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Yoga helps U.S. Army Veteran heal from the wounds of war

Posted: 5:58 AM, Mar 10, 2020
Updated: 2020-03-10 07:58:54-04
Yoga helps U.S. Army Veteran heal from the wounds of war

MERIDIAN, Idaho — Dan Nevins life changed forever when he was deployed to Iraq in 2004, an IED blast killed his platoon sergeant Mike Attolini and Dan would eventually lose both of his legs.

Dan never understood how so many veterans die by suicide, but that changed as he began to spiral out of control ten years after the incident.

“Had I gone to a doctor would I have gotten diagnosed with PTSD? Yes ten times over," said Nevins. "I finally understood why 22 veterans a day take their own life.”

Dan had the support of the Wounded Warrior Project which helped him for many years, but when he got injured in 2014 he hit rock bottom, he never sought professional help.

“I got so low and spiraling out of control, I couldn’t sleep at night and when I finally did get to sleep I’d wake up with nightmares," said Nevins. "I took a handful of Benadryl and chased it down with whiskey hoping I wouldn’t wake up and that’s when I realized I kind of needed some help.”

A friend of Dan's suggested that he try yoga, which at first Dan thought was the stupidest things he had ever heard, but he gave it a shot and it worked.

“The blind spots started to show themselves so it wasn’t a therapist or a doctor telling me what was wrong and telling me what to do to fix it, I observed what was wrong," said Nevins. "I’m healed from the invisible wounds of war that used to run every second of my life and I owe it to this ancient practice.

Now Dan travels the country as a Baptiste Vinyasa Yoga instructor and he encourages veterans who are having a difficult time to give it a chance.

"I’ve never met a single person who left a yoga class not feeling better than when they walked in the door," said Nevins.

Nevins also travels the country performing motivational speeches, here is a link to his website.

If you or someone you know is struggling with loneliness, anxiety or thoughts of suicide, please call the National Suicide Prevention hotline at 1-800-273-8255 or visit their website.