A Fitness Review: DDP Yoga “It Ain’t Your Mama’s Yoga”

Written by Guest Author, Ethan Harzheim

I am a guy who loves football, tattoos and rock-n-roll.  I have played sports my whole life; baseball, basketball, hockey, if it had contact and a ball I was in, so the idea of yoga for this guy had previously been a foreign concept.  Well let me tell you, I have found an activity that has literally helped change my life.  I found DDP Yoga, a yoga routine created by ex-professional wrestler Diamond Dallas Page.  He actually created this program after he had back surgery and was trying to gain mobility to alleviate the back pain that he endured from years of wrestling.

This was the hook for me: BACK PAIN.  I always have been a big guy with a big frame.  I loved lifting weights and playing physical sports, but years of rough activity and a few years sleeping on a sofa after a divorce brought my back to a point where getting out of bed was hard.  I take care of my two kids day in and out, and I want to be mobile and participate in their lives.  I was becoming a spectator, and I knew something had to change.  Much to my surprise, DDP Yoga was the answer I was looking for!

What is nice about the DDP Yoga program is that it does not require weights or a gym; just you and your yoga mat and a couple DVDs.  I only paid sixty dollars for five workouts, so it was not an incredible investment.  Once I got the DVDs I went to work.  This program is not magic.  It combines a wonderful nutrition plan with a workout, which you do every other day for thirty minutes or so. I started doing: Down Dog, Cobra, Warrior 1 and 2, and other traditional yoga moves incorporated with planks, push-ups, knee lifts and other moves that I personally had never associated with yoga. After a thirty minute workout, I was drenched in sweat. I mean the dripping, shirt stuck to your body, the first stop is to the shower after your workout kind of sweat.  I was thinking: “This is yoga? Yoga is kicking my butt!” Now the best thing about this program is that it allows for modification, so anyone can pick up the program and just start doing it at your own pace.  It incorporates a heart monitor, and DDP teaches you how to figure out your fat burning zone to maximize your workout, all while not pushing yourself to the point where you could get hurt.

The program uses your own body weight as resistance, thus engaging every muscle in your body. It is a true full-body work out.  Before I discovered this workout, I would go the gym and it was a “leg day” or “arm day” or “chest day.”  This was total body at all time! Within a week, I noticed my back was starting to loosen.  I was gaining more flexibility as I tried to touch my toes. It was amazing the muscles I was turning on again.  I was excited to get home and work out because I was seeing results.  A huge part of this plan is the nutrition plan; DDP outlines the basic guidelines necessary to fuel your body, and you can say good bye to processed foods, as well as a few other things. After a month, I dropped from a 44 to 40 waist size, my back pain had subsided, I was getting more mobile and people at work were coming up to me left and right asking what I was doing.  It was phenomenal. Yoga was the answer! Of course, it wasn’t just the yoga; it was the yoga, the eating right, and the sticking with it that brought the results.

The battle of the bulge!  A lot of us deal with it. We are on the wagon of fitness and wellness and then when it gets tough, we fall off the wagon.  When people diet and it fails, we think we are stuck in this rut of over being overweight or not being happy with who we are.  I promise you this is not the case.  We all fall.  I have.  I have slipped and gone back to eating garbage and I have missed workouts, but the trick is to always get back up. That is one important thing I took away from Dallas: Get back up!  Remember, we are going for a lifestyle change not a passing fad, so as long as you are continually moving forward during this workout, you are in good shape.  It is not how many times you get knocked down, but how many times you get back up!

DDP Yoga also has an amazing support group of people around the country just like you and me who have wanted to improve their quality of life through fitness and wellness.  One of the best parts of this program is the people that come with it and their inspirational stories.  I encourage you to check out the DDP Yoga website because these people are amazing. They are there to help and support you with love and positive energy.

Enjoy this inspirational video showcasing disabled veteran Arthur Boorman’s amazing determination, and the incredible results he achieved using the DDP Yoga program!

Video credit: http://www.youtube.com/watch?feature=player_embedded&v=suTPns5cy_Q


Ethan Harzheim graduated from American InterContinental University with a BA & MBA in Organizational Psychology and Development. A single father of two boys, he has adapted the mantras “Be grateful,” and “There are no ordinary moments.” After going through a rough divorce in 2005, he was introduced to the world of wellness. Through the practice of Reiki and Yoga and heavily influenced by writers such as Dan Millman and  Deepak Chopra, he is moving forward with life grateful for the gifts that the has been given and looking forward to this incredible journey called life.
Follow Ethan on Twitter: @Tapout1001
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About Denise Scarbro

Denise Scarbro holds a BA in Psychology from North Central College and has been studying the work of various teachers; such as, Debbie Ford, Byron Katie, Deepak Chopra, Wayne Dyer and many more, since 2006. Denise writes entries for her blog, Peel The Onion, as well as for other publications; including, The Huffington Post’s "GPS for the Soul" and "The Whirling Blog," and is currently working on her first book. Denise lives in a suburb of Chicago with her two children and several family pets.
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9 Responses to A Fitness Review: DDP Yoga “It Ain’t Your Mama’s Yoga”

  1. Just started DDPYoga myself … LOVE IT! Thanks for the great review! So many people (like me) who have injuries and suffer pain from traditional cardio and impact exercising could benefit from this program!

  2. Ethan says:

    Carrie it will change your life! Congrats!

  3. Thank you for that review!! I have been doing if for a couple months now, and although my weight loss isn’t super noticeable, I have noticed my flexibility has improved and my chiropractor noticed a big difference in my core strength. I’m so glad you’ve talked about falling off the wagon. I’m hanging off the side of it most of the time!!! It’s nobody’s fault but mine. It is a LIFE CHANGE and bad habits take a long time to break.

  4. Bill H says:

    Been on the program since May 26. It’s so NO impact that I did it all the way up to and including the day of my knee surgery Jun 28. 10…I said 10 days…you read that right…10 days later I was able to safely do the program with mods. AWESOME program.

  5. Diana says:

    If you’re doing DDP Yoga, joining TeamDDPYoga.com is almost a MUST. (You don’t have to, but the support system there is un-freakin’-believable!)

  6. joseph0603 says:

    Richard it is a struggle for a lot of us, but when you stick with it even after you fall it gets easier to get back up and do it again. Like you said it is a life style change so one bad meal doesn’t kill you. Be patient and believe in yourself.Like Dianna said TeammDDP is always there for love and support and they have all had the same struggles.

    @ Bill. That is amazing. 10 days after and you are owning it!

  7. harzheimx3 says:

    Richard we have all been there. Don’t stress about it my man. Like you said it is life style. One bad meal doesn’t kill you so if you fall just pick yourself right back up and start again. Most important thing is to believe in yourself and know that everyday you are one step closer to your goal. Diana is right when she talks about Team DDP they are the best support you can find.

    @ Bill. Ten days! Now that is owning it!

  8. Pingback: A Fitness Review: DDP Yoga “It Ain’t Your Mama’s Yoga” | Fun Fitness From Frank | Scoop.it

  9. Luke says:

    Hi Denise, thanks for this blog post.

    There is no doubt that yoga is one of those rare things that genuinely has the ability to turn around your life if you can just give it a chance. I took me three separate attempts to commit to it over the course of 20 years. But as I got older and my body become less forgiving it finally ended up being the right time for me.

    Whilst, my story isn’t as dramatic as Diamond Dallas’ stories I can certainly vouch for it removing permanent back pain and severe ligament damage which has now enabled me to enjoy quality of life and even begin running again after 4 years of post marathon knee damage.

    My advice is to start of slow, maybe just 20 mins a day, form a habit and then you’ll see your body change and your overall out look on life begin improving – – – significantly.

    Yoga is efficient for stress reduction and developing core strength as it has the potential to reduce stress hormones and strengthen your abdominals. Yoga techniques which involve breathing as well as stretching also aid in relieving muscle tension and reducing cortisol stress hormone production and therefore yoga is also massively beneficial as an aid weight loss tool.

    Many people reading this blog will know all this already but for those that don’t take encouragement from this blog and these posts and give yoga a chance.

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