J-Mike has always loved sports and fitness, and when an injury ended his college-baseball career, he was able to shift gears and received an education in fitness training. Today, he leads individuals and small groups through intense strength and cardio training in his indoor gym, challenging students to complete difficult, but scalable, boot-camp classes.
Dahn Yoga integrates Korean Taoist philosophies and holistic Korean Oriental medicine into a form of yoga that strives to forge stronger connections between mind and body. The certified instructors at Dahn Yoga adhere to these ancient practices and help students of all ages and fitness levels develop core strength, which, according to Dahn philosophy, is the basis of physical, mental, and spiritual health. Through classes, private lessons, and workshops, students learn to link postures with breath control, ultimately developing greater bodily awareness. Besides improving flexibility, strength, and posture, instructors also emphasize the brain's role in overall well-being. They lead brain exercises that challenge and sharpen the mind to develop more productive habits and levitate pennies out of mall fountains.
Dahn Yoga's founder, Ilchi Lee, also built a comprehensive brain-development program—called Brain Education—from the principles upon which Dahn Yoga is founded. Combining physical, emotional, and cognitive exercises with guided imagery and games, Dahn Yoga's instructors develop emotional control, improve communication between the brain's hemispheres, and inspire guests take decisive action. This program has five progressive steps that can be applied to a dedicated yoga practice as well as everyday life.
In addition to being the owner of Pure Body Studio, Heather Erdmann is a self-proclaimed "body mechanics problem solver." The designation is more than just a clever reference to the fact that torsos look like sideways minus signs—Erdmann studied physical therapy and body work, then began applying her knowledge to Pilates and Safe Spine techniques. The result: she helps her clients improve their posture, recover from injuries, and reduce chronic pain, all while boosting their overall physical condition.
Within a wood-floored studio jam-packed with exercise balls and resistance machines, certified trainers Amanda Kemp-Grant and Caroline Soul work to create a welcoming atmosphere where students of all shapes and sizes can work toward their goals of losing weight, toning up, or figuring out the location to Joseph Pilates' hidden treasure. The duo combine their wealth of experience—which collectively includes backgrounds in Pilates, yoga, spinning, body building, and a bouquet of other modalities—to craft and helm a selection of dynamic classes that includes mat-based Pilates, machine-based Pilates, indoor cycling, and ballet-inspired barre.
24 Hour Fitness keeps its doors open day and night so members can sculpt bodies and fitness goals on their own time with a potpourri of group classes, cardio equipment, free weights, athletic courts, and an indoor-lap pool. Armed with a 30-day membership to the recently opened Houston Rice Village Club, gym-goers kick off fresh workout routines with a complimentary fitness orientation filled with advice from personal trainers on health goals, how to use equipment, and how to interpret nightmares of being chased by dumbbells. Add fresh layers of physicality with TRX suspension-training equipment before playing a round in the racquetball court or letting sneakers squeak out healthful sonnets on the practice basketball court. Members can sign up for an array of group fitness classes, including yoga, Zumba, and Les Mills workouts ranging from martial-arts-inspired body combat to RPM, which pairs thumping beats with a stationary bike ride through imaginary mountains and ethereal monsoons. Cap off workouts by ducking into the sauna or taking one final lap in the whirlpool.
As a personal trainer, Shirley Schuppenhauer likes to keep students guessing, tossing out a variety of workout options and letting them decide what fits. Her husband Lee is also serious about fitness, leading classes while training for an upcoming Ironman. Together, they head the diverse team of certified trainers at Elite FX Studios. Throughout the 8,000-square-foot facility, exercisers sweat their way through blistering boot camp classes or personal training sessions. Students bounce from spinning and aerobic exercise to tickling fast-twitch muscles with dumbbells, Bosu balls, and cast-iron feathers. Elite FX Studios also offers a specialized Girls Club boot camp, where ladies master kickboxing punches and kettlebell swings.
At Katy Fit Body Bootcamp, experienced instructors keep body muscles and brain muscles engaged with constant challenges. Over the course of a single session, participants may run, jump, lift weights, slam out pushups and chin-ups, or tackle addictions to standing still. Because Fit Body allows each participant to work at his or her own pace, all attendees can break a sweat without feeling the heat of competition. Consult the class schedule to find a 45-minute window that doesn’t conflict with trips to the offworld colonies.