Sunlight filters through the windows of Core Essence Yoga?s loft-style studio, reflecting off the rare patch of hardwood floor that remains uncovered by a colorful yoga mat. Stretch-induced groans escape the lips of students as they lift their legs high into the air or arch their backs and touch their palms to the floor behind them. The studio?s instructors?all of whom are registered yoga teachers and many of whom have achieved 200-hour certifications in their chosen style?look on approvingly and illustrate subsequent poses with their own lithe bodies.
The above scene typifies the classes offered at Core Essence Yoga, a studio on the east side of town that caters to beginners and experienced yogis alike. Music diffuses throughout the semi-heated room during Slow Flow classes that introduce new students to the Vinyasa style with gentle movements and focused breathing techniques. Instructors crank up the thermostat for advanced Power Vinyasa classes, which establish stronger ties between breath and movement and experiment with challenging poses such as arm inversions and downward-facing octopuses. Muscles strained during these sweat-inducing sessions regain their vitality during relaxing Thai bodywork. An ancient form of bodywork that draws on the collected wisdom of 2,500 years, Thai bodywork balances the body?s energy channels, releases emotional blocks, and evaporates stresses.
Aquarium maintenance might seem like a strange background for an expert in neuromuscular therapy and deep-tissue massage, but that's exactly how massage therapist Lynne Luckow got her start. She decided to change careers after reading about the health benefits of massage and went on to study anatomy, physiology, and medical massage at Aesthetics University. She opened Healing Hands Therapy Center in 1993 and continued her training with renowned professionals in the field of alternative medicine. Eventually, she grew her practice to the point where she was working 12 hours a day, six days a week, roughly the amount of time it takes to give a full-body massage to a really big whale. Luckow knew it was time to expand: the center is now home to eight highly trained massage therapists, who earned it nominations in CityVoter's Best Massage category in 2011.
In addition to performing massages, Luckow promotes physical and emotional healing with Ayurvedic counseling and meditation. She has further rounded out her team with licensed acupuncturist Brenda Sherman, who holds a Master of Science in acupuncture and oriental medicine.
As a personal trainer certified by the American Council on Exercise and a licensed massage therapist, Chris Aiello, Jr., has a thorough knowledge of the human body. He created Workout Boss as a facility where clients can tap into his expertise to address issues related to health, posture, and injury all in one place. He chats with patrons during personal-training sessions, encouraging them while blending cardio and a range of exercises in a gym with free weights, cable machines, kettlebells, and punching bags. On massage tables, therapists employ specialized techniques such as myofascial release and lymphatic drainage, which aim to straighten postural irregularities and detoxify muscles, and utilize deep-tissue massage to ease pain from sports or other injuries. The trainer also draws on a stock of recipes and nutritional advice to help clients augment workout plans and shed inches.
In 1994, Jill Seebantz began her career as a massage therapist and, for years, she would alleviate chronic-and-acute pain with everything from deep-tissue massage to craniosacral therapy. She began her sessions by analyzing the client's posture and then would work to remove any distortions that had developed in the body. Eventually she would customize a maintenance program for the client.
In time, Jill discovered that she wanted to help clients find total-body wellness, so she returned to her studies and is now a holistic health coach and colon hydrotherapist. She also turned her one-woman massage studio into Body Awareness Center, a place that?like Jill?focuses on overall wellness. The holistic health center improves wellness with custom therapeutic bodywork and acupuncture, detoxification treatments, and body-movement services.
Asian-inspired folding fans and hand-painted cherry blossoms adorn the walls of Options Salon & Spa, a destination for hair, body, and skin services available six days a week. To create silky smooth locks, the resident stylists reach for KeraCare and Paul Mitchell products as well as natural-looking extensions, which are intricately sewn, fused, or braided into the hair. During exfoliating body scrubs, aestheticians massage epidermises with a sea-salt or sugar mixture, which is blended with aromatic scents such as rose or cranberry pomegranate. The crew also caters to male clientele with personalized spa packages that include a men’s facial, an all-natural mani-pedi, a deep-tissue massage, and an optional celebratory chest bump.
Whether they're designing new hairstyles or clarifying skin, the team at Capricio Salon and Spa relies on top-shelf salon and spa products. Redken, Davines, Moroccanoil, and Brazilian Blowout are a few of the name-brand products staffers sprinkle over clients during their signature hair services, such as cuts, color treatments, and formal updos. When performing skin treatments, they use Dermalogica products, which omit common irritants, such as lanolin, alcohol, and artificial colors.