When I was a kid I used to run around on my knees in full lotus, thinking nothing of it.

I think the last time I did that I was 12.... Then as I became a teenager sitting cross legged wasn't cool, so we would constantly be sitting in chairs all hunched with rounded backs, pretending to be all badass.

Then you add all the sports without stretching... Plus all the time spent lifting weights with minimal stretching... And you have the perfect recipe for tight hips, bad lower back, and eventually your knees will start to go.

I moved from Ontario to Whistler in '92 to pursue snowboarding and the mountain lifestyle.

When I moved there I was in my peak physical shape but very inflexible. I left all the Basketball and Pro Beach Volleyball to spin and flip on my snowboard.

We used to make a joke when we were learning a new trick... "Hundred slams a trick!"

Which meant, to really learn a trick off all different take offs, you would probably slam about a hundred times...... And we learned a lot of tricks. So you can imagine the toll it takes on your body!

The pros these days are cross training like crazy, to keep up with the madness of the triple corks and crazy spins. They have foam pits, water jumps, gymnastic harnesses, and coaches... We would just huck ourselves and pray!!

I wish someone would have drilled into me that being mindful to just sit cross legged as much as possible, would benefit me incredibly.

Every year my knees got worse, the tricks got bigger, and the consequences got greater!

Two minor ACL tears, two minor MCL tears, meniscus tears in both knees, and eventually a broken femur.

Although I raced a couple Pro Boardercross races and had some Freestyle Sponsors, I knew that it was in my best interest to move to Van and focus on healing my damaged body.

I found a great Gym ( Fitness Quest ), joined some dance classes, stopped drinking ( Bartended for 17years... 'Nuff said ), and started a new path.

Fitness Quest closed so we moved to Olympic... Which was awesome. I was training heavy with my partner Reed and performed a fair bit as a dancer. I was pretty bulky ( 200lbs ) when I took my first Yoga class on my 40th Birthday at Olympic Gym.

I had to sit on 3 blocks to cross my legs! It was pretty embarrassing, humbling, eye opening, and just what I needed. I started once a week.... Then when I shifted to 3 classes a week, my progress would dramatically improve!

At 42 I began teaching yoga. Because of my strength, the arm balancing became really fun really fast, but my hips and knees were still very tight.

Two meniscus surgeries and a hip replacement changed the game for me!

Although the rehab was very tough, the yoga, specially the Yin yoga was my main healer!

I went from 3 blocks to a chip foam block... Then no blocks. It is still work, but "Practice Makes Progress!" It took me till last year before I could sit for a long period of time, cross legged. So last year I added Meditation into my life. My goal was to sit for 20 minutes without shifting around.... I started with 5 minutes, just counting to 50 breaths in the morning. That quickly moved to 150 breaths.... And eventually 20 minute meditations.

This repetition is how your Practice will grow. In the last couple years I have been visiting half lotus a lot more. The seated sequence in Rocket Yoga's First series, is taken from Ashtanga Yoga... Rocket 1 is basically Rocket's Primary Series... Yoga Chikitsa ( Yoga Therapy )... Also the splits sequence has done wonders for my practice as well... "The more open my hips get, the happier my body is!"

I also swear by Active Yin yoga to heal from injuries/ surgeries. Active Yin combines functional movement with long held Yin poses.

I solely teach these two Practices these days. Rocket Yoga to strengthen, flow, heal and be challenged..... Active Yin get into those cranky spots, and sit with them, so they get less cranky!

I'm very excited to see where these Practices will take me in the coming years.

I'm more excited to share them with my students to help them move through their discomfort, to a more manageable life.

When you see me in Full Lotus in the future, know that it was an amazing journey!

Practice Makes Progress

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Updated: May 9

I was an Ambassador with the Float House in Vancouver. Once a week I would do a 90 minute float in one of their sensory depravation tanks. It became my weekly meditation and a great reason to float in tons of Epsom salts. I'm a very A Type personality so my floats were always very active and I would end up getting a lot of business ideas in the tank!

It was January of 2017 and I was floating and thinking about my name, and all the nicknames I've had over the years. I never felt like a Chris so I always had nicknames that my friends/ family would call me. My brother called me "Bubs", my sister called me "Godersin" ( I actually can't remember where that came from? )

I was "Bandit" when I played basketball in University, "Dr.D" when I wanted to be a rapper ( Don't ask ), Man Of, Dugeman, Duge, and Doogie.

When I moved to Whistler in '92 I met a Pro Snowboarder named Risto Scott. I thought what an original name, so I asked him where it came from, thinking it was Scandinavian or something...... And he said Christopher.

My chin hit the ground, and I thought that's it!!

But I couldn't just change my name there because he was one of the top Pros at the time in the village, and I couldn't say, "I'm Risto too now!"..... So I kept it in the back of my brain.

While I'm floating Risto Alan Duggan comes back in my brain, and the initials RAD popped into my head!

Christopher Alan Duggan's initials "CAD" stands for "thief".... Not such a great brand name.

But RAD really kinda fits with everything I have gone through. Even though my background is very "snowboarder/ surfer"..... I never really used the word RAD.... I guess I was just waiting for Yoga to enter my life..... To make it "RAD"!!

As this epiphany is washing over me, I'm thinking that it's time to commit to Risto.

I knew it was going to be weird for a few years, but then it's the norm.

So then the wheels started turning and I needed a logo to get the ball rolling. My friend Andrew Skuja for my high school basketball team was a graphic artist in Ontario. designed my logo and I was off.

I started with T-Sirts/ Tanks under the name RAD Yoga Gear and added the Yoga Bags that I was handcrafting myself. It felt great to add my take on what was available for the yoga practitioner.

My next step was shorts! For men in yoga you kind of have one option.... Lululemon.

Because I had some sewing experience I would bring home my new Lululemon pants, and immediately turn them into 3/4 length shorts that were tight below the knee.

I look ridiculous in shorty shorts with my long legs and boney knees!

I also couldn't understand why brands wouldn't make 3/4 shorts, that stayed tight to your knees, so you had fabric there when you are arm balancing?!

So I would do that to all my pants!

I used to get dudes asking me where I got my shorts all the time..... Because they had the same issues.

My good friend Paul Gazso used to own a high end Skate Shop called Paul's Boutique. He was also my Snowboard Sponser when I lived in Whistler. He asked me about my shorts one day... When I told him I altered the shorts myself, he said "Why don't you produce them yourself?' I told him "I have no idea how I would even start that."..... He said, "I do!"

So he found Precision Patterns in Richmond for Production and Kendor Fabrics in Richmond for supplies and RAD Rocket Shorts were created.

I actually designed a pair of 3/4 shorts and a tank top for the Lululemon Lab when they were on Broadway & Cambie. The shorts sold out in a week, so I knew I had something there.

They also had a product called the "Long John" that I really liked.

RAD Rocket Shorts are a combo of those two shorts with a couple other tweaks.

They stay tight below the knees to help with arm balancing, fitted so they don't get in the way when you're floating, the 4-way stretch moisture wicking fabric is incredible, and I have even added long pockets off to the side so you can have your phone in your pocket while in the gym!

I even did a short run of Rocket Shorty Shorts to follow the trend. ( Seen below on Klay.. First dude )

They initially were loosely fitted with a drop crotch. Every time I did another run I would tweak them, making them more fitted, adding different colour gussets, and even shortening them a bit. I absolutely love what they have turned into, and feel they are fully tweaked!

I have done tons of RAD T-Shirts/ Tanks/ Sweaters, and really love coming up with new designs. Tattoo artists Steve Moore , Nicki Lochmatter , and Arden "Kid Marow" Ross have all contributed to my designs.

I started with 100% cotton and shifted to a Tri-Blend fabric which I love so much more than even the moisture wicking technical fabrics. For T's and Tanks.... Tri-Blend is the way to go! It holds it's shape way better and doesn't get heavy when you sweat.

I live in these sweaters! They are so perfect for pre and post practice.... I have friends saying, "Is it normal that I wear your sweaters, for weeks at a time?'..... Hahah.... Yep!

I have just recently collaborated with Supported Soul for a cork yoga mat. I have been an Ambassador with Nicole at for a few years now. Her yoga mats are amazing and keeping things local is awesome. I asked her if she would be interested in adding a Cork mat to her line.... She was totally down, so we got together an created a new Cork/ Recycled Rubber mat.

"Risto's Rocket Cork Mat" is 4mm thick, 26" x 70"... Comes with a carrying strap.

Of course you can upgrade to a Custom Handcrafted RAD Yoga Bag to carry all your gear!

Environmentally safe/ friendly, sustainable, non-toxic, bio-degradable, no glues or harsh chemicals added, cork and natural rubber bonded with water based eco adhesives.

"The more you sweat, the more you grip!"

I'm excited to add more designs and eventually Track Pants and Touques for the cooler days!

Keep an eye out for new designs and also upcoming RAD Yoga Surf Retreats in Mexico, Tofino, and Nicaragua.

Keep practicing and stay RAD!

Costa Dulce Beach Bungalows and Resort, is an absolute gem nestled on the Pacific Coast, near San Juan Del Sur Nicaragua. Playa Escameca is our Private Surf Break that Costa Dulce overlooks!

Erin Jacob, Jim Heppner, and I can't wait to host another action packed week full of Surfing, Yoga ( Rocket, Acro, Yin ), fun excursions, and amazing food!!

This will be my 4th trip to Costa Dulce. The jungle paradise is the perfect place to detach, truly connect with nature, hang with amazing people, and support a beautiful community.

Tyson and Kit are B.C. boys that created Costa Dulce. They now employ over 50 locals as their staff, work with Vital Actions Turtle Rescue & Beach Clean up, and Escamequita project to help with children's education. The resort is self sufficient, off grid, very safe, and pristine.

We offer daily excursions that include a gorgeous Waterfall Hike, Sunrise at La Flores Turtle Sanctuary, Surf Instruction, a trip to San Juan Del Sur, Salsa classes, Cooking classes, and maybe some Hip Hop?!!

The accommodations are awesome..... Everyone has their own Beach Bungalow ( 1-4 people ) overlooking the ocean, with a hammock, and the nightly opportunity to be lulled to sleep by crashing waves!!

Costa Dulce Yoga:

We begin the day with some amazing coffee and fresh fruit picked on site.

Then it's "Rocket Time"!

I teach Rocket #1, Rocket #2, Inversions, and a Rocket #3 in the morning. These set sequences are challenging but are all levels.... Optional arm balances and Inversions are offered daily throughout the week.

The Rocket practice was created by Larry Schultz in the 90's. He took 1st, 2nd, and 3rd series of Ashtanga Yoga, and created 3 brilliant sequences from them!

My body responded to these sequences better than any other practice to date. They tick off all the boxes of a well rounded, healing, strong, power yoga practice!

"The poses we don't like so much, are generally the poses we need the most!"..... Keeping us humble. So set sequences are perfect for keeping us well balanced.

We then have a large Breakfast and the afternoon to Surf, go on an excursion, hike, or simply read a book/ nap in a hammock!

Before dinner it's Acro/ Yin time.

Erin & Jim will be guiding you through some super fun and very safe Acro Yoga. Erin owns 3 studios in Maple Ridge and is a Therapeutic Yoga Master. Jim is Erin's husband and teaches Karate and Yoga at their studios.

Their energy is infectious and the Acro classes are a blast!

They begin the week with the basics, and progress to some very creative and fun flows.

The whole crew always ends up surprised at how much they loved the Acro, and often head home to seek out their local Acro community, to keep the stoke alive.

Following the Acro classes, we wind down, and get into some Juicy Sunset Yin.

After a day of Surfing the shoulders need some attention, and it always feels amazing to get back into the hips as the sun is setting.

After Yin the Dinner Bell goes off and we enjoy another amazing meal, followed by a cocktail at the bar Casa Ola, or nice cup of tea.

If you want to join us this year contact myself or Erin....... Spots are limited!!!

#rocketyogaretreat #rocketyoga #yogasurfretreat #rocketyogateacher #yogasurf #acroyoga #yinyoga #surfing #surfinstruction #nicaragua #turtles #turtlerescue #vitalactions #getaway #waterfallhike #massages #salsadancing #hammock #unplug

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