An Internet weight-loss sensation that involves a new, high-intensity form of yoga has led a once-obese man to drop a 100 pounds.
Arthur Boorman, 47, has managed to lose the weight using DDP, or Diamond Dallas Page, which is a pumped-up form of yoga that forgoes all of the gongs and serenity typically associated with the Hindu physical and spiritual discipline.
"It's a different kind of yoga. We make a joke: 'It ain't your momma's yoga,'" Boorman said.
DDP was invented by Diamond Dallas Page, an extreme former wrestler who thought yoga could use a new intensity. We all know yoga can build strength and flexibility, but it can also be the key to significant weight loss by creating a slow, deep resistance to each movement, getting the body working against itself. Page's program capitalizes on this.
These days it's hard to imagine that not many years ago, Boorman was a Gulf War veteran with some serious back issues. At that time he plunged into some dark days, becoming so obese that at one point, he couldn't walk without leg braces.
Boorman thought yoga could help his back pain, but no studios wanted to work with him because he couldn't stand on his own.
"I was up late, on a search engine just typing different things, and I typed in yoga and broken back, and up popped Dallas' page," he recalls.
Boorman soon got the Page's DVDs, and slowly and surprisingly he saw himself shrinking, tightening and strengthening.
After his weight loss, Boorman has now moved from DDP student to teacher. But he must warn his pupils that there is nothing soothing or meditative about his class.
"It's like the Marines, yoga for the Marines," Claire, one of Boorman's students, said.
Stacey Morris had the same shock as Boorman when she lost significant weight through DDP. At her peak two years ago, she weighed more than 300 pounds; now she has gone from size 28 to a size 8.
"I actually look better at 47 than I did at 21," she said.
Morris, who is also 47, and Boorman say that the high-intensity yoga first gave them a new feeling of energy and control.
"It's very cardio. It works the muscles and my body started to rehabilitate and heal and my posture changed," Morris said.
It also encouraged both of them to change the way they eat, including more vegetables and less processed food. Key to keeping the weight off, they say, is that they lost it gradually. It took more than a year of sustained work for each of them.
"The big part of it was getting your head right ... once my mind was in the right place, it was just a matter of getting the work done," Boorman said.
Now Boorman is getting his work done, and also helping others. For a man who literally couldn't walk, and who can now sprint, he provides plenty of inspiration.