One has been a martial artist for more than 35 years; the other has been a bus driver for almost as long. Instructors at Lakeview Yoga and Wellness Center, Vidal Bitton and Joyce MacFarlane know what it's like to balance a busy schedule with the demands of staying healthy. Vidal's approach to yoga incorporates his knowledge of tae kwon do, hapkido, and tai chi, especially as to how physical exertion can lead to painful injury. Joyce also practices yoga with a mind toward healing—her years behind the wheel of a school bus have resulted in several spinal injuries. By juggling a demanding job that can take physical tolls, Joyce's empathy and spirit shine through in each class she teaches.
Along with the other instructors, Vidal and Joyce bring their distinct backgrounds to hot and power yoga classes that strengthen muscles and boost flexibility. The mind and spirit are considered just as vital; on-staff wellness practitioners augment the effects of yoga with services such as massage, acupuncture, personal training, and therapy.
Dirk Dahl discovered the joy of ceramics in high school when his artistic nature immediately took to the elegant accidents and random, dramatic shapes even a beginner could coax from clay. Ceramics became the bread and butter of his long artistic career, but—like many artists—he found his studio confining, and sought a way to interact with more people. That's when he decided to start teaching, an exercise that compelled him to create Dahl Arts Ceramic Studio as a way to introduce people to his beloved ceramic arts.
"Every time I teach a class or workshop, I learn something," remarks Dirk. Watching his students experiment for the first time or hundredth time in one of his many classes or workshops inspires the sculptor to experiment in his own work, from sculpting faces into pottery to reassembling the broken shards of old pieces into Frankenstein's flatware. The results have landed his work in international juried and invitation exhibitions and even allowed him to open his own personal gallery in Santa Monica, California.
Gary Olson taught martial arts, trained in meditation, and worked as a musician for much of his life, but the only discipline that allowed him to combine those passions was yoga. These mediums inform the sequences at The Ashram Yoga, which take structure from his martial-arts training, incorporate mindfulness from his meditative practices, and flow from his music career. He and a vast team of instructors lead seven styles of yoga, ranging from Hot Power Yoga and Classic Bikram Yoga in the hot room to the meditative Yin and playful Yang classes in the warm room.
They also teach kids' yoga classes on weekends that introduce wee ones to postures with fun movements. They strive to boost kiddos? self-discipline and self-esteem and help them productively cope with the stresses of school and tax season for their lemonade stands.
In addition to yoga classes, The Ashram Yoga regularly holds Deva Meditation training sessions and workshops that encourage clients to develop personal meditative practices.
Joe Lavin, a licensed massage therapist, and Wendy Lavin, a licensed physical therapist, combined their anatomical knowledge to develop the Power of Touch Workshop. The aim of the couples-focused workshop is to foster a lifelong affinity for massage, letting participants both practice massage techniques and experience massage benefits at the hands of their partner. With a low student-to-teacher ratio, sessions promise adequate individual attention and an intimate environment in which to knead away knots and loosen spines. After the workshop, students not only come away with a deeper appreciation for massage and joints looser than a broken door handle, but they also receive lifetime access to Power of Touch?s alumni area, a network of massage resources that includes videos, articles, and additional workshops.
Vision Quest Sport and Fitness promotes a five-pronged approach to fitness, covering cardiovascular, progressive resistance, proper diet, supplementation, and personal training. Like any decent clock factory, the clubs are open 24 hours a day, and each keeps its own schedule primed with group classes such as boxing, yoga, spinning, and hip-hop fitness. Body Sculpt sessions fashion forms with weights and bands, and Total Body Conditioning uses lighter weights and higher repetitions to create lean, mean muscle mass.
Members take part in complimentary wellness seminars from fitness experts to fine-tune their bodies, and teams of affiliated massage therapists, chiropractors, and nutrition gurus save skeletons and muscles from harmful injury.
An active Denver photographer since 1985, Bart Levy imparts hard-won wisdom to aspiring photographers in upbeat, three-hour workshop. In these workshops, the seasoned shutterbug demystifies DSLR cameras other adjustable digital cameras', teaching pupils how to harness ISO speeds, manual settings, shutter speeds and apertures to produce crisp, memorable images of lens caps. Students also learn how to compose visually striking snapshots and Bart will also demonstrate the differences in digital file formats, so acolytes can upload and share pictures without setting their web browsers on fire.