Why does yoga get pigeonholed as the exclusive domain of the feminine, bendy-as-a-Twizzler set? If that’s you, namaste. But if it isn’t, you should know that yoga is a party everyone is invited to—including the bros and the not-so-bendy. That’s why we love anything that breaks free from the stereotypes, whether it’s Yoga Joes, #curvyyoga Instagrammers, or DDP.
What’s that last one? Dubbed “Beefcake Yoga” by the New York Times, DDP Yoga was started by former pro-wrestler Diamond Dallas Page. After sustaining a brutal spinal injury, Page’s body was wrecked. But little by little, he used yoga to heal himself, and in three years, he was back in the ring. The transformation was so astonishing that Page devoted himself to teaching his own brand of yoga: a studly version where Sanskrit names are replaced with handles like “Thunderbolt” and “Touchdown.”
If you’ve dismissed yoga before as a bunch of stretching and chanting, DDP shows just how athletic it can be—and makes it ridiculously fun. Just try not to laugh too hard as you end a Vinyasa-style flow by flexing your biceps to “Hulk It Up.”
1. Table Into Cat Stretch/Cat Arch
Start on hands and knees in a tabletop position, back flat with hands under shoulders and knees under hips. Warm up the spine by curving your back down into cat stretch and curving it sharply up into cat arch. Repeat 3 times.
2. Broken Table
In tabletop position, lift right arm and left leg straight out, parallel to the ground. Hold for 5 breaths, engaging core. Repeat, lifting left arm and right leg. Do each side 3 times.
3. Road Warriors One and Two
Transition from tabletop into a lunge position with right foot in front, spinning left heel down and angling left foot out slightly to come into road warrior one (a.k.a. warrior pose). Lift arms overhead, keeping the muscles engaged like you’re squeezing an invisible beach ball between your hands. Keep torso and hips facing front foot, and stay here for 5 breaths. Open hands and bring arms parallel to the ground, rotating torso and hips to the left. Keep right knee at a 90-degree angle and continue to reach your arms long with muscles engaged. This is road warrior two. Stay here for another 5 breaths.
Transition back to road warrior one with torso and hips facing right foot. Now is when you enter the ring: With all your force, punch right hand forward while left hand is retracted by your torso. Then switch hands. (Picture punching through a brick wall.) Repeat 10 times with each hand.
5. Supported Lunge Into Space Shuttle
Circle left heel up, staying in a high lunge with hands on right thigh. From there, lean chest forward onto thigh and put hands straight behind back. Here, in space shuttle position, begin your countdown: “Ten, nine, eight, seven... ” Once you hit one, launch right foot off the ground and use the strength in your left leg to come to standing. Blast off! Repeat road warrior, punches, and supported lunge/space shuttle with left foot in front (as shown here).
6. Ignition Into Touchdown
After blasting off from the second space shuttle, come to standing with feet hip-width apart and leg muscles engaged. With hands out in front of you, grab that imaginary beach ball and swing it up overhead. (Feel free to shout, “Touchdown!” in the process.) Then swing arms back down to sides.
7. Diamond Cutter Into Hulk It Up
From touchdown, bring hands in front of you, pointer fingers and thumbs touching to make a diamond. Swing arms overhead, slightly arching upper back to come into diamond cutter. Then bring arms back around and flex them in front to hulk it up. (Try not to rip your shirt while flexing those guns.)