With machines set up in rows to encourage competition, many ordinary gyms cater to men's bodies and psychology, right down to the urinals that were "accidentally" installed in the women's locker room. At Curves, fitness frontierswomen move around a circuit of hydraulic-resistance machines that have been designed to work with women's bodies and promote weight loss, protect against osteoporosis, and deal with arthritis.
A specialist in jaw orthopedics and orthodontics, Dr. Robert Hering founded Fox Valley Dental on the quest for sturdy jaws and straight bites. Since 1975, he has corrected maxillofacial flaws through more than 600 TMJ cases and 4,000 orthodontics cases, working both with traditional braces and Invisalign aligners. For those plagued by sleep apnea, he helps clear breathing pathways with mouthpieces that are easy to hide in a spouse's sandwich.
Dr. Hering’s office design betrays his fondness for the outdoors. Row upon row of windows throw the waiting room open to natural light, which falls upon rustic wooden fixtures. The operatory's French doors look out over a lawn enclosed in shrubbery, where woodland creatures find privacy to pick bits of acorn from their braces.
• For $42, you get five consecutive days of 5:30 a.m. boot-camp classes for women (a $74.75 value), a 14-day meal guide (a $20 value), and a pre-camp health assessment (a $20 value; a $119.75 total value). • For $42, you get four consecutive days of 5:15 p.m. coed boot-camp classes (a $59.80 value), a 14-day meal guide (a $20 value), and a pre-camp health assessment (a $20 value; a $104.80 total value).
Although much of Eternal Spring Natural Health Center's mission centers around the notion that healing comes from inside the individual, the practice is equally committed to putting its imprint on the well-being of its community. The center's licensed acupuncturists work on an honor fee, the goal of which is to better make their services available to a larger group of people. The center's other specialties include nutrition, chiropractic and massage treatments, and they offer private lessons that focus on yoga qi gong, meditation work, and learning how to breath in the void of outer space—which is where one can end up during effective meditation. Eternal Spring’s Todd Shulfer earned his doctor of chiropractic degree from Palmer College of Chiropractic, and Leola Jacobi has a bachelor’s degree in nutrition as well as a master’s in oriental medicine from the Midwest College of Oriental Medicine in Racine.
CClark Pilates Studio owner Cathy Clark has been an instructor of classical Pilates for a decade, and in 2011, she was voted Fitness Instructor of the Year at the University of Utah for her work at the school. Now the head of her own facility, Cathy continues to teach classical Pilates during small-group classes held throughout the week. Her studio is equipped for both mat and equipment classes, and three days per week she offers a Pilates Express session in the afternoon for busy professionals.
Natural light spills through a large window in Inspire Yoga's practice space to warm and illuminate students as they balance on bare feet and gracefully sweep poses. These students work their way through the studio's four signature classes, which offer challenges for newcomers and experienced practitioners alike. Beginners often start with Spark, mastering the foundations of vinyasa flow with poses that can even challenge those already familiar with yoga. Renew's slow-flow hatha postures also lay the groundwork for further practice, letting students stretch away tension and boost flexibility.
Inspire Yoga's schedule also includes Empower and Inspire, two classes that showcase the movement-based vinyasa tradition. Empower builds upon the foundations learned in lower-level classes, equipping students to transition between intermediate and advanced poses. The studio's most advanced class, Inspire challenges even seasoned students, integrating breathing exercises, physically challenging poses, and mind-centering meditations into a single practice.
In addition to hosting classes seven days a week, Inspire Yoga also brings workshops and advanced training events to the community, hosts private small-group sessions, and offers life coaching.