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.
Jennifer Buergermeister is very flexible. She not only moves from job to job—she's an entrepreneur, independent filmmaker, spiritual healer, and app designer—but also from pose to pose while teaching yoga. She has created two yoga DVDs and has a third coming out in November. She's also the owner of Jennyoga, where she works with a deep bench of fellow yoga teachers, offering a variety of classes for all levels. These include Sunrise and Awakening, Hatha Flow, and Deep Relaxation and Restorative yoga classes.
The team at Jennyoga strives to make coming to the studio easy. They built a Jennyoga app for mobile devices that allows students to schedule classes on the fly. And they run an in-house store, where visitors can pick up any yoga gear they might need before heading into one of the studios. They even made a short film to inspire attendance, a sort of narrative commercial about the beneficial effects of yoga in our noisy, modern world where neighbors rev motorcycle engines and fire alarms scream in delight whenever you get home.
Some believe that you must leave home before you can truly find yourself. The teachers at Yoga House Houston didn't just leave their homes to find themselves—they left their native country, traveling across the globe to India, Malaysia, Indonesia, and Jamaica to learn, practice, and master the ancient art of yoga. They impart the wisdom they've gleaned from their journeys within a building whose exterior resembles the clay walls of a Spanish mission. Atop dark hardwood floors, they lead students through Hatha, Ashtanga, Vinyasa, hot yoga, and spine-aligning Kemetic yoga, aiming to help yogis sculpt long, lean muscles, improve endurance, and calm fidgety spirit animals.
Joy Yoga Center's instructors guide students through Vinyasa-style flowing yoga sessions that focus on strengthening bodies and clearing minds. The team of 12 instructors holds classes seven days a week for students of all skill levels, including regular sessions tailored for runners and early-morning risers.
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.
Barefoot students sway to the music, moving their arms rhythmically, punctuating the flow every so often with martial-arts-style punches and kicks across the sprung wood floor. The low-impact, low-pressure practice nourishes the body, mind, and spirit alike—as co-owner Helen Tracy told Great Day Houston, “I fell in love with my body through Nia.” The instructors at NiaMoves specialize in Nia’s aerobic workouts, in addition to an eclectic assortment of other group fitness classes. The instructors lead students in everything from body-stretching and mind-calming yoga sessions to aerobic hoop-dance workouts. Many of the classes are holistically refreshing, including the healing drum-and-dance-circle sessions, which begin with a tension-relieving meditation session. Instructor Emilia then leads students in expressing themselves through movement and thumping drum beats, both of which are effective during most job interviews.
Pearland Bikram Yoga sculpts and slims bodies and clears cluttered minds with authentic Bikram yoga classes, all offered in a 105-degree studio designed to improve circulation, prevent injury, rapidly burn fat, and detoxify the body. In each 90-minute class, passionate instructors guide students through two repetitions of the 26 Bikram postures, including the half-moon, eagle, and cobra, which can only be done after the yogi places students in a giant basket. All instructors have completed an intensive nine-week, 500-hour certification course with Bikram Choudhury, Bikram yoga’s creator. Classes generally have 25 to 30 students, but the studio can accommodate up to 70. The environs are professionally cleaned and sterilized to eliminate bacteria and gain an edge against increasingly flexible germs.