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2011 Golden Teddy Winners: Family Health and Fitness

Jen Betterley

Published on: August 20, 2011


Best of Seattle: 8 Limbs Yoga Center

Moms' Fitness Program

Winner: 8 Limbs Yoga Center
8 Limbs Yoga Centers four Seattle locations make finding a nearby prenatal or postnatal yoga class easy as doing the lotus pose. Postnatal yoga classes include a check-in time, so parents can build community and focus on regaining strength and energy after childbirth. The centers also offer family yoga classes for when the baby gets bigger, including a parent/preschool class that includes stories and games.

The Bar Method, which has a location in Redmond and brand-new one in South Lake Union, seems to be the hottest thing going on the local fitness scene these days. We know moms who love it, saying it’s a great workout that kicks your butt into shape — quite literally.

Speaking of hot, Haute Yoga on Queen Anne gets kudos for its hot hatha and power vinyasa classes.

StrengthStudio on Capitol Hill offers small-group total body workout classes by a former elementary schoolteacher (she’s also a runner, aerobics instructor, former Crossfit athlete, a Zumba dance instructor and a BodyPump instructor) who knows how to keep you in line — in the best way.

Other finalists include West Seattle Pilates instructor Beth Montanez, and the Stroum Jewish Community Center on Mercer Island.


Best of Seattle: YMCA

Gym with Child Care

Winner: YMCA
The YMCA (many locations) is your very favorite spot to go when you want a workout but have kids in tow – kiddos can hang in the Adventure Zone and play (supervised, of course) while you get your sweat on. “My kids enjoy playing with other kids in their Adventure I get to enjoy two hours of workout time!” You call the Mukilteo branch “big, well-managed, and they know my kids,” and rave about the Northshore YMCA in Bothell: “They are amazing with kids. If the ratio of children goes up, then they bring another adult to help with the childcare. They are also the only gym that I am aware of that has experience with special needs, let alone autism.” The West Seattle Y rocks, too: “Kids are actively playing, not watching TV. Great teachers leading activities, reading stories.”

At 24 Hour Fitness (many locations), you can use the gym and “only see children going to and from.”

Ballard Health Club, located in an historic building in downtown Ballard, offers low-cost childcare for kids ages 6 weeks to 12 years old. The gym’s longtime childcare provider is a gem, according to you: “Mrs. Kuefler is awesome!”

Bellevue Club offers a wide variety of fitness and wellness activities -- including a spa -- and you can drop your child off while you swim or get a massage. “Great, safe and fun child care for our kids. They handle situations well (child conflicts) and make it enjoyable for the kids without just putting them in front of a video.”

Other finalists include Seattle Athletic Club and Stroum Jewish Community Center.


Best of Seattle: 8 Limbs Yoga Center

Family-Friendly Yoga Studio

Winner: 8 Limbs Yoga Center
Yoga’s great for little wigglers, who think some of the poses are silly and fun, and who develop strength, coordination and focus while they think they’re just having a good time. Your pick, 8 Limbs Yoga Centers (in four Seattle locations), offers yoga classes for parents and preschoolers for children ages 6-11, kids on their own, and girls ages 10-13.

Bikram Yoga in Everett offers a twice-monthly yoga class for kids (parents can watch from outside the studio).

Limber Yoga in West Seattle hosts a toddler open gym, family yoga classes (for kids ages 5-11) and kids’ summer camps.

Source Yoga of Tacoma offers pre- and post-natal yoga classes, and a “Wee Ones Yoga” class for ages 1 to 5.

Village Yoga, located in Seattle’s Magnolia neighborhood, offers yoga classes for kids ages 5 and up, tweens and teens.


Best of Seattle: Dr. Tracy Johanssen Obstetrician

Winners: Dr. Tracy Johanssen and Dr. Tiffany McDermott
Choosing an obstetrician is an important decision, and when you find a doc you like, you’re committed fans. Dr. Tracy Johannsen of Northwest Women’s Healthcare and Dr. Tiffany McDermott of the Polyclinic, both located in Seattle’s First Hill neighborhood, tied for first place. Of McDermott, who earned her degree from New Jersey Medical School and was a resident at Northwestern University, you say “funny, relaxed – she helps me stop worrying, which she knows is my thing…so thrilled to be under her care again.” Locally trained Dr. Johannsen (she completed her medical degree at the University of Washington School of Medicine and her training in OB/GYN at the University of Washington) has a “dry sense of humor” and is skilled at preparing couples for “the biggest change in our lives.”

Finalists include Dr. Akiko Kurachi of Salish Women’s Health in Seattle, Dr. Angela Chien of Evergreen Women’s Health Center in Kirkland (“She really cares”), Dr. Dana Blackham of North Seattle (“ His knowledge and experience are superb, and his calm manner is very comforting. Plus there is almost never a wait in his very friendly office”), Dr. Emily Norland of the Polyclinic in Seattle, and Dr. Kevin Pieper of Providence in Everett (“The kindest OB doc EVER!”).


Best of Seattle: Dr. Emmanuel EusebioPediatrician

Winner: Dr. Emmanuel Eusebio
You praised locally trained Dr. Emmanuel Eusebio of Pacific Medical Centers’ Northgate clinic for his great “bedside manner/smarts combo” and like his dedication to his patients and their families. Eusebio received his education at the University of Washington and trained at Seattle Children’s. He’s a board-certified pediatrician.

PacMed clearly rallied its fans for this category. Voters cited Dr. Akiko Hall of the Canyon Park clinic, calling her “compassionate,” “smart” and “professional.” Dr. Hall was educated at the University of California, San Francisco, and trained at Seattle Children’s. She’s a board-certified pediatrician.

Dr. Gloria Arand works at PacMed’s Northgate clinic. She’s a doc who shines for her “outstanding clinical competence” and great way of dealing with kids. One voter writes that she “focuses first on connecting with my child without condescending, then makes sure I’m in the loop.” Arand went to school at Johns Hopkins University and trained at Children’s Hospital of Pittsburgh.

Other finalists include Dr. Connie Wang of Pacific Medical Center, Canyon Park, who you call “very kind and good with kids”; Dr. Benjamin Starnes of Swedish Medical Center, who you call “very nice,” “knowledgeable” and “so friendly”; and Pacific Medical Center physician Dr. Elizabeth Ware (“Kind, caring and makes them feel safe. Expert in her field.”).


Best of Seattle: Lynwood Kids DentistKids' Dentist

Winner: Dr. Roger Lucas
Lots of votes came piling in for Dr. Roger Lucas of Lynnwood Kids Dentist. Dr. Lucas is board certified by the American Board of Pediatric Dentistry and practices at his office near the Alderwood Mall. Adoring parents call his office “wonderful” and one notes that “[her] 2-year-old let them clean his teeth.” (You’ll know that this is quite an achievement if you’ve ever tried to convince a recalcitrant toddler to open his mouth for the little mirror.)


Dr. Purva Merchant of Seattle Kids Dentistry on Queen Anne impresses you with her office’s flexibility (she accepts patients early) and “fun visits.” According to her website, Merchant “emphasizes early education and prevention to her patients and their families, and strongly encourages the Age 1 Dental Visit to give kids a healthy start toward their oral health.” (Fun fact: Merchant is also a former Miss India who graduated at the top of her class in dental school.)

Dr. Bryan Brenner practices gentle family and cosmetic dentistry out of his offices in southwest Seattle. He earned his dental degree from the University of Iowa’s College of Dentistry and is a member of the American Dental Association and the Washington State Dental Society.

You also like Dr. Christine Tweedy of Westside Children’s Dentistry in West Seattle, Dr. Loren Tarr of Madrona Family Dental and Dr. Troy Hull of Greenlake Kids Dentistry.

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