibility and relaxation you’ve achieved, so you’re body is ready to practice!

7. Keep your body and mind energized. We’re not saying you shouldn’t relax, but yoga can help you kick that sluggish summer feeling.

8. Spend more time with your yoga family. Being around a positive community like ours is good for your soul.

9. Get over the fear of the “fall return.” If you’ve maintained your practice, you’re already there!

10. Yoga is never a bad idea. If you’re tired, stressed, anxious, busy, show up anyway.

Ready to come back? We’ve got specials just for you!

 

Taka Kibby Seeks Flexibility, But Finds More With Hot Yoga

By Testimonial

Hot Yoga Benefits Customer Satisfaction Client Testimonial

When she first discovered hot yoga at SHYW after someone recommended it to her six years ago, she didn’t like it at first. “It was hot and steamy and smelly,” she said.

But after practicing at SHYW regularly since then, Taka described the practice as “addictive.”

“My body appreciates it,” she said.

Initially, her goal when she started her yoga practice was to gain and retain flexibility. But Taka said she’s experienced even more benefits than that.

“I don’t get sick like catching a cold,” she said, “I’m more focused, and I know how to find a peace within myself.”

Now Taka would say it’s what she wasn’t looking for that keeps her coming back to her mat. Among those reasons, she listed “to meditate, to keep me in shape, to detox and to get total body therapy.”

Everyone who’s tried—and loved—hot yoga has often not always felt that way about it. But the difference is they tried and kept trying.

That’s Taka’s advice to new students interested in trying hot yoga for the first time. “Give yourself an opportunity to try to find yourself and peace within,” she said, “and you will find strength, flexibility and relaxation.”

Just because you try doesn’t always mean it’s easy. Even for Taka, who practices consistently, some days can be a struggle, but pushing through that is what makes yoga worth it.

“Every practice is different—some days are more of a struggle than others,” she said. “It is up to you to make it happen, for better or worse. But those days that you make it for a class are better than the days you missed.”

Taka encouraged first-timers to try hot yoga at SHYW because the staff will make it easy. “All the staff at Sterling is very friendly, open-minded and helpful,” she said. “They will make you feel welcome.”

Interested in trying hot yoga? Sign up here for our $30 introductory special and take unlimited classes in your first 30 days. The best deal in town!

Scott Singleterry Finds One Challenge Leads to Another

By Testimonial

Scott Singleterry Testimonial Hot Yoga Benefits Sterling Hot Yoga Mobile AL

In his early 20s, Scott Singleterry immersed himself in running. Pushing himself through training and running long distances, sprints and hills became routine.

“As I was starting this journey, I became interested in breathing techniques that would help to excel my practice,” he said. “This led to reading and researching that would eventually transfer my regular practice from running to yoga,”

Seven years ago, Scott’s yoga practice began with a book on asana. He specifically searched for ways to open his hip flexors and take pressure off his knees.

That was before his father introduced him to Bikram Hot Yoga Mobile, now Sterling Hot Yoga & Wellness. “Before I ever thought about having a regular yoga practice, my father introduced me to the founder of Sterling Hot Yoga, Lucille Allen Moran,” Scott said.

Thanks to her dynamic personality and inspirational influence, “Sterling was an easy choice,” he said.

In the six years since that he has been practicing at Sterling Hot Yoga & Wellness, Scott has not only immersed himself in the original hot yoga practice, but also he completed Sterling Hot Yoga Works Teacher Training in Summer 2015.

“Sterling has been a solid foundation that has allowed me to grow in ways that I certainly didn’t expect, but in ways that make me grateful for each new moment of expansion,” he said, reflecting on his journey.

“This has become much more than a fitness routine for me,” Scott said. “It opens my mind and spirit. I remember thinking early on after one of the 90-minute classes that it didn’t matter what else happened out in the world that day, I had just conquered my own world in the hot room.”

Scott said he is reminded that he can’t control everything that happens, but that he simply has to take one day at a time and “just breathe, everything else is optional.”

It didn’t take long for Scott to fall in love with the traditional 90-minute original hot yoga sequence of 26 postures and two breathing exercises—the only style of yoga offered when he first started practicing at the studio.

“I had done the long runs, I had done the weight lifting, and though I experienced benefits from these styles of fitness, it’s hard to describe the feeling I had as I laid in savasana after kapalbhati (the final breathing exercise),” he said. “I felt exhausted, rejuvenated, invigorated, all at the same time. It was a link to discovery of something that shall continue to help me grow for many decades to come.”

One of the most surprising lessons Scott has taken away from yoga, among the “too many to count,” is the power of control over distractions and the acceptance of change.

“Life is strange sometimes, hard sometimes, confusing sometimes. Yoga is a break from these distractions of me getting in my own way. It allows me to stop, take inventory of where I’m at that day, pause, and just breathe,” he said. “I have learned that change is the only constant, and as long as I am open to my awareness of myself in the moment, I can make these changes more intentionally to propel me in the direction of where I desire that I am.”

Scott encouraged others who are thinking about beginning a yoga practice at Sterling Hot Yoga & Wellness to just do it! “You are stronger than you know physically, emotionally, mentally and spiritually,” he said. “Awaken yourself to your full potential. You can!’

Experience the power of mind-body connection through yoga like Scott has with our new member introductory special. It’s just $30 for 30 days of unlimited practice. Sign up here!

 

Sterling Hot Yoga Likely Helped Save Reggie Wilson’s Life

By Testimonial

Hot Yoga Benefits Yoga for Knee Injury Yoga for Cardiovascular HealthWhen Reggie Wilson started practicing at Sterling Hot Yoga in August 2014, he was carrying old aches and pains from lingering injuries from his service in the 82nd Airborne Division.

But the 22 classes he took during his introductory month and the three times a week practice he maintained after that could have well saved his life, according to Reggie, his wife and his doctor.

On Feb. 1, 2015, Super Bowl Sunday, Reggie went to the hospital after feeling tightness in his chest. Several tests helped doctors determine he had a 100 percent blockage in one of his arteries, and he underwent triple bypass surgery.

After surgery, the doctor asked what he had been doing. Reggie told him, “Sterling Hot Yoga.” The doctor said there’s a good chance yoga saved his life because his heart developed alternate routes around the blockage. Plus the strength of his systems helped him through the surgery with relative ease!

He returned to Sterling Hot Yoga during his recovery with modifications in his practice, then after knee surgery and knee replacement surgery less than two years apart, he made the decision to come back.

“After having two knee surgeries, my health was starting to decline,” he said. “I noticed that I did not have too many health issues when I was practicing yoga consistently.”

Over the past five years of Reggie’s practice off and on at Sterling, he’s experienced changes in body composition and sleep patterns and found more inner peace and relaxation, and that’s what keeps him committed to showing up on his mat.

“Yoga is truly a connection between the mind and the body,” he said. “The health benefits associated with yoga is the main reason that keeps me coming back.”

With a consistent practice, Reggie said he was even amazed at what he experienced and most importantly by what he learned about himself. “One of the most surprising things I have learned about myself is that I am capable of doing 20 times more than what I think I can do,” he said.

Yoga was—and is still—hard work, and Reggie realized that as soon as his first class. He said he thought, “This is going to take English bulldog determination, Bengal tiger strength and the tenacity to see it through.”

Now, it’s easy for Reggie to realize the benefits of yoga, and that’s what he stresses to anyone thinking about trying hot yoga for the first time.

“Yoga is the best investment you can make for your health and fitness,” he said. “By practicing yoga consistently, the return on this investment is priceless.”

Everyone at Sterling Hot Yoga is happy to see Reggie back in the hot room! He still has to take modifications in postures due to his knee surgeries, but most importantly that regular practice helps him feel better and stronger!

For that Reggie is thankful for David and “his staff of trained professionals” for welcoming him back to the studio.

We’d love to welcome you too so you can experience the benefits of yoga for yourself! Sign up here for our $30 introductory special, and you can try all of our classes UNLIMITED for 30 days!

Anne Adams Faced Breast Cancer With the Help of Hot Yoga

By Testimonial

Hot Yoga Benefits Sterling Hot Yoga Mobile Yoga for Cancer Patients Hot Yoga BenefitsNaturally flexible after a childhood and adolescence dedicated to ballet, Anne Adams was drawn to yoga.

More than 20-plus years of vinyasa, power yoga, gentle flows, and prenatal, laughter and breath yoga helped her maintain her flexibility—just as yoga had done for her mother. “My mother does yoga,” Anne said, “and is very flexible at 70.”

Flexibility is one of the top reasons many seek out yoga, along with balance, strength, weight loss and stress reduction.

But more than the flexibility, yoga helped provide Anne the strength and calm to navigate one of the toughest challenges of her life: cancer.

“Yoga helped me prepare for and recover from a bilateral mastectomy,” she said. “I was very diligent in my attendance prior to surgery and recovery to help with my anxiety and to boost the health of my body as much as possible, and it worked.”

She credits her consistent practice for helping her feel strong despite the surgery that left drains in her torso for six weeks.

“My strength from yoga (and Iron Hour and Pilates) helped me to be able to do very basic things that, had I not been so fit, would have made recovery tougher,” she said. “I was able to recover quickly and feel strong again very quickly.”

Physical strength wasn’t all Anne got from yoga. It gave her peace in times of stress, worry or pain.

“I used my yoga breathing to calm myself during doctor’s appointments,” Anne said, “and to quell the anxiety of having cancer with a young child or to deal with pain.”

Still, yoga provided more. Through yoga, Anne also found a compassionate yoga community that enveloped her in love and support before surgery, during recovery and after she returned to her practice.

“The yogis at the studio supported me throughout my breast cancer journey. When I worked so hard in classes working through my anxiety and cried at the end of class in full exhaustion, they let me do it, were comforting to me and let me get it out,” Anne said.

“They set intentions for their classes to send me good vibes while I was out recovering. They sent me pictures of classes in which I was a regular,” she continued. “They were encouraging when I returned and couldn’t quite do everything I was used to being able to do.”

Breast cancer is the most common cancer among women, according to the American Cancer Society, and there is a 1 in 8 chance that a woman will develop the disease. Not surprisingly, others in Anne’s support group knew what she was facing.

“Unfortunately, some of them had also had cancer, and they had important advice they shared,” she said. “They gave me a lot of fight, courage and strength, while also giving me genuine empathy because they actually understood.”

Anne has since resumed her practice with a passion, but it was getting back to her routine and getting back to her yoga community that fueled her.

“I had never had such a fire to get back to something,” she said. “I believed that the richly oxygenated blood would heal my surgical wounds faster and more thoroughly, and I wanted to prove to myself that I would fight for my health and that I could still be strong after a cancer diagnosis.”

Anne has been a part of the Sterling Hot Yoga Mobile community for more than three years, thanks to repeated invites from her friend Shellene McLean. A back injury forced an exercise hiatus, but when she resumed, she accepted her friend’s invitation and decided to try hot yoga “because it was a way to see her,” Anne said.

“I came back because y’all say to come back within 24 hours. I kept coming back because of the feeling afterwards,” she said. “It was very different from anything else I had done. It’s very hard, but it leaves me with a great feeling.”

That feeling differs from student to student, and sometimes it’s hard to describe. It can refer to the physical, mental, emotional or energetic self. But at the heart of it all is an acceptance of and peace with the present moment.

“Yoga teaches me humility, consistency and patience. And I’m constantly having to learn them again and again,” Anne said. “It teaches me that every class isn’t going to be the same, my balance isn’t going to be the same, nor is my flexibility. Consistency helps, but I have to continuously learn to be patient with the limits of my body.”

Like it did for Anne, yoga holds a wealth of benefits, but you’ll never know what those may be for you until you show up on your mat. “I would encourage others to try yoga to complement their other forms of exercise,” she said, “because in turn they will find so much more.”

Are you ready to find more of what you want in your life? Try our introductory special, $30 for 30 days of unlimited practice. We would love to see you on your mat!

Danny Miller Experiences Benefits, Community Through Hot Yoga

By Testimonial

DannyMiller SHYW Testimonial hot yoga benefitsThe thought of practicing yoga in a room heated to 105 degrees and regulated at 40 percent humidity can be an intimidating one for many people. But for Danny Miller, that was part of the intrigue.

“I was curious about ‘hot’ yoga, and I was looking for a challenge and a good sweat,” he said.

Now, six-and-a-half years later, Danny can safely say that hot yoga has become a way of life.

His journey into yoga began simply enough—he was looking for an exercise that was less stressful on his bones and joints. And in the hot room, he found it.

The sequence of 26 postures and two breathing exercises practiced in original hot yoga is meant to be as restorative as it is strengthening.

The precise order of the postures in the heat offers multiple benefits, such as restoring range of motion to joints, healing chronic pain and relieving stress.

From a consistent practice, Danny has experienced improved flexibility, increased stamina, a stronger immune system, less inflammation and a better mental state. But that’s not the only thing that keeps him coming back to the hot room.

“The continued improvement in my flexibility and strength, and overall health,” he said. “And the new friends I’ve made along the way.”

Though he describes yoga as a “huge part” of his lifestyle, he said he still sees progress in his mental and physical toughness each year, and that’s been a pleasant, but surprising realization.

Danny remembers that the first class can be scary and intimidating, and, yes, it is really hot! But making the commitment to try can be the hardest, though most important part.

Beyond that, he did have some words of advice for the first-time student: “Just go in with no expectations,” he said,” and listen to your body.”

In Danny’s nearly seven years with Sterling Hot Yoga Mobile, he’s seen growth and transformation—from name changes to class offerings to ownership. But one fundamental thing has stayed the same.

“There’s an energetic atmosphere that everyone feeds off of,” he said, “allowing one to push further and to take their practice to the next level.”

Do you want to be a part of what Danny is talking about? Try our introductory special, just $30 for 30 days of unlimited practice, and you can experience what our yoga community has to offer!

Studies Note Yoga Benefits for Cancer Patients

By News

yoga benefits for cancer patients breast cancer awareness hot yogaThe world turns pink around this time of year, signaling renewed focus on breast health and breast cancer awareness.

Pink ribbons, pink hair, even pink football gear worn during NFL games serve as a subtle reminder that annual preventive care screenings, early detection and treatment are the best defense against breast cancer.

But many in the yoga community would add something else to that wellness regimen: their yoga practice.

Whether they’ve been diagnosed with breast cancer or were undergoing treatment, so many women at studios across the country credit their hot yoga practice for helping them manage their anxiety, regain their physical strength, and heal their bodies and their spirit.

Sterling Hot Yoga Mobile owner Lucille Moran was just recently diagnosed with breast cancer and already she can feel the positive benefits of her yoga practice.

“In sorting out a plan for health, I have learned that breast cancer has very high rate of cure,” she wrote in a client newsletter. “Every year there are more breakthroughs in therapies, and women and men are gaining more options.

“I’m lucky because the tumor was caught early, is isolated in one location and is very slow growing,” she continued. “I am convinced that our yoga has kept my body as healthy as it could be.”

Some physicians are even starting to recognize yoga’s therapeutic benefits for cancer patients.

In 2008, Dr. Timothy McCall, a physician specializing in internal medicine and the medical editor for Yoga Journal magazine, detailed some of these yoga benefits for cancer patients in the medical journal Oncology.

Among them, reduced anxiety, longer and more restful sleep, better mood and lower levels of fatigue.

McCall praised yoga as being part of a cancer treatment regimen for its adaptability based on a student’s diagnosis and overall level of health.

Because so many forms of yoga existfrom gentle to more vigorous sequencesthere is something accessible to nearly everyone.

In light of Breast Cancer Awareness Month and the close-to-home reminder that yoga can have a profound impact on one’s health, Sterling Hot Yoga Mobile invites you to begin your practice today.

Now is a great time to invite friends who’ve never tried yoga or encourage someone to come back to the hot room!

Saturday, Sept. 19 kicks off Mobile/Baldwin Yoga Week as part of National Yoga Month. From Sept. 19 – 26, anyone can donate five pieces of canned or dry food (Thanksgiving type) in exchange for a free class at SHY Mobile and other participating studios in the area.

All donations will go to the Bay Area Food Bank to help families in the central Gulf Coast enjoy a healthy and fruitful Thanksgiving holiday.

If you’d like to donate and give the gift of a free class, bring in some canned food yourself and get a free class card to hand out to interested yogis in the future.

And remind them that it’s good for their health!

Jana Gets Over the Hump in Camel After a Year

By News
jana rocker camel milestone hot yoga inspiration

Jana Rocker reaches her ankle in Camel after one year of practicing at Sterling Hot Yoga Works Mobile.

Most new students who practice at Sterling Hot Yoga Mobile are intimidated by the level of heat in the hot room.

Jana Rocker was, too, when she signed up for her first class a little more than a year ago.

“I am terrible with heat,” she said. “But the yoga helped me a lot. I can actually go outside in the heat and it does not bother me.”

Taking that first step to try hot yoga wasn’t an easy one. Cancer took its toll on Jana’s life at a young age.

She lost her arm as a result and watched helplessly as friends suffered and died from the disease.

That experience fueled her calling to pursue cancer research, but she dropped out of graduate school in 1995 when a professor told her she couldn’t do science with one arm.

For 10 years, Jana battled PTSD, depression and anxiety until she realized she was “just settling for the status quo and not growing at all as a person or working in my passion.”

“PTSD was still a problem working in a cancer center for a few years,” she said. “I still have my moments, but one thing I swear by is yoga. The ability to control my anxious responses to the hot room has carried off the mat into my life in amazing ways!”

She ranks her decision to try hot yoga as “one of the life-changing scary moments of life.” Though the yoga studio website assures that hot yoga is for everyone, she still wasn’t sure how it would be for her having one arm.

Jana does her best in each and every class and she follows modifications on various postures to get the benefits from them.

With master’s and Ph.D. in hand, Jana now works for the University of South Alabama’s Mitchell Cancer Institute “to help others not have to go through what I went through,” she said.

Between her demanding schedule of research and publishing, plus a move, Jana came up just a little short of her 15-class goal during the 30-Day Challenge. But she saw its merit as a learning opportunity.

“One thing I have learned from fitness challenges is I have a hard time completing them,” she said. “Life manages to derail my plans, but I just have to go with it.”

Jana did manage to reach a pretty exciting milestone nonetheless. She was able to reach back and grab her heel in Camel.

“When I first started a year ago, I couldn’t even lean back at all,” she said. “I had zero core and back strength. With one arm, it’s all core and back for me!”

Hot yoga’s impact on Jana’s life doesn’t end there. In the year she’s been doing yoga, she’s lost 30 pounds, experienced fewer gout attacks and gained mobility in her fused ankle.

“My right ankle is fused,” she said. “I could move it up and down, but I couldn’t rotate it. I kept trying in reverse Savasana, and now I can actually rotate the ankle.”

Jana is such an inspiration to everyone who practices at Sterling Hot Yoga Mobile. She is proof that Sterling Hot Yoga Works works!

If you’d like to see what benefits your hot yoga journey holds for you, get started today with our 30-day introductory special!