According to recent studies, over 100 million Americans suffer from chronic pain of some sort. It can come in bursts, or linger on a daily basis, but it never goes away.
85-year-old Anna Pesce from Orangeburg, New York, was among those millions of people living with chronic pain. Severe scoliosis had left her spine crooked and hunched over. Her posture got so bad that she was eventually wheelchair-bound. Doctors said she'd be that way the rest of her life.
But Anna had other ideas. She decided to make a serious life change that completely transformed her.
Anna had a herniated disc, osteoporosis, and scoliosis. She was unable to visit her grandchildren, and couldn't perform basic tasks by herself. She couldn't even go up and down the stairs - she had to be carried. Obviously, her independence suffered a lot as a result.
Still, Anna never gave up hope. She kept visiting chiropractors, acupuncturists, and various specialists to find relief, but nothing worked.
Finally, she met with scoliosis expert Rachel Jesien, who introduced her to the thing that changed her life: yoga!
Yoga is absolutely incredible, and can help improve flexibility, decrease stress and depression, improve blood flow, balance, and posture. There are poses to reportedly cure any ailment.
Rachel had a lot of experience working with people with chronic pain, and specializes in back issues. She actually knows a lot about how much yoga can do for back pain - she got into this line of work after her own chronic pain was fixed with yoga!
When Anna first met with Rachel, she was almost completely immobilized. She worked hard with Rachel to gain back her mobility little by little. It was painful at first, but she persevered. Eventually, she got pretty good at it!
It took just a month for her to go from being hunched over and in constant pain to be standing upright and feeling barely any pain at all. Four months in and she was doing modified headstands with her back to the wall and her feet parallel to her head in an inverted V-shape!
Anna's life was completely transformed by yoga. If you've got chronic pain, you may want to look into therapeutic yoga as well. Learn more here, and see more of Anna's story below.