For more than 20 years, Carrie Heller's life has been a balancing act between honing her circus talents and helping others. Today, the licensed clinical social worker, a founding member of the American Youth Circus Organization, blends therapy methods with big-top techniques at the Circus Arts Institute, benefiting children and adults alike with mind- and body-benefiting acrobatics that send students swinging, twirling, and laughing through the air.
Carrie and her team of instructors acquaint students with circus-performance fundamentals using the trapeze, tight wire, Spanish web, and juggling balls. They bolster core and upper-body strength during Circus Arts Fitness workouts, which have been featured on CNN for their exciting approach to toning. For students with special needs, such as sensory challenges or ADD, they host Circus Arts Therapy classes. These sessions channel playful and positive energy as small groups learn to navigate circus equipment, enhancing their confidence, social skills, and physical coordination in a much more natural way than going on a handstand speed date.
In the year 2000, after hundreds of hours of yoga practice, workshops, and conferences, Tanya Edwards's hard work culminated in the opening of her very own studio, Art of Yoga. And today, alongside her team of certified yoga teachers, Tanya helps practitioners of all experience levels build strong bodies and sound minds with an eclectic teaching style grounded in the Hatha yoga tradition. The serene, sage-colored studio heats up to a balmy 95 degrees during hot yoga, a 90-minute routine of stretching and sweating that encourages the body to expel harmful toxins, such as liquefied body parts of T-1000. Other class styles include a gentler restorative class, an intense core-centric yoga class, and a Bollywood fusion class that infuses low-impact Eastern dances with Western fitness techniques.
The YMCA is a cause-driven organization that is for youth development, for healthy living and for social responsibility. That?s because a strong community can only be achieved when we invest in our kids, our health and our neighbors. All of our YMCA of Coastal Georgia locations embody these three values so that everyone regardless of age, gender or income is given the opportunity to learn, grow and thrive at the Y. With a variety of group fitness classes ranging from Zumba to family fit nights, spin classes to TRX and everything in between, you?re sure to find what you?re looking for at the YMCA! Our staff pumps up adult fitness regimens with aquatic fitness and boot-camp classes, basketball courts, personal-training sessions and so much more. We?ve also filled our fitness centers with free weights, cardio equipment, and weight machines. When they?re not helping adults trim down waistlines during Brazilian-jujitsu, cycling, and aerobics classes, staff members are getting back in touch with their inner children. They stimulate imagination, mental development, and growth as they lead children?s day camps, after-school programs, and numerous sports offerings.
To weather his career as a master sergeant and a decorated Special Forces combat veteran, Shihan Randy McElwee needed a solid grasp on combat maneuvers. Nowadays, the retired McElwee teaches the pragmatic self-defense skills that got him through battle at his martial-arts studio, American Black Belt Academy. The school specializes in the official hand-to-hand combat system of the US military: Gracie Brazilian jujitsu. The system’s standing and ground moves harness leverage to take on larger opponents as well as help participants neutralize surprise attacks. For a broader focus, students can opt for an integrated martial-arts fitness workout, which combines jujitsu with muay thai kickboxing and Japanese shotokan karate. Regardless of their specificity, all of the studio’s classes enhance focus, self-confidence, and courage when the laundry room’s light goes out.
At Formwell, owners Rami and Heather Odeh and Andy Berman keep their mission focused on personal training by seeking out credentialed trainers—including elite trainers who have worked at Formwell for at least five years and who possess a combination of a master’s degree in exercise science and advanced training certification. Throughout the indoor and outdoor facilities, they lead clients through tailored workouts that may incorporate traditional fitness equipment, such as free weights and cardio machines. They may also draw upon alternative exercises, such as lifts on Olympic rings, kettlebell swings, and tug-o-war with a horse.
Beyond personal training, Formwell’s team leads partner training and small-group classes, such as CrossFit, plus a weight-loss program that extends to nutritional education. Tiled bathrooms with showers let guests transition between work and the gym, and a children’s room entertains young ones with a television, DVD player, and video games.
With a PhD in nursing from the University of Wisconsin at Milwaukee, registered nurse Carol Dean Baker understands that wellness involves more than getting a physical every year. That’s why, in addition to her nursing practice, she helms PureBalance, a yoga studio dedicated to building a health-oriented community.
The studio’s eclectic offerings range from Vinyasa sessions in an 85-degree room to basic Hatha classes focusing on breath work and meditation. Flexibility-enhancing sessions emphasize deep, slow stretches of major muscle groups, and condensed classes pack a full course’s punch into just 45 minutes without resorting to cheap time savers such as eliminating the exhalation portion of each breath.