After Mark Szostczuk completed his undergraduate studies as a Human Biology major, he was unsure what his next step would be. Friends and family suggested that he could be a doctor, since he was interested in both anatomy and caregiving. But Mark had inherited a healthy skepticism about western medicine from his father, who had treated all his kids' illnesses with Polish home remedies and pooh-poohed the idea of a medical degree. Mark's dad did, however, speak glowingly of the chiropractor that had soothed a chronic pain in his hip—and just like that, Mark realized he had found his calling.
Having graduated from New York Chiropractic College in 2000, Mark—now Dr. Szostczuk—has today been pursuing his ambitions of healing and helping others for a dozen years. With the help of his staff at Blue Ridge Chiropractic, he works with patients using careful adjustments and a variety of massage modalities, designed to help ameliorate pain and prevent future injury. He has also received his certification in Chiropractic Bio-Physics, an honor that fewer than 200 doctors throughout the country possess. This knowledge helps him rehabilitate patients through ligament reshaping following adjustments, resulting in a faster and safer healing process and less chance of reinjury during impromptu limbo-offs.
Woolfson Eye Institute’s founder and medical director Dr. Jonathan Woolfson is a board-certified ophthalmic surgeon who has performed more than 70,000 laser vision-correction procedures. Such clinical experience has helped him earn the trust of other medical professionals; he has performed more than 300 surgeries on his fellow eye doctors and trained and certified more than 100 North American LASIK surgeons. He has also fine-tuned the eyesight of professional athletes, including Ovie Mughelli, Curtis Lofton, and Kroy Biermann of the Atlanta Falcons.
Dr. Woolfson draws upon this extensive experience each time he customizes a laser procedure to his patients’ needs. He and his staff of doctors begin every treatment with in-depth consultations, where they determine the lasers, instruments, and novelty sound effects needed to successfully enhance eyesight. Once they’ve completed their procedures, they also offer eligible patients a Lifetime Assurance Plan, granting them free lifetime access to any fine-tuning surgeries.
After his residency at Albany Medical College, medical director Dr. David LaMond decided to continue his love for teaching by making patient education one of the core principles of Blue Sky MD's approach to total patient care. That's why Dr. LaMond and his team of physicians combine in-depth consultations, online resources, and medical vocabulary quizzes with their services, ensuring that patients undergoing supervised weight-loss treatments understand the results of body-composition analyses and how custom exercise and nutrition regimens work.
Blue Sky MD also follows the idea that overall well-being is not only about being physically healthy but also about being emotionally healthy. Thus, counselors work side by side with physicians and liberally compliment patients on the shininess of their shoes. The clinic further helps patients feel good about themselves by offering aesthetic services, such as chemical peels, beauty injections, noninvasive body contouring, and laser skin treatments.
James Whittle gleaned extensive knowledge of acupuncture and holistic health care from his studies at the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill, Seattle's Bastyr University, and the Shanghai University of Traditional Chinese Medicine as well as during an eight-month stint working alongside doctors in Chinese hospitals. The acupuncturist currently leads a staff of dedicated well-wishers and emotionally fulfilled pincushions, helping relieve patients' pain with such contemporary and non-Western treatments as evidence-based acupuncture, massage therapy, and herbal medicine. Taking a holistic view of each guest's well-being, Blue Ridge Acupuncture Clinic also proffers lifestyle and nutritional counseling to help with weight loss and healthy eating while emphasizing the importance of prevention in maintaining well-balanced, pain-free physical and mental health.
Lisa Zahiya’s dance career has taken her all over the world, but it might be the work she’s doing in her hometown she finds the to be the most rewarding. At her studio, she teaches her students how to express themselves through dance with a curriculum that hinges on belly-dancing classes. Zahiya, who was named 2008 Tribal Fusion Belly Dancer of the Universe at the Wiggles of the West belly-dance competition, offers both traditional and cardio-heavy versions of the core-chiseling style. Though she helms a majority of the studio’s classes—which also include Bollywood-style dance, hip-hop, world-dance workouts, and kids’ belly dance—Zahiya enlists instructor Teejei Brigham to teach tribal dance. All classes welcome beginners, since Zahiya believes that dance is an art form that everyone—including the rare few with pogo sticks for legs—can enjoy.
Steve Mohrman, an alumnus of the New York College of Health Professions, is the official massage therapist of the UNCA athletic department. As the founder of Hands on Health, he has steered the practice toward treating clients to the soothing strokes of clinical-massage and sports-massage services. He and his crew have designed these modalities to treat chronic pain, improve athletic performance, and promote general health and wellness, which used to be colonel health and wellness. Steve and his team of licensed massage therapists take their bodywork treatments a step further than many spas do by offering integrated-massage sessions customized to address each individual's specific therapeutic needs, and they emphasize relaxation at all times.
A member of the International Chiropractic Association, Dr. Nicole D’Ippolito seeks to spread good health and wellness in as many ways as she can. In working with her clients, she attempts to find and treat the root of each of their problems, and in the community, she spreads her knowledge through educational workshops, speaking engagements, and outreach as a local and UN ambassador for Foot RX. Along with chiropractic care, the wellness center offers massage therapy, decompression treatments, and the Beautiful Image treatment, a procedure that reduces the appearance of fine lines on the face through noninvasive, microcurrent skin tightening.
While Christine smiles every time a client announces another drop in pant size, she is more proud of helping people lower their blood pressure levels and stabilize their blood sugar levels. Motivating people to transform their health on the inside versus how they look on the outside is why Christine opened her own fitness studio, Christine’s Cardio Fitness. She and a crew of certified Zumba instructors help students dance their way into better health with easy-to-follow routines set to high-energy tunes and yodelers in classes like Zumba Fitness, Zumba Toning, Zumba Sentao, Zumba Step, and Zumba Gold. Not wanting anyone to miss out on the fun of Zumba, Christine also offers a free class on Saturdays for kids during the summer months.
Anytime Fitness, which boasts 1,689 clubs in North America, makes it easier for average folks to etch out time for exercise by doing one simple thing: staying open 24 hours a day for 365 days a year. As fitness seekers challenge themselves on cardio and strength-training machines and hoist Iron Grip free weights in clean, well-stocked facilities, security monitoring ensures they’re safe and producing enough sweat to meet official government standards. Members can also ramp up their exercise regimens with the help of Anytime Fitness’s staff of personal trainers, who demonstrate moves and sling motivating tips. After workouts, guests can shower in the private restrooms or browse the gym's private line of nutritional supplements.
Ladies Workout Asheville's supportive, attentive staff help women navigate the facility's full exercise circuit, packed schedule of workout classes, and other body-bettering amenities such as tanning beds and nutrition counseling. Members and pass holders can tone tired muscles while shaking their hips in a Zumba class, tackle cardio and strength machines sized specifically for women's bodies, or channel their disdain for punching bags during group kickboxing lessons. After each workout, a thermal massage on a Migun bed relaxes weary muscles, and the sweat-sapping far-infrared sauna evicts toxins from the skin and lifts voodoo stress curses. Ladies Workout Asheville also offers fitness programs for kids at Cardio Kids.
With a long-standing commitment to women, children, minorities, and social-justice issues and a presence in Asheville since 1906, the YWCA is more than just a workout facility. Its history is peppered with groundbreaking programs to bolster race relations, achieve women's empowerment through business ventures, and promote children's health by providing access to physical activity, urging them to hula-hoop with donuts instead of eating them. Staff members further the organization's vision with dedication to school-age programs for health and fitness efforts and initiatives to help unemployed community members locate jobs in the area.
It's a Great Day for Dancing's experienced instructors guide students through lessons in waltz, foxtrot, swing, and more. With each class tailored to the students' individual learning styles, burgeoning rug cutters should see immediate results in their hip-twisting abilities. Students can also request instruction in less ballroom-bound styles, such as salsa, West Coast swing, and shag. Aspiring hoofers test out their moves at Friday dance parties, where they can shimmy and shake alongside fellow students, instructors, and the reanimated legs of Gene Kelly.
Boutier Wine & Design owners James and Laura Cawthern oversee a collection of award-winning, locally produced red, white, and fruit wines. Inside their facility, the couple casts casual vibes across a variety of special events, including Ladies Night on the first Thursday of every month and Wine Down Fridays, when visitors can celebrate the weekend by sipping wine instead of by fervidly burning their work clothes. In addition to their potables, the Cawtherns help lift spirits with personalized gift baskets and custom labels that outfit bottles with personal photos.
Dr. Chris Port of Asheville Smile Center isn't satisfied with merely keeping teeth and gums healthy—he also goes to great lengths to make them look good. Aside from comprehensive cleanings and exams, his office delivers cosmetic treatments ranging from thin porcelain veneers to three different types of teeth whitening. Dr. Port understands that the condition of a mouth, like the condition of a bobsled's brakes, can affect the well-being of the whole body, which is why he customizes dental treatments to each patient's specific needs and goals.
At O3 Health and Fitness, Keith Wimsett leads a team of certified trainers while his wife Marlena rubs down recovering muscles with therapeutic massage. Keith and his team advocate a four-tiered philosophy built around increasing strength and cardiovascular endurance while monitoring food intake and hydration. Personal trainers work with individuals or small groups to forge customized fitness plans while also eliciting sweaty smiles through group boot camps.