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DEAR LITHE {LOVE LETTERS}. 2 Jul 2013

DEAR LITHE (LOVE LETTERS)

Dear Lithe,

You brought me back to a body I thought I would never have again.

I grew up as a dancer. A serious, lived-in-a-leotard, took-classes-every-day, danced-til-it-hurt kind of dancer. It was the biggest part of me that anything could be.  Nothing felt as good as the way I could move when I danced. I didn’t have dreams of doing it professionally because I didn’t want it to be my career. I just loved to dance and push the limits of how my body could move.

But right after college the back pain appeared seemingly out of nowhere and flared up fast and fierce. I had some serious disc problems. By the time I was 25 I was completely inactive, in daily pain and losing the ability to move my body in a normal functioning way. Fortunately I found Pilates soon after and over the next few years it helped reduce some pain and regain most of my day-to-day movement again.

But some pain continued to linger and the experience took a huge toll on me physically and mentally. The body I was left with was foreign to me. A body that was once able to leap, spin and dance was now weak, heavy, hurting and afraid to move. And according to my doctors it would only get worse over time.

I tried to push through it with a little success here and there. A little running, Pilates and yoga all helped but not enough. As hard as I tried, I couldn’t find my way back to a body that was happy and I thought I never would.

Then I moved to Philly and found Lithe. I was wary at first but something about it intrigued me and I gave it a go. After a month of learning crazy moves and managing trembling muscles I was hooked. And after a few more months of regular classes, I actually started to recognize my body again. Lithe was giving me my body back!

But in saying that, I’m not referring to my size or muscle tone (although those have never been better thanks to Lithe). My body was never perfect looking. But it was a body that was strong, ambitious, brave and could move…and that’s what Lithe gave me back and that is why I love Lithe. Both the choreography and the strength Lithe gave me allowed me to move in ways I haven’t experienced since my dancing days. And it changed me not just physically but mentally. It gave me a piece of me back.

So now, yes I am a Lithe junkie. I love my classes and am probably even a little intense about my workouts. But what’s funny is that the intensity comes from gratitude. I just can’t believe what my body can do again! I’m so insanely happy and grateful about it that it pushes me to give my absolute all. Every time I Plyo or Rockette kick I think “woo-hoo I have a body that can do this!” So thank you Lithe! Thank you Lauren and thank you incredible instructors for allowing me to push my body to the limits again. It feels so (painfully) good!

Dana A.

Comments

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Dana I loved reading this and it now gives me hope, so thank you for that. I was the same kind of dancer as you and also taught. Currently I'm in that hopeless funk feeling of feeling out of shape and dealing with the pain of old dance injuries flaring back up. I'm slowly coming out of it thanks to Lithe and hope it just keeps strengthening like it did for you!

Love this Dana! I too am grateful everyday to have found Lithe!! Lithe's deep core muscle strengthening lifts the vertebrae right off of those smushed discs. Nine years of chronic back pain... GONE! Stick with it Kristy... slow and steady... it will help!


As a former gymnast who worked out and flew through the air 5-6x's a week from age 3 to 16, I can relate to the physical pain you felt later on when dancing was done. I had a physical therapist tell me about 7 years ago that it was necessary for me to find a way to stay active and flexible since my body went through such extreme training during my body's developmental years and that's the natural state of my muscles. I love that I found Lithe and can tell when I take time off.. I start to get pain in my hips again. I am forever grateful for this amazing workout method!

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