Green Yoga House offers prospective pretzels an abundance of stretch sessions, from pre- and post-natal to hot Vinyasa, inside its two spacious studios in Clive and West Des Moines, as well as lunchtime yoga classes in the skywalk on Grand Avenue. Owner Lily Hou has been practicing yoga for 14 years and teaching since 2003, and was voted the Best Yoga Instructor in Des Moines by Cityview in 2009. Learn bendy basics at the West Des Moines location, mastering foundational poses, breathing techniques, and meditation practices. Build body and mind muscle at the Clive location by bringing hand weights to the Yoga with Weights class, designed to increase strength and endurance while generating energy flow, improving balance, and moisturizing parched yoga mats.
Fitness World West has been trimming Iowa's waistlines since 1986. Its three modern, fully equipped facilities hold more than 75 weekly fitness classes, an aquatic program accredited by the Arthritis Foundation, and advanced strength equipment from Hammer, Cybex, and Paramount. During the diverse lineup of fitness classes, the gym's trainers pump up their students' motivation with rigorous, varying workouts that include Zumba, yoga, cross training, and Greco-Roman spelling bees. For one-on-one instruction, personal trainers work with clients to design fitness plans that optimize results, taking advantage of the center’s cushioned track and the cardio theater's elliptical machines, cross trainers, bikes, and treadmills. When working out solo, clients can set brainwaves to one of 80 channels broadcasting from the cardio machines' personal flat-screen TVs, jogging or biking along to motivational music videos, athletic competitions, or home-shopping auctions. The gym’s selection of Olympic free weights stands ready to fatigue muscles before the whirlpool, sauna, or steam room relieves and relaxes deep-rooted aches.
In addition to increasing clients’ physical prowess, Fitness World West's knowledgeable staff help overhaul the unhealthy habits of their clients through computerized fitness assessments and personalized nutrition consultations. And, during workouts, they welcome parents to entrust their children to the kids' gym and nursery, where an eagle-eyed staff member watches over little ones as they romp around or lead troops of G.I. Joe figurines in taxing pushup regimens.
Having taught high school band for well over 20 years, Roxianne Scott knows the importance of rhythm. She doesn't always need an instrument to explore the concept, however?at Harmony Yoga + Wellness, she showcases a type of music and movement that comes entirely from the human body. She and her staff lead yoga classes that encourage strength, flexibility, and self-awareness, regardless of your experience level. Some sessions, including Vinyasa and yoga for endurance athletes, embrace an intensive practice. Others move more slowly, incorporating elements of meditation or helping beginners to master the basic poses without giving them an extra leg to balance with.
The studio helps visitors to achieve calm outside of class, as well. Their resident massage therapist blends eastern and western modalities into muscle-soothing treatments, and a reiki master works to optimize clients' energy flow. Even if you simply feel like relaxing in the space, you can sip on some complimentary tea and browse the lounge's lending library, or peruse the apparel and locally made jewelry in the boutique.
Glaza Studio courses with movement. Live percussionists strike drums during Afro-Brazilian dance classes, hastening the tempo as students transition from warm-ups to folkloric dances. In capoeira sessions, teachers blend acrobatic and fight movements into a workout that makes the heart pound like Thumper's left hind foot. Some classes have a quieter personality. Vinyasa yoga, for instance, strings together a fluid sequence of movements. As participants transition from one pose to the next, they bridge the transition with calm, purposeful inhalations or exhalations. All classes take place in an expansive room that resembles a warehouse. Narrow planks of wood stretch across the floor, and rectangular beams brace the ceiling. Coating the walls, naturally distressed paint gives the space a historical vibe.
Studio owner Ryan Esdohr approaches power yoga with a background in sports medicine, leading invigorating and rejuvenating classes for all skill levels. As early as 5:30 a.m. on select mornings, Ryan gathers students in the heated studio space and guides them through a flowing sequence of powerful poses and invigorating transitions. The therapeutic heat loosens tightly wound limbs and spurs increased sweat, and the challenging workout leaves muscles feeling strong enough to squeeze magma out of a pumice stone.