Diamond Dallas Page has tag-teamed with Jay Leno, endured grueling steel cage matches and won the World Heavyweight Championship thrice. These days, the retired professional wrestler is teaching yoga. Sort of.
“No, it’s not called that,” Page said. “My brand is called DDP Yoga. And it ain’t yo mama’s yoga.”
Page hosted a free outdoor session with 24 participants at Ambler Campus on April 10.
As Bon Jovi’s “Dead or Alive” blasted through Page’s iPod speaker dock, the former champion led students through poses and bends.
“Every time you engage a muscle, your heart has to beat faster to get the blood to the muscle,” Page said.
“DDP Yoga is the only workout that is kick-a– cardio, which will dramatically increase your flexibility and core strength all with minimal joint impact,” Page said. “You’ll feel the results by working out and eating real food, not that processed garbage your generation eats but the stuff that God created.”
Nathan Demenczuk, a junior criminal justice major, was referred to the workout opportunity.
“I go to the gym to lift at this time, but everybody said I should check this out,” Demenczuk said. “I thought I would give it a try. I’m a fan from the [Hulk] Hogan era, so I know who DDP is but he wasn’t one of my favorites.”
Since Page entered the sports entertainment business at the late age of 35, high-profile success seemed highly unlikely in a young man’s game.
However, Page had become a major player for World Championship Wrestling during the wrestling boom of the late ‘90s, ranking No. 4 in Pro Wrestling Illustrated’s Top 500 wrestlers for 1997.
“In those days, I wouldn’t be caught dead doing yoga,” Page admitted. “But I blew my back out and the doctors said nobody comes back from this, especially doing what you’re doing. Well, my ex-wife Kimberly got me into yoga. And you know what? I rehabbed my back by mixing yoga with old school calisthenics. I began owning my life.”
Page returned to the ring with a renewed vigor, capturing numerous titles and headlining sold out shows.
His program has assisted other wrestlers such as Chris Jericho and 2012 WWE Hall of Fame inductee Edge.
Starting this week, Page revealed another superstar would be joining the workout.
“One of my very good buddies, Stone Cold Steve Austin, has agreed to do it for a month while filming ‘Redneck Island,’” Page said. “His Hollywood stunt man swears by DDP Yoga. Steve lifts weights and does cardio for an hour a day, five days a week. I told him you only need to do my workout 20 minutes a day for three days a week and it will replace your cardio. He had to ask others for confirmation, even though the son of a gun lived with me.”
In addition to selling his program, Page has undertaken a 24/7 role as personal trainer at the Accountability Crib in Atlanta.
You may have heard of his patients-wrestling legends Scott Hall and Jake “The Snake” Roberts.
“Those guys have had major problems with alcoholism, pill abuse and drugs,” Page said. “Since [Roberts] moved in around October, he has lost 65 pounds. His life is back and he looks like a completely different man. As for Scott, he recently had hip surgery so we’ve been focusing on light rehab and healthy eating habits.”
With Hall and Roberts’ notorious reputations for falling off the wagon, one must wonder why Page has assumed the guardian angel responsibility of combating their personal demons.
“[Roberts] really helped me when no one knew who I was,” Page said. “He taught me how to make people care about my character. I wanted to give back to my mentor, but he didn’t take to it at all in the beginning of the program. Once Jake’s results were noticeable, I wanted to help [Hall] out, too.”
Improving the lives of all ages, Page has contributed to not only the wrestling community but also his supporters.
Even Demenczuk, a yogi virgin until meeting Page, considers himself a fan now.
“It’s all your own workout; as much as you put in, you get out of it,” Demenczuk said. “About three quarters into the session, my arms and legs were shaking. It gets your heart rate up and you lose weight, so I recommend it to anybody.”
For $69.95, or three monthly payments of $24.95, you can purchase a DDP Yoga pack consisting of six workouts, an instructional poster and a program guide at DDPYOGA.com.
As testimonies fly in from the top rope and beyond, DDP Yoga could redefine Page’s legacy.
“I just did my third audition for ‘Shark Tank,’” Page said. “When we get that kind of viewership, people won’t know me as the wrestler. They’ll know me as the fitness guru. And that’s really cool.”
John Corrigan can be reached at email@example.com.