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U.S. Marine Vet: Yoga ‘Saved My Life In So Many Ways’

in YD News


“The military is very good at training you for combat, but what happens when it’s over?”

C.J. Keller is a U.S. Marine Corps. veteran still trying to recover from symptoms of post-traumatic stress disorder 10 years after his deployment to Iraq. Despite taking anti-anxiety medication, nothing seemed to help enough to bring him peace from anxiety, flashbacks, and lack of sleep. Not the gym. And alcohol only made things worse. But since discovering yoga, he says his life changed for the better.

“If his stress was an 8.5 on a scale of 10, yoga turned it down to 4.5,” reports NJ.com.

And now he’s teaching yoga and meditation to active military members, veterans and their families, and sharing his story of recovery in the hopes that others will be able to find relief as well.

There are still skeptics. But Keller asks, “What have you got to lose?”

“Yoga empowers you with the organic tools to take your healing and your recovery into your own hands as opposed to pills and the bottle,” says Keller. “It saves lives; it saved my life in so many ways. I was going down that path that I was going to be a statistic and I was gonna be one of the 22.”

The 22, sadly referring to the number of veterans committing suicide every day, according to the Department of Veterans Affairs.

C.J. Keller joins a growing group of veterans who have found relief from PTSD by practicing yoga and are passing it on by teaching others.




9 comments… add one
  • paul

    the nervous system shapes awareness in the most physical body but proper breathing can calm what seems much further on; hopefully soon these newspaper reporters and instructors will begin to make the connections “out loud” ..

  • Yoga is about breathing through stressful physical situations so its definitely provides a host of benefits for those who are suffering from stress, depression or other chemical and psychological maladies. It balances the hormones in the body, detoxifies glands and tissues and stretches the muscles so that the body is less prone to injury.

  • What an inspiration! I am also a Vet and I suffer from anxiety, depression, and ptsd. I can honestly say that Yoga is helping me find inner peace. It is truly changing my life and my way of thinking. Before practicing Yoga I was a very negative person, now I am changing my perspective on things no matter how bad they may seem. Namaste my friends!

  • Sam

    That’s really excellent to heat C.J is now teaching yoga techniques to both active and past military members. If the military start to see the benefits that yoga can bring for thier soldiers onn this level they in time they may consider to adopt it. Similar to acupuncture, the US military now has embraced it and uses what is called rather dramatically, ‘battlefield acupuncture’. Basically, it uses specific acupuncture points located in the ears to help with anxiety, depression and post traumatic stress disorder.

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