Groove Juice Swing's nine multitalented dance instructors, many of whom also play instruments, have spent more than a decade helping novice dancers sharpen their rug-cutting skills during private and group classes, which focus on Jazz Age and swing-era styles. In their quest to master the art of swing, students shuffle their feet through three levels of dance classes that build on one another, beginning with level-one classes covering the basics. Level-two classes, which focus on the lindy hop, teach participants to float on air as if they were standing on a floor of industrial fans, and level-three classes delve into more advanced techniques, such as doing the Charleston with a partner.
Outside of Groove Juice Swing––located at Tango Cafe’s dance studio––passersby can hear jazzy tunes by Ella Fitzgerald, Duke Ellington, and Nina Simone emanating from lively dance classes held every Monday, Tuesday, and Wednesday night. Aside from classes, students can flaunt freshly learned skills during Groove Juice Swing’s annual Stompology workshop or events with live bands hosted by dance experts Steven Mitchell and Virginie Jensen.
Helmed by two professional dancers and a martial artist with a second-degree black belt in karate, the certified instructors at Bounce Aerobics strive to infuse each of their classes with a party-like atmosphere. They lead guests of all ages and abilities through high-energy moves in a variety of weight-lifting- and dance-based fitness classes. When they're not disguising aerobic exercises as easy-to-follow dance moves in hip-hop, Zumba, and dance fitness classes, they slow the pace down in body-and-spirit rejuvenating yoga and Pilates classes.
Their studio encompasses an urban atmosphere reminiscent of Manhattan's downtown feel. This loft-like space is outfitted with brick walls, faux streetlights, and a lifelike subway car, as well as a full-length mirror to confirm that the instructor is not actually King Kong. In the onsite boutique, friendly staff members help shoppers pick out exercise gear and gym bags from Zumba, Turbo, and Bounce Aerobics' own line.
When Rick Rugg and Bob Schiffhauer founded the first Athletic Club in Buffalo in 1980, they chartered their gym around three values: service, cleanliness, and having owners operate their own facilities. True to the founders’ original vision, each of the Rochester locations' employees strive to keep their cardio and resistance equipment spic and span as they care for facilities that range of up to 30,000 square feet.
In addition to personal training, instructors lead more than 400 group fitness classes—including cycling, yoga, and Zumba—offered each week across their five locations. After workouts, guests can slip into saunas and private showers; most locations also have steam rooms, and the Perinton location has a pool. Three of the RAC locations are for women only, allowing them to workout uninhibited by the company of men or asexual mermaids.
In "Understanding CrossFit," founder Greg Glassman says CrossFit?s ?specialty is not specializing.? Flower City CrossFit's dedicated instructors certainly follow that philosophy, providing their members with a slew of constantly changing exercises that incorporate everything from bootcamp?style cardio and body-weight routines to Olympic lifting, climbing, throwing, and basic tumbling. Classes are held multiple times per day, and might feature the Workout of the Day, focus on athletes prepping for the CrossFit Games, or help children prepare to face another week of extreme recess. But exercisers will rarely see the same workout twice. In fact, some classes introduce completely new techniques, such as self-defense seminars, dodge-ball tournaments, or the occasional Barbells for Boobs event, which supports low-income and uninsured women in need of breast-cancer prevention screenings.
Soon after Rochester Optical was founded in 1932, the staff established contracts with the U.S. Department of Defense to supply the armed forces with durable, combat-ready glasses. Today, they continue to specialize in military eyewear, along with high-performance sports and safety glasses and a huge selection of designer frames. A team of optometrists—which includes a fellow of the American Academy of Optometry, a fifth-generation Rochesterian, and an eye doctor who has worked at the Veterans Affairs hospital in Salem, Virginia—performs comprehensive eye exams, and technicians manufacture lenses in an in-house, state-of-the-art optical lab. In addition to traditional single-vision lenses or no-line bifocals, they create digitally surfaced, free-form lenses that offer an expanded field of vision and minimize image distortion, allowing wearers to more clearly see apparitions standing next to them.
While everyone knows that a custom suit will fit better and last longer than something off the rack, not many people apply this logic to their bicycles. Bike Zone is working to correct this view by eschewing one-size-fits-all bikes in favor of cycles that are each built to its rider’s body type and intended usage. Staff begin by measuring clients for the correct frame and then adjust the seat and handlebars until each component is as comfortable and easy to control as possible. Clients can also test ride and compare any of the shop’s Raleigh, Trek, and Felt models, each of which has been expertly assembled by an in-store mechanic instead of by North Pole elves.
Bike Zone also specializes in repairs for all brands of bikes, and mechanics can be found manning six separate repair stations any time of day. Each new bicycle bought in the store comes with a free tune-up, and the shop also accepts trade-ins for bike-shop-quality bikes that are in good working order.
What began as eight racquetball courts in 1978 has grown into a family fitness center housing exercise machines, group classes, indoor pools, volleyball, basketball, and a smoothie bar. Penfield Fitness and Racquet Club members make use of an endless supply of free weights and Technogym or Life Fitness cardio equipment equipped with TVs for personal viewing.
A team of trainers leads 99 group fitness classes each week, such as Zumba dance aerobics, Pilates, and yoga as well as nationwide programs including Les Mills and SilverSneakers. In keeping with their heritage, trainers host racquetball lessons, leagues, and tournaments for adults and children. Members can take advantage of free childcare services and cool off after workouts at the club’s onsite smoothie bar instead of attempting to somersault into a passing ice-cream truck.
Dispersed throughout a class studio and a spacious workout floor, World Gym Rochester's trainers usher guests of all ages and abilities toward physical health. Their certifications—granted from organizations such as NFPT, CrossFit, and Moms in Motion—bespeak experience in several fitness fields, just as the gym's class curriculum covers exercise styles from Zumba dances to martial arts. As the trainers emphasize realism during their personal sessions and group workouts, they eschew the gimmicks of pocket treadmill salesmen for a focus on achievable results.
Guests can cycle beneath the lightning bolt decor of the spin zone, watch television as they jog in the cardio area, or heft weights aboard strength machines on the fitness floor. Tanning and chiropractic amenities can also tend to physiques that aren't working through reps or posing as life-size Operation game boards in the childcare room.
The top-level Pilates, GyroMovement, and cardio equipment at Pilates Plus rivals that of a high-end health club, complete with a full-service spa. It's the instructors, however, who use their years of training and unbridled passion for fitness to foster the tight-knit, motivational community of a small gym. Whether conducting yoga classes or doling out healthy tips at the nutritionist-run, onsite café, the staff goes out of its way to make fitness a convenient part of its patrons' lives. The spa's therapeutic massages, facial peels, and waxing treatments make for great post-workout rewards, and the heat from the infrared sauna sinks more deeply into skin than in traditional saunas to further encourage weight loss or make popsicles easier to drink.
At RockVentures, climbers of all ages and experience levels scale challenge-filled walls lining the 18,000-square-foot facility. Classes impart students with surefooted spirit and fundamental climbing skills such as anchoring the rope for comrades. In addition to individual challenges, the center hosts several group events, ranging from team-building weekends to kids' birthday parties and summer camps. Rock Ventures grants discounted admission to veterans and their families with advance reservation on Saturday mornings, and helps disabled climbers conquer the rocks by using block-and-tackle systems to hoist themselves up.
Owner Kent Winchester informs his work at RockVentures with a multifaceted history of leadership and team-building experience, including a stint in the Peace Corps.
At Center of Healing and Rejuvenation, licensed massage therapist Rose Sharma specializes in east Indian modalities and holistic-healing techniques that nurture a wholesome relationship between mind and body. Rose's therapeutic credentials include certifications from Portland's East-West College of The Healing Arts and an Ayurvedic therapist certification from Chakrapani Ayurvedic Clinic and Research Center in Jaipur, India. By employing her various levels of expertise, she enables clients to choose either a western massage treatment or an eastern ayurvedic experience. In addition to helping clients form detoxifying nutritional and exercise plans, Rose also provides reiki, pranic healing, and other treatments intended to infuse the body with positive energy and implant every number of pi in the memory.
Atman Yoga Studio's Enrique A. Fulchi—a native of Lima, Peru, and a devoted yoga instructor—guides students through 90-minute classes that aim to strengthen the body, increase flexibility, and open the mind. The Vinyasa flow class caters to all experience levels and replaces yoga's traditional spinal-alignment exercises—duct-taping tetherball poles to the back—with a steady series of back bends, inversions, and balancing poses supported by steady breathing exercises. The Ashtanga flow class accommodates more practiced yogis, and private sessions with Enrique help to deepen practice with focused tutelage. In all classes, Enrique may modify postures with props to better match students' goals and heighten the realism of their Shakespearean soliloquies.
Canoes float under a sunny sky, kayakers speed along lush riverbanks, and standup paddleboards engage core muscles in adrenaline-pumping workouts. With dozens of watercraft for rent and sale, BayCreek Paddling Center's team brings aquatic adventures like these to life. Their staff members, which range from young enthusiasts to 30-year industry veterans, launch customers into Irondequoit Creek, where they can float amid an orchestra of bird songs and opera-trained fish. In addition to rentals, the staff guide activities. Aboard their various watercraft, certified instructors lead lessons and nature tours that wind through glacier-carved terrain and former Seneca Native American lands.
Founded in 1914, the original New York City location of Sterling Optical doled out frames amid the Ford Model Ts and paperboys that swarmed the city's financial district. The original band of eyesight experts weathered years of economic depression by impressing customers with speedy, full-service vision care, later launching a second store near Washington, DC. Today, a century of steady franchise expansion has given rise to almost 200 store locations in 23 states. Most locations continue the tradition of offering one-stop optical services, giving customers access to exams and onsite labs that manufacture glasses in one hour. The spectacle provider has been named one of the nation's leading franchises by Entrepreneur magazine.
Pittsford Optical stylishly sharpens eyesight with a collection of boutique eyewear crafted by top-notch lines. The staff vanquishes vision problems with retina counseling, thorough exams, and frames in a rotating selection of high-end designer styles. In addition to standard eyewear, they also stock both prescription and nonprescription sunglasses that help slow the progress of squint-induced wrinkles with eye-shielding lenses. To keep corneas in top form, Pittsford Optical readies prescriptions in 7–10 business days, roughly the same amount of time it takes to deliver a cross-state package via cartwheel courier.