When horses are born they often wobble on new legs, building enough strength to trot and canter within a matter of hours. "Their mother doesn't whisper in their ear, 'You're an English horse'," says Dave Konefal, owner of Lone Star Horsemanship, Inc. He trains horses for Western- and English-style riding with a process that he says requires time, patience, and a sense of humor.
Dave often spends weeks with his horses, using conditioned-response training methods to keep them calm and ready for unexpected situations. He excites them gradually and calms them down so that they don't throw riders when scared by something like a backfiring engine or a fluctuating 401(k). He likens the process to pumping a car's brakes on an icy surface, adding, "You have to practice in hazardous situations so you don't wreck." Safety is definitely a priority for the trainer, and it is something that he carries through into riding lessons with his students.
Dave takes on pupils of all ages, and many of them, like the newborn horses, gain confidence rapidly. One rider brought in her great-grandfather, who grew up on a farm but hadn't ridden in decades. The man rode as though he'd never stopped,his wife following close behind andfretting happily at him. The trainer works to keep each lesson within the rider's abilities. "The hardest part about riding is the ground," he says, but he focuses on minimizing the risk of injury by knowing his steeds. Proof of his bond with the equines can be seen on occasions when he is found on his 20-acre ranch, dozing under the stars with a half-ton horse offering its shoulder as a pillow.
Combining the personal touch of an optometrist-owned practice with the affordable pricing offered at optical superstores, Today's Vision helps keep customers' eyesight crystal clear. Pooling their resources under the Today's Vision aegis, the independent operators that own each location are able to offer personalized care while taking advantage of large-scale discounts on lenses, LASIK eye surgeries, and novelty eye charts that are printed all fuzzy-like. Those looking for fetching frames can browse through extensive selections from such purveyors as Oakley, De Rigo, and Liz Claiborne.
Star Pool School’s knowledgeable instructors lead students of all ages and skill levels through the ins and outs of aquatic aptitude in a private, one-on-one setting. Teachers customize each lesson according to students’ abilities, needs, and goals. Budding Olympians plunge into a heated indoor pool to learn water-skimming skills including different swimming styles and how to bribe a starfish into giving up his floaties. Competitive training for more experienced students sharpens stroke techniques, ensuring swimmers can perform proper moves. Before jumping into the water, students can suit up in on-site locker rooms, and the climate-controlled facilities allow paddling practices to continue throughout the year. Lessons can be scheduled during the times listed here.
Drawing on more than 20 years of experience in the industry, the trainers of Legacy Equine Academy strive to instill core values of compassion, patience, and teamwork in each of their students. They lead classes for all ages in both English and Western riding styles, from beginners all the way up to AA show-riders. They dedicate themselves to teaching all aspects of horsemanship, using rainy days as a chance to show students how to clean tack, wrap injuries, entertain horses so they don't get cabin fever. When they're not teaching classes, the instructors lead pony birthday parties, summer camps, and programs for Girl Scouts and Cub Scouts.
A full-service healthcare and wellness practice formerly known as InterFit, RediClinic pairs licensed nurse practitioners and physician assistants with patients seeking services ranging from physicals and vaccinations to cosmetic consultations and diabetes testing. Typically found inside retail stores, RediClinics don't require any appointments, making walk-in service as seamless as the plot of most Newhart fan fiction. In addition to preventive services, RediClinic has also expanded its services into the realms of proactive health, promoting wellness with weight-loss counseling and programs to help patients stop smoking.
Analyte Health's staff of certified phlebotomists works to prevent the spread of sexually transmitted diseases by offering affordable screening to patients at more than 30 Houston-area locations. The FDA-approved and CLIE-certified test scans blood and urine samples for eight sexually transmitted diseases, including chlamydia, gonorrhea, hepatitis B and C, herpes I and II, HIV, and syphilis. Within 72 hours, patients receive their confidential test results on a secure website or via e-mail, with the promise that Analyte Health will never share them with a third party. If necessary, fully trained doctors and medical professionals are on hand to discuss treatment options.