At 19 years old, Nick Zavoda was diagnosed with psoriatic arthritis. The symptoms: pain, swelling or stiffness in one or more joints, and joints that are red and warm to the touch.
While in paramedic school years later, he met Shannon Hildebrand, co-owner of CrossFit Sonora in California.
“She’s like, ‘Ya know, you should try this new workout. It’s really good for you. I think it’ll help with your joint problems,’” Zavoda recalls. “I was immediately hooked.”
It’s been about three months since the 24-year-old started CrossFit, and he reports good results.
“When I first started CrossFit, I couldn’t really even squat to 90 degrees. I could barely get below parallel without it hurting my knees. I just thought it was impossible,” Zavoda says. “I feel great now.”
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Additional reading: The Ties That Bind by T.J. Murphy, published June 11, 2012.