Sometimes it takes more than medication to heal. That’s why acupuncturist Linda Wentz founded Holistic Touch Center and its mission to help hasten the healing process by offering services that extend beyond the body to incorporate the needs of the mind and spirit. There, Silvy Franco, the center's holistic esthetician, blends years of skin care experience with training in natural health and energy medicine to produce treatments that restore the body while rebalancing the mind and spirit. She reads each client's skin like a map, plotting out appropriate treatment courses that are delivered as part of one of the center's rituals, which include components ranging from traditional facials and detoxifying peels to Vitamin C infusions and cold stone massages. In addition to performing these rituals, Silvy also helps clients adapt these treatments for use in at-home skin care regimens, keeping epidermises glowing and well-adjusted to changes in seasonal weather.
Those interested in acupuncture may enlist in Kirsten Jacob, a trained herbalist who received her Masters of Acupuncture and Oriental Medicine from Han University of Traditional Medicine in Tucson, Az. In addition to specializing in facial-rejuvenation acupuncture treatments, she also possess a background in pediatric respiratory therapy as well as general family treatment. Her specialities include pediatric and family acupuncture, behavioral/learning issues, and stress reduction and internal medicine. Kirsten incorporates classical Chinese botanical therapy into her work, which includes tui na–or Chinese medical/therapeutic massage–cupping, and moxa. When she is not helping her clients attain inner peace through eastern healing techniques, she tends to her kids while indulging in reading, writing, and traveling.
"Our brain is designed to realize what we wish, without any minor errors," says Dahn Yoga founder Ilchi Lee, "If you want success, it will create success. If you want happiness or health, it will create them. Anything is possible, as long as negative thoughts and emotions don't interfere." To make this challenging, yet hopeful philosophy accessible to all, Lee combined the Eastern concept of chi energy with his own brain-management system, developing a distinctive program that unlocks inner peace and sweeps up brain clutter caused by the daily stress of always having to find Waldo. Warm-up yoga maneuvers awaken muscles before 30–40 minutes of breathing, stretching, core practice, and meditation—including a signature brain-wave vibration technique that aims to calibrate mental and physical energies. Cool-down exercises ease the body back into quotidian functionality before a 10-minute teatime invites socialization among participants while bolstering pinkie endurance. Dahn Yoga is also taught at independently owned and operated franchises called Body & Brain Yoga.
LA Boxing’s fight-centric gyms ditch the polished look of wood-floored workout studios for gritty, competitive spaces filled with 150-pound punching bags and intense workouts. Like a baker molding gingerbread men, LA Boxing sculpts six-packs with boxing, kickboxing, and mixed-martial-arts classes. Although instructors and students agree that the gym’s atmosphere may enkindle intimidation in first-time attendees, most experience boosted self-confidence after conquering their first class. Private training sessions further stoke courage with workouts that leave patrons with the exhilaration of having survived 12 rounds in the ring or five minutes in a high-school lunchroom.
CycleStudio's instructors incorporate yoga poses along with a low-impact cardio workout on CycleOps indoor bicycles that spin 50-pound free wheels according to Washingtonian Magazine. Ensuring a whole-body workout capable of delivering strength, cardiovascular health, and Tour de France eligibility, HardCore Cycling classes begin with a calorie-torching stint atop the exercise bikes before crunching abdominals into an undulating expanse of toned musculature. Cycle-yoga classes combine a pulse-elevating cycling workout with 30 minutes of dynamic-yoga practice, and purely yoga sessions use flowing asana transitions to lengthen limbs until they can bear-hug a king-size mattress.