When I first placed a call to the Burdenko Institute I was desperate. I wondered, would this be another dead-end or an answer to my prayers?
Throughout my life I took for granted the joys of being active, until now. I was starting to experience a gradual decline in mobility due to increasing difficulties with my joints. It seemed that every activity I tried would end up with some sort of repetitive stress injury.
At this point, my activity level was at an all time low, as was my mental state. Inactivity and the frustration it created gradually gave way to a deepening depression.
I tried everything I could think of to regain the use of my limbs and enjoy life again. Despite visits to doctors, physical therapy centers, pain clinics and chiropractors, there was no notable improvement. Thank goodness I didn't give up! Once again I scheduled an appointment with an orthopedic surgeon and this time I would receive the recommendation that would change my life. She urged me to contact Dr. Burdenko as an alternative to traditional physical therapy.
Upon receiving my phone call, Dr. Burdenko scheduled our first session and I arrived, notebook in hand. I was soon to discover that this remarkable man is a pioneer of an innovative approach to achieving optimal health and well being. Somehow I realized the importance of learning what is called the Burdenko Method. I clung to this program and instructor as a lifeline, gradually drawing the strength needed to eventually overcome my debilitating emotional upset and depression.
The Burdenko Method is a unique program which consists of both water and land exercises. It is different from any other program I have experienced. For the first time, attention is not concentrated exclusively on the injured area. The variety of exercises taught by Dr. Burdenko are designed to stimulate (strengthen) all the muscles of the body. Working my entire body gets my blood pumping and gives me a positive feeling, which helps tremendously in the healing process. As Dr. Burdenko often reminds me, "life is movement!", and he never lets me forget to "smile!".
Another aspect of the program I had not encountered is the introduction of a mindful approach to exercise. The mind/body connection is a large part of the Burdenko philosophy for injury prevention. Have you ever been to a rehabilitation center where you were told to visualize the movement before executing it? My mind is now an active participant in my rehabilitation.
Understanding the Burdenko Method and having a wide variety of exercises to choose from gives me the flexibility to continuously change and tailor the program to whatever my current situation may be. For instance, experiencing pain while working out tells me to stop, reassess, and choose other exercises that allow movement without further injury. This knowledge enables me to handle setbacks without panicking, knowing that I can keep strong during the healing process. Such valuable lessons have transferred to my life outside the gym. I now focus on the positive qualities I have and make decisions on how to best utilize them to reach my goals. I also realize that my weaknesses are not insurmountable and, within reason, I can overcome anything!
To know the Burdenko Method is to be blessed, to know Dr. Burdenko is to be twice blessed. My deepest appreciation goes to Igor Burdenko. A mentor and friend who patiently listened to me and showed, by example, how to be physically and mentally strong. May the blessings we receive from this extraordinary person benefit all who seek a better life! Thank you Dr. Burdenko from me and all those whose lives you have touched with your compassion, wisdom and dedication.