Founded in 1893, Sheltering Arms Senior Services has devoted more than a century to providing Houston’s elderly population with care, advocacy, and community support. Despite its long history, the nonprofit organization is only looking forward. Between 2011 and 2012, it provided seniors with 128,658 hours of personal-care assistance—including meal preparation and housekeeping—and fed 2,182 seniors a nutritious meal. And their specially designed Adult Day Center, which provides top-notch care for individuals with Alzheimer’s disease, recently celebrated its 20th anniversary. Factor in the organization's more than 20 Houston-area senior centers, where staffers offer recreational activities, health education, and legal advocacy, and it is clear that Sheltering Arms is only building upon its 120-year foundation.
Sheltering Arms' mission begins with its committed corps of staff members and volunteers. Certified nurses’ aides customize and implement home-care plans that include light housekeeping, meal prep, and medication reminders. Social workers advocate for members at risk of being institutionalized by managing their financial and health casework. Volunteers make daily safety checks on seniors who are living alone and organize arts-and-crafts classes, game nights, and dances.
Tranquil Waters Spa combines the refreshing powers of a day spa with the healing prowess of a wellness center to create a haven of whole body well-being. Specialists keep exteriors shiny and new with aesthetic treatments that range from traditional facials and AHA chemical peels to aromatherapy and bath-salt treatments. Resident therapist Dr. Lew Huff flaunts holistic regimens focused on treating the root cause of ailments and not just their symptoms through painless acupuncture, chiropractic care, hypnotherapy, and nutritional counseling. A multidisciplinary assessment can also help determine the path to wellness as a slew of specialists—such as acupuncturists, structural therapists, and aromatherapists—heal from every angle like a Neosporin hot tub. Meanwhile, the Phoenix Massage Therapy School in Houston unleashes its students inside the spa to learn a range of massage modalities, as its interns—all of whom have completed at least half the hours required to become professional spa experts—bring their newly acquired skills to the treatment table.
AV Flight Simulations' director of operations, Kevin Gabriel, is an experienced pilot, and even he would agree that not everything about contemporary flight training is perfect. Enter the Redbird FMX flight simulator, an FAA-approved advanced aviation-training device with lifelike motions, controls, and graphics. Inside the simulator, students and AV Flight Simulations' certified instructors can freeze situations in real time, giving them the opportunity to analyze problems as they occur. These issues could range from being in a skewed holding pattern to the plane joining a flock of migrating birds. This advanced simulator training can also be a more cost-effective alternative to traditional flight schools on account of rising fuel costs and other expensive expenses. Though students will have to helm a plane eventually, simulators help them get certified with various lessons, including instrument rating, proficiency, and practical tests.
Dance shouldn’t be formulaic. That’s why at Studio Tropa, owner Jerry Maese leads a dynamic, multi-cultural team of dance instructors that help students build better bodies. Six days a week students rock and rollick to sultry Tropa international sessions and the Latin-inspired grooves of Zumba classes. Instructors also get pulses racing with Tropa funk, their self-devised take on hip-hop. Students are encouraged to bring water, wear comfortable clothing, and sport athletic shoes that have good arch support and aren’t covered in Vaseline. Studio Tropa was recently selected to be a part of a promotional video release in conjunction with the release of the film, The Great Gatsby and was also part of the Galleria Mall flashmob for the release of the Zumba Rush Xbox Kinect video game.
When Joan Barnes founded Gymboree Play & Music in 1976, she envisioned a facility where parents and children could play together in a safe and age-appropriate environment. In the following decades, Gymboree Play & Music spread to more than 30 countries across the globe, helping youngsters from infants to 5 years old develop cognitive, physical, and social skills. The company's instructors lead classes such as Play & Learn, its flagship course, in which parents and kids move through a seven-level program filled with storytelling, play activities, and debates on the merits of sandwich crust. Talented staffers also prep youngsters for school and foster development in areas such as music, art, and sports. Throughout all classes, they make use of custom play equipment designed by acclaimed playground designer and seesaw-tamer Jay Beck.
At Resurrection Fitness Studio, the staff takes an all-inclusive approach to fitness, working patrons' bodies while nurturing their minds to help them lead an overall healthier lifestyle. Their dynamic boot-camp classes challenge students' brawn with an array of training methods, including circuit training, cardio work, and core exercises. They complement these sessions with stress-relieving sessions of meditation to soothe tension more effectively than lying on a beach as a peaceful manatee brushes your hair. Patrons can work up a sweat while exercising their dance moves in line-dancing classes and Zumba sessions, which set easy-to-follow dance steps to pulsing Latin-inspired beats. In addition to catering their classes to patrons of all fitness levels, they also offer specialty classes for seniors and the visually impaired.