At each of its 31 area locations, the YMCA of Greater Houston pursues a mission to bring health, wellness, and personal growth to communities. Kids leap into activities ranging from swim lessons and youth sports to a teen Youth & Government program that stirs up confidence and leadership abilities in students, preparing them for mudslinging student-council campaigns.
Zumba, ballroom dance, and Les Mills group exercise classes shake up adult workout routines, as complimentary childcare frees up parents to pursue fitness goals. Meanwhile, adult sport leagues such as basketball and racquetball result in friendly competition and hyper-literate team names inspired by obscure philosophers.
Texas Boot Camp Fitness's certified trainers fortify physiques with an ever-shifting compendium of exercises performed in an outdoor setting. Attendees of all fitness levels sprint and jump toward fitness goals, lifting their own body weight when performing pushups, chin-ups, and acts of levitation. Arms hoist weights, resistance bands stretch between partners, and friendly competitions reveal hidden stores of stamina and strength. Pushing beyond pure leadership of boot-camp classes, instructors supplement workouts with nutritional guidance and lifestyle advice. In the interest of safe and easy mirroring, coaches emphasize clean technique rather than speed or the benefits of cloning.
Performance Pilates and its striking, fully equipped studio are helmed by Cody Robbins and Michelle Haver, both seasoned instructors with certifications from Peak Pilates. At the studio, students slowly adapt to the core-strengthening rigors of Pilates during beginners classes, before moving up to more challenging mixed-level mat classes and equipment classes that utilize reformers, cadillac towers, chairs, and barrels.?These small-group classes offer individualized attention and increased odds of learning everyone's name, but instructors also lead one-on-one sessions for those who desire additional direction in their practice.
With Awakened Yoga's diverse selection of body-bending classes, yogis of all abilities can strengthen their bodies, ease their minds, and nurture their spirits. The schedule offers multiple classes each day that vary in style. Yoga 101 helps beginners build the foundation for their practice, and the sweat-inducing cardio and core class offers an effective workout that emphasizes toning the abs, back, and hips. Some classes, such as the rigorous Vinyasa flow, are heated to 85 degrees and warm muscles into pliable, fibrous putty, making them easier to twist and pull into various animal shapes at birthday parties.
Chris Green's passion for basketball has led him from the courts of his high school to the major arenas where he played with the ABA West All-Star Team. Though he was bestowed with many awards and accomplishments throughout his career, Green realized that his life's calling was not with basketball, but with helping people improve their lives through fitness. Eager to use his athletic talents to make a difference, he graduated with a degree in kinesiology and became certified in personal training through the International Sports and Science Association.
Today, Green combines the athletic prowess he cultivated on the basketball court with a positive, yet intense style of training during six-week boot camp programs, personal training sessions, and motivational coaching sessions. Dedicated to propelling students towards their fitness goals?whether those goals include losing weight, toning muscle, or squeezing into child-sized giraffe costumes?he supplements training sessions with regular motivational videos. Green also conducts regular self-improvement seminars on nutrition and body image.
Stroller Strides puts an athletic twist on parent-child bonding time, as baby-filled strollers are integrated into one-hour cardio and toning classes. The program is the brainchild of Lisa Druxman, a pre- and postnatal-fitness guru who also exclusively writes the "Mompreneur" column in Entrepreneur magazine. In addition to creating the now nationally practiced fitness program, Lisa has also shared her expertise in her book L.E.A.N. Mommy and in award-winning fitness articles.
As their parents take part in a health-centric activity, little ones also benefit from the social aspect of spending time with other children that share a similar interest in hedge-fund investments. Stroller Strides suggests toting babies that are at least six weeks old, but welcomes kids of any age that enjoy carriage-riding to accompany their parent or caregiver.