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Pickleball Helped Woman Overcome Depression: Mary Jo Cline

Pickleball Helped Woman Overcome Depression: In today’s landscape, pickleball has captured hearts everywhere. Courts are popping up like daisies, drawing a diverse crowd from youngsters to retirees, with even fitness icon Denise Austin joining the fan club. The sport’s allure extends beyond its accessibility and affordability; it’s a gateway to community and camaraderie.

Pickleball is not just a game, it is a health powerhouse, supported by medical professionals for its comprehensive benefits. From physical fitness to mental well-being, it’s a low-impact, high-reward activity that’s gaining recognition for its therapeutic effects.

Overcoming Depression with Pickleball

The story of one woman’s journey stands as testament to pickleball’s transformative potential. After years battling depression, she found solace on the court, where the rhythm of the game and the supportive community provided a path to healing.

In a crucial moment, Mary Jo Cline’s voice cracked over the phone- “You need to come home,” pleading for her husband to come home. Depression, a relentless companion since the birth of her second child in 1995, had reached a breaking point that day. Tears flowed freely, and the weight of sadness seemed unbearable.

Seeking help, Mary Jo enrolled in an intensive outpatient program and began a regimen of antidepressants. Yet, despite these efforts and ongoing therapy, her battle with anxiety, self-doubt, and deep sorrow persisted, worsen by personal losses and bouts with cancer.

Days blurred into foggy routines of withdrawal and despair. Even simple tasks became daunting amidst chronic neuropathy and the haze of depression. Social interactions dwindled, and Mary Jo found solace only in the hours passing until day’s end.

In a serendipitous moment in 2015, Mary Jo stumbled upon a pickleball match. Spotting her daughters’ former high school tennis coach on the court, she couldn’t help but inquire about the game. As she observed the players in action, she was struck by its gentle intensity and simplicity. “I think this is a game I could get into,” Mary Jo thought optimistically.

Pickleball: A Game-Changer

Doctors prescribed exercise, but Mary Jo, never athletically inclined and grappling with chronic pain, struggled to find a sustainable routine. Then, fate intervened in the form of a pickleball game witnessed in 2015. Curiosity piqued, she inquired about the sport from her daughters’ former tennis coach. Its low-impact nature and easy learning curve sparked hope.

Attending her first game, Mary Jo was captivated. Beyond the physical workout that eased rather than exacerbated her pain, pickleball brought a newfound mental clarity. “It’s amazing, she thought. I feel less brain fog, and I am so much happier in general!.”- she marveled

 The Healing Power of Community

Committing to three sessions a week, Mary Jo immersed herself in pickleball, each game a step toward renewal. Beyond the court’s edge lay a supportive community that supported her self-esteem and kindled lasting friendships. Local pickleball festivals became cherished gatherings, connecting her with fellow enthusiasts who shared not just a love for the sport but a bond of resilience.

Today, at 59, Mary Jo Cline radiates vitality. Free from depression medication and buoyed by pickleball’s transformative impact, she reflects on her journey with gratitude. “At 59, I feel the best I’ve ever felt mentally, physically, and emotionally, I really do credit pickleball for that!” sunshine into your life.”

Pickleball Helped Woman Overcome Depression

News In Brief : Pickleball Helped Woman Overcome Depression

Pickleball has become a unifying force, attracting a diverse range of players from all walks of life, including fitness icon Denise Austin. Praised by medical professionals for its holistic benefits, pickleball not only enhances physical fitness but also promotes mental well-being through its low-impact, high-reward nature. Mary Jo Cline’s journey presents its transformative power, as she found relief from severe depression through regular play. Now, at 59, she thrives both mentally and physically, no longer dependent on medication.

ALSO READ: New Pickleball Facility Opens at Freedom Park in Greenwood



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