By Dustin Pollack
Former WWE superstar Trish Status admits that one of the biggest challenges since opening up the Stratusphere Yoga studio in 2010 has been attracting men to the spiritual exercise discipline.
That's one of the reasons why Stratus, a 36-year-old Toronto native, has teamed with Toronto Blue Jays legend and two-time World Series champion Joe Carter to create Stratusphere Yoga for Men, a 25-minute yoga workout video being released Thursday in which Stratus and Carter put viewers through a routine of yoga exercises.
"I've known Joe for a number of years through the annual Joe Carter Classic [golf tournament]," Stratus said in a phone interview Thursday. "I know it sounds funny, but us retired athletes talk about the aches and pains... And so one year, before we got started [at the tournament] I said, 'I'm going to show you and Charles Barkley some yoga poses you can do' and that's when we really started talking.
"This year's tournament was coming up and and he asked me to put together a routine [for him] and from there we said 'lets go ahead and film this.' "
So Stratus got together with Carter and Alana Hurov, a television producer and founder of Hotel Yoga and in one six hour day at the Hazelton hotel in downtown Toronto they were able to film the video.
"It's really neat because it's one thing to target men, but [it's something else] when [men] see someone like Joe Carter, who's obviously so respected, he's an athlete that people just know," Stratus said. "People have been really impressed with Joe because he stepped outside his box, he tried something new, put himself in somewhat of a vulnerable position."
Stratus was first introduced to yoga training in 2004. She was still with the WWE at the time and struggling to return from a herniated-disc injury. Physiotherapy had proved unsuccessful, but rather than going ahead with surgery she wanted to see what else she could do on her own to try and speed up the process of rehabilitating her back. She was referred to hot yoga by in-ring rival Amy "Lita" Dumas and so Stratus decided to give it a chance.
She says the effects on her body were instant and after participating in hot yoga almost every day for more than two months she completely reversed the damage of her injury and was able to return to wrestling.
More than seven years later she's retired from professional wrestling and is hoping she can continue to pass on not only the positive outcome yoga can provide on your health, but on your life as well.
"I know for me as soon as I started integrating yoga into my life I can honestly say that everything got better," she said. "From the little things [like] the way I handle traffic to the way my body is feeling.
"Everybody can use a little yoga in their life."
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