'From a cripple to fantastic athlete’ all because of yoga, freediving

'From a cripple to fantastic athlete’ all because of yoga, freediving

Outdoors

'From a cripple to fantastic athlete’ all because of yoga, freediving

After suffering with psoriatic arthritis for five years and being told strong medication was his only source for relief, Stig Pryds of Denmark turned to yoga and freediving to cope with his crippling ailment and nightmarish life.

Pryds started meditating and changed his diet, and after a few weeks he was completely free of medication and walking without a cane for the first time in years. He was also on his way to becoming a professional freediver.

Pryds discovered freediving by coincidence while taking swim classes for his condition and being introduced to breathing exercises.

“As it turned out, I had a completely undiscovered potential and gift—a potential and gift that I probably would have never realized had it not been for that awful psoriatic arthritis,” he wrote on his website.

In the video above, Pryds combines yoga with freediving as he successfully attempted to sink to the bottom of a 108-plus-foot pool in the lotus pose.

“This dive took 2 minutes, but it took years to master the skills required,” the video related. “Not bad for a man who is supposed to be in a wheelchair.”

Stig Pryds attempts to sink to bottom of a 108-foot pool in lotus pose. Photo is a screen grab.

Pryds, who dove as deep as 70 meters (229-plus feet) on one breath and set a Danish freediving record, now teaches others with chronic illnesses about how he manages his, having transformed himself “from a cripple into a fantastic athlete.”

“Now I live a life without medication and the nightmare is over. Psoriatic arthritis cannot be cured,” Pryds wrote. “However, today I can live with it because I have won my life back without being dependent on drugs. Once again, I am the partner and father that my family and I deserve. I am no longer a passive spectator to my own wretched life. I am proactive, committed, and last but not least, happy.”

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