Sabrena Wicker had a light-bulb moment as she received her first massage: her career calling was to become a massage therapist. Wicker enrolled in massage school, earned a degree, and opened Tinker Massage and Day Spa Studio. Within the spa's softly lit treatment rooms, massage therapists practice several modalities and perform spa treatments for singles or doubles. To enhance bodywork sessions, the therapists incorporate elements of nature—heated stones infuse heat into muscles, essential oils perfume the air, and a charm of hummingbirds creates a relaxing breeze.
Breathing and gentle stretches kick off a typical hatha-influenced yoga class at Awaken Your Senses Yoga, helping students relax and find their centers. As the class progresses, students move on to asanas—or poses—of various difficulty levels. Finally, a guided meditation and rest finishes a session.
A subtle heat spreads throughout Fuel the Soul, distinct from the scorching air at hot-yoga studios that warm the room with thermostats. The muscle-melting energy seeps into muscles, coaxing tension away. This brand of heat comes from a system that emits infrared rays, capable of penetrating deeper into tissues and detoxifying patrons while they move through classic yoga poses. Co-owner Greg Fine explains to Patch.com, "Exercising … in an infrared heated sauna can help you burn calories much faster." The heat emanates from lamps that, according to Greg, are identical to those used by surgeons in neonatal hospital units and fast-food line-cooks in NASA space vessels. Customers can reap the heat's benefits, which include a faster metabolism and easier healing, whether they’re attending yoga classes or simply steeping in the far-infrared sauna.
Another offering as unusual as a cat and dog that only fight about who loves the other more is the Gyrotonic workout, "a unique method that uses movements found in swimming, yoga, and tai chi and helps improve strength, flexibility, balance, and coordination." Greg—who studied under Juliu Horvath, the Romanian dancer and exile who developed the exercise to recover after tearing his Achilles tendon and rupturing a few spinal disks—teaches the technique to students of all fitness levels and ages, whether they’re recovering from injuries or courting greater flexibility.
Achieve Fitness’s team of certified trainers builds healthy bodies from the ground up using cardio and strength exercises, ViSalus and LifeVantage nutritional supplements, and a hearty dose of encouragement. In addition to helping clients set specific long- and short-term goals, the trainers track their progress during custom fitness programs composed of personal training, small-group training, boot camps, or a combination of all three. Exercises are tailored to a variety of fitness levels during each routine, allowing new and seasoned exercisers to cultivate optimal levels of endurance, flexibility, and brawn. Personal-training sessions contain the highest level of customization and a rotating lineup of physical challenges that keep clients engaged and motivated. Workouts may take place in homes, at local gyms, or, in the case of boot camps, at nearby parks and churches.
In addition to designing exercise regimens for individuals, Achieve Fitness's trainers build fitness programs for companies, religious groups, and apartment complexes. Between face-to-face workouts, these programs' participants can access a host of online health resources, including more than 750 fitness videos, a recipe database, and a calculator that computes the number of calories burned while jumping rope or unattended roller-coaster turnstiles.
At Teaze Dance & Fitness, instructors draw from history to inform many of their classes?that's why you might see students channeling Bettie Page's famed burlesque twirls, or rehearsing disco moves on roller skates. Conveniently located in the Automobile Alley district of downtown Oklahoma City, photo shoots see subjects drape themselves in feather boas and unfurl fans on antiquated furniture, emulating vintage pinups without enduring an old-timey cameraman's requests to smile and say "transcontinental railroad." Even the studio's three performing troupes, including the Teaze Pole Team and Oklahoma Showgirls, traverse time with their varied routines. Just as they span the century with their titillating teachings, they welcome visitors of all ages and builds to participate, allaying anxiety with the fact that most of their students are beginners.
However, the staff embraces modern rhythms as well. They welcome guests to access their sultry side on 14 studio poles, where seven levels of pole-dance classes reveal techniques from basic spins to competition choreography. Their private parties, ideal for birthdays or bachelorettes, entertain groups with empowering lessons on pole-, chair-, and lap-dances, and fitness options cover Pilates and barre workouts.
Travis Garza became a fitness operative at the same time that he officially became an adult, commencing his personal-training career at age 18. As the now-48-year-old progressed to earn his NASM certification and direct multiple training centers, he was constantly mounting a counteroffensive to "fitness fraud" and common gym stressors. Eventually, he created his own workout plans to help to reshape his clients' physiques, taking on the title of "The Master of Body Transformation." His methods have since been featured on KOCO, FOX 25, and KTOK talk radio for their slimming, confidence-building results.
Whether he is leading a fat-loss boot camp or personal-training session, Travis strives to be a steadfast source of support to his students?he always responds to email, telephone, or post-its stuck to lobbed medicine balls. His programs take the holistic route to health by emphasizing nutrition in addition to exercise, providing consultations and take-home resources for clients.