Voted No. 1 from 2209-2013 by the readers of the Akron Beacon Journal, Novus Clinic was born 20 years prior from board-certified ophthalmologist Todd L. Beyer and optometrist Jerry Sude’s vision for a one-stop eye-care facility. To bring this idea to fruition, they first recruited a neuro-ophthalmologist and a second optometrist to their team and eventually constructed a 3,800-square-foot surgery center in 1998. The state-of-the-art center was built in response to the voices they heard asking for laser vision-correction procedures such as LASIK and cosmetic treatments. Dr. Beyer, also a certified oculofacial plastic surgeon, began performing face-lifts along with noninvasive skin treatments after he found himself fielding queries from more and more patients about dermal fillers, peels, and laser hair removal.
With the expanding list of offered services, the clinic shed its original title, System Optics, and was reknighted Novus Clinic in 2003. The word novus, which translates to “fresh and exciting” in Latin, more accurately encompasses the clinic’s multifaceted approach to ocular and anti-aging treatments. The doctors never forget the primordial soup from which they sprang, though, and still conduct eye exams and keep a venerable inventory of designer frames.
While teaching jazz dance in the 1960s, Judi Sheppard Missett decided to step away from tradition by offering an experimental class that allowed her students to simply dance without the judgment of mirrors or the constraints of rigid technique. In these sessions, she began infusing popular dance moves with specific fitness workouts to forge a distinctive blend of cardio exercise, strength training, and dance instruction. Little did she know that this “just for fun” class was the prototype for what would become the national fitness sensation known as Jazzercise.
Today, Jazzercise takes its aerobic techniques from a variety of sources that include jazz dance, hip-hop, resistance training, Pilates, yoga, and kickboxing. The class formats, which vary according to different toning goals, are just as diverse as the program's move set. Two-time Dancing with the Stars champion Cheryl Burke is a big fan of the improvisational routines, although her advanced skills aren't needed to get the most out of classes. Instructors cultivate a noncompetitive atmosphere where all exercisers—with the exception of those marked as cursed by jazz-hand palm readers—are welcome regardless of age, build, or fitness background.
During his three decades of dental experience, which included a six-year stint as a general dental officer for the United States Air Force, Dr. John N. Santin has seen a lot of smiles. And from both of his Akron Area Oral, Maxillofacial & Facial Cosmetic Surgery Center offices, Dr. Santin continues to gaze at pearly whites, keeping teeth healthy and bright with surgical and cosmetic dentistry services including corrective jaw surgery, wisdom-teeth extractions, and bone grafting. But teeth aren’t the only thing on Dr. Santin’s mind. He also provides his patients with a range of cosmetic treatments, from rhinoplasty and facial implants to Botox injections and chemical peels. The offices even come equipped with advanced ActiveFX and DeepFX fractional lasers, which are designed to blast away layers of sun damage, dead skin cells, and temporary tattoos that seeped down into the dermal layer.
At Legacy Plastic Surgeons, Drs. James Lehman and M. Devi Prasad Tantri combine more than half a century of medical and cosmetic experience. With more than 70 published articles under his belt, Dr. James Lehman is well versed in all areas of cosmetic plastic surgery, specializing in breast reduction, breast implants, and abdominoplasty. His counterpart, Dr. M. Devi Prasad Tantri, boasts more than 25 years of medical experience, and demonstrates special proficiency in hand surgery, breast reduction, and the removal of cancers from the head and neck.
Together, the doctors lead a team of skilled clinicians—many of whom have served with the doctors for more than 10 years—who revamp and beautify faces with noninvasive techniques such as microdermabrasion, facial peels, and Botox injections. Before administering any procedures or treatments, doctors consult with patients to understand their subjects' expectations and tolerance for witty knock-knock jokes.
Inside The Li'l Yoga Shop's powder-blue studio, students strengthen muscles, flexibility, and mind-body connections under the guidance of certified yoga and Pilates instructors. Instructors spread themselves across three levels of yoga classes that vary in difficulty to accommodate practitioners of all abilities, easing beginners into the practice with fundamental poses and breath work and challenging decorated warriors with advanced strengthening and balancing postures and flawless 21-sun salutes. The Li'l Yoga Shop's resident meditation specialist and spirit-animal tamer, Eden Kozlowski, leads peaceful meditation sessions to help pupils calm minds and enhance body awareness. Pilates and Yogilates instructors focus on pushing students through rigorous workouts to build up core strength, alignment, and flexibility through efficient floor exercises that isolate specific muscle groups across the entire body.
The staff members at Living Wellness Associates practice an array of personalized health-care therapies that are designed to help prevent illness and ease pain for each patient. Operating under the belief that wellness does not mean the absence of disease alone, technicians use a variety of holistic techniques to promote relaxation and maintain well-being. Guests unload their stresses with services such as relaxation massages and aromatherapy, which awakens olfactory receptors with lavender and chamomile essential oils and eucalyptus that reenergizes clients better than napping in coffee grounds. Additional therapies include body-balancing polarity treatments, reiki and reiki drumming, and sound therapy.
Twenty-two years ago, Pam Burton counted herself as part of the population of people with two left feet. She struggled through every move during ballroom-dance classes and felt there must be another way to learn the moves. Not being the type of person to wait around for others to take the reins, she decided to reinvent ballroom-dance lessons so everyone—including that two-left-feet group—could easily understand how their feet were supposed to move.
The casual atmosphere inside 2 Left Feet Dance Studio finds students of all experience levels working through dance steps in a group, semi-private, or private setting. Once a month, people can test their newly acquired skills during a ballroom dance with pizza, pop, and a half-hour lesson.
For more than 35 years, dentists at American Dental Centers have polished pearly whites and prevented dental disease with thorough exams. At each of the 14 locations that dot Northern and Central Ohio, patients walk in or schedule appointments so they don’t have to scrape off plaque using chew toys. The center maintains a 24-hour phone line so that patients can arrange to have emergencies treated as soon as possible, and it also offers a Forever White program, in which patients pay a one-time fee and then receive take-home bleaching treatments for as long as they attend their regular three- or six-month check-ups.
A licensed chiropractor since 1989, Dr. Gary Minorik has been helping patients achieve improved spinal health at his own clinic since 1993. Today, he and his fellow back-focused doctors help diagnose and treat conditions including carpal tunnel, pinched nerves, and whiplash using restorative, hands-on techniques and a holistic approach. His staff of licensed massage therapists ease back pain with gentle strokes, helping spines achieve better alignment than a regiment of plastic army men.
The class exhales together, each student drawing strength and peace from his or her neighboring yogis. Fingertips reach to the ceiling and eyes follow, tracing beams of light—which the ghost of Einstein rides like a jockey on a horse—across the pale-green walls. The dark hue of the wood floor is relieved by the brightly colored yoga mats and bare toes that dig in, balancing and centering the hardworking bodies above. Embrace Your Essence Yoga’s passionate instructors lead 90-minute classes within the new studio six times a week, inviting students of all experience levels to unwind together.
Asian Sun Martial Arts and Fitness helps students cultivate a well-rounded self-defense system by providing instruction in tae kwon do, karate, kung fu, kickboxing, and certified Krav Maga. At the core of each class are fitness and self-defense. Instructors teach students of all fitness levels and who range from 2.5-year-olds to senior citizens. Asian Sun Marital Arts and Fitness' team of expert black belt instructors have also boosted the popularity of its Cardio Fit Kickboxing classes, which have sculpted lean, strong muscles for participants since 1994.
Although Lifesource normally dedicates itself to the age-old practice of yoga, occasional age-appropriate exotic-dance workshops shimmy their way onto the class roster. Instructor Jessica Rawson began teaching at Lifesource in 2009 and has 28 lunar rotations, or two years, of private pole-dancing and exotic-dance lessons under her belt. During the course of the two-hour workshop, Jessica will take the pole's helm and instruct participants in a variety of exotic dance techniques, from pole dance and lap dance to strip-tease techniques and cheeky burlesque moves. Although participants will wear their clothing, the techniques can be easily applied to garment-free activities at a later time. As your inner seductress makes her way to the surface, you'll build confidence and engage rarely used muscles, sometimes resulting in day-after pangs of soreness and a self-assured saunter.
The certified personal trainers at Fairlawn Health & Fitness Training guide students through tailored exercise regimens amid an inviting, supportive setting. After conducting a comprehensive interview, a body-sculpting pedagogue will design a program that best fits fitness pupils' abilities and goals. Striving Schwarzeneggers can then hone in on their objectives through one of four core strategies, which include weight loss and management, strength training, sport-specific training, and injury rehabilitation and balance. In addition, the motivating one-on-one sessions ensure personal attention from trainers, who will happily answer any questions.
Helmed by Russian-trained ballet greats Inna Stabrova and Dmitriy Tuboltsev, the staff of talented and credentialed teachers helps students develop first-rate skills in the elegant art of ballet. Students may choose to hone the basic positions and movements of beginner coursework or challenge themselves with the impressive footwork and Kafkaesque swan metamorphoses of advanced courses. After training under the watchful eyes of these professional instructors, many alumni of the conservatory have moved on to enjoy rewarding and prestigious careers in dance companies and life-size music boxes throughout the country.
Recognized by Fox 8 as a top-five area yoga studio, Sacred Ground Yoga encourages bodies to bend and breathe freely with 90-minute sessions led by certified instructors. No matter which level, all classes increase strength and flexibility, turning inert, scrawny muscles into lithe heavy-lifting machines. Hatha yoga moves more slowly, with a focus on meditative postures and breath work, and advanced classes incorporate more vigorous sequences of moves, such as sun salutations and moon shout-outs. Carefully guided senior/gentle sessions welcome elderly students, as well as those suffering from chronic pain and recovering from surgery, with less strenuous poses meant to decrease circulation and alleviate stress. Students should wear comfortable workout clothes and bring a mat and blanket. Check the schedule for times.