A basket greets visitors at the entrance to Soula Grove, inviting them to kick off their shoes before they pad through the door. Inside, up to eight students or two fitness-focused octopodes gather inside a cozy studio space that hosts yoga, Pilates, and meditation sessions for all skill levels. During each type of class, seasoned instructors guide pupils toward greater levels of inner calm and mind-body balance. Traditional Hatha Yoga classes revolve around ancient poses and breathing exercises that strengthen the muscles while centering the mind, and private hatha instruction can focus on alignment of specific poses or larger fitness goals such as toning the limbs and boosting flexibility. Filled with core-sculpting isometrics, Pilates mat classes help make physiques as long and stretchy as a slinky made of string cheese. Many classes conclude with relaxation treatments, which range from soothing eye masks to cool cloths scented with lavender or peppermint.
In its mission to elevate students to another level of physical and mental balance, ReCharge Pilates and Barre doesn't reject its industrial environment. Instead, it embraces it. Featuring exposed brick walls and pipes, bare mahogany floors, and sparse decor, the studio surrounds students with a minimal space lit mostly by giant windows and the fire of a mystical, eternal torch. Here, four classes blend the techniques of Pilates and barre fitness, and occasionally incorporate other exercise styles. Much like these classes, ReCharge's owner, Sloan Rachmuth, draws from several disciplines. The Stott Pilates–certified instructor's passion for wellness has led her to study psychology at Harvard, develop a clinical weight-loss program, and open more than one fitness studio.
Before stepping onto the ice or the baseball diamond, members of the Carolina Hurricanes and the Durham Bulls pay a visit to Eye Care Associates, who have provided top-notch eyeglasses, contact lenses, and eye exams for nearly 35 years. Founded by Dr. Stephen Bolick, the team of vision specialists at the center help rid blurriness from pucks, balls, and signs held by adoring fans. When they?re not gazing into the eyes of athletes, they and their fellow doctors at a network of clinics stay busy correcting the vision of seniors, children, and adults. The company topped Indy Week's 2012 Readers? Choice poll for best optometrists in the area and received a Standing Ovation award as the best eyecare center in the Triangle in 2012 from readers of Metro Magazine.
With the aim of becoming the Ritz-Carlton of dental offices, Dr. Jean Woods and her staff lavish patients with individualized attention and luxurious amenities during aesthetic and general dentistry services. The staff soothes dentist's-office-related anxieties by blocking out sounds with a Bose headphones system or by painlessly warding off discomfort with a computer-operated local anesthetic. To remove plaque, they use a technique called air abrasion, which eschews harsh drills for compressed air. Whether boosting patients' self-confidence with root-canal therapy or performing general check-ups, the staff uses advanced technology, including intraoral cameras and rotary instruments. Dr. Woods keeps her tools sharp by participating in several professional organizations, including the American Dental Association and the North Carolina State Board of Dental Examiners. She also plays an active role within the community by sponsoring the shadowing program, which welcomes future dentists to explore the field and partake in its after-work foosball tournaments.
Husband-and-wife team Eric and Valine Zeigler strive to transform fitness into a party with their high-energy Zumba classes. The pair makes attendees sweat with easy-to-follow dance moves set to invigorating Latin tunes. With a consistent series of Zumba workouts, patrons can shed pounds or win at job interviews with their stepping skills.
At Snap Fitness’ 24-hour gym, guests come and go armed with their access keys and are able to work out at their convenience. Around the gym, rows of cardio machines and stacks of free weights stand by as personal trainers show guests the most efficient ways to pump iron and bench-press their old refrigerators.