Whenever she strolled down a sandy beach or marveled at the redwoods of a lush forest, LeTa Jussila would be reminded that Santa Cruz was the most beautiful place in the world. It seemed a shame to her that most people spent so much of their days inside houses and offices rather than taking advantage of the diverse landscapes of their surroundings. Inspired, she spearheaded the foundation of Optimal Health and Fitness—a multidimensional outdoor-fitness program.
Today, LeTa and her staff of trainers conduct energetic boot-camp classes at local beaches, forests, and mountain trails. They use the tools of their surroundings as exercise equipment, such as running up park stairs for a cardio workout. Encouraging well-rounded, healthy lifestyles, the instructors also conduct seminars on holistic topics such as stress management and meditation. Nutrition specialists, meanwhile, provide students with balanced meal plans and supervise detoxifying cleanses. The staff also offers various treatments popularized in the East, including traditional Chinese acupuncture treatments and rejuvenating qi gong stretching classes.
Since Rocky Snyder founded his self-named fitness studio 18 years ago, Good Times Magazine has bestowed the facility with its Best Personal Trainer award six times, a testament to Rocky's Fitness Center's commitment to one-on-one training and promoting healthy form and movement.
Group training sessions maintain a manageable 6:1 student-to-teacher ratio in classes whose daily-changing moves blasts through workout plateaus with the gusto of a military tank. Sessions are small enough for instructors to ensure the proper execution of exercises and give each client some individual attention. Amid the gym's green and yellow color-blocked confines, exercisers take part in Rocky's scientifically savvy program, which is designed to ignite metabolism and bulk up muscular strength. The qualified trainers help individuals as well as small groups build strong, powerful forms with one-on-one instruction, while sports training conditions recreational and performance athletes alike.
Trudie Ransom knows just how addictive the sensation of standing above the waves can be. After just a few trips out on her board, she not only began training with the standup-paddleboarding master Andy Whitman from Angulo boards, but also opened up SUP Shack. From her experience shadowing Whitman, she decided the best way to introduce people to the sport was with Angulo's soft, 10-foot boards, which serve as an easy surface to learn on while spending a day on the waves or taking one of the shop's classes or tours. Classes never contain more than six students, allowing each student to have the one-on-one attention needed to master the art of balancing and maneuvering the board. Once pupils are sure of their strokes, the shop's instructors lead guided tours that slip out across the rippling blue mirror and past the sights of the harbor or tackle the more advanced paths past sea-lion habitats. Late-evening tours pause as the sun sets over the ocean, filling the sky with color like somebody inciting peacocks to riot.
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Each Body By Laser clinic pairs cold-laser technology with holistic health practices to help patients lose inches and keep them off. The treatment gets its magic from cold lipolasers, which are designed to gently shrink fat cells by dislodging their contents so that they can be fully discarded through the body's natural metabolic process and series of tiny secondhand stores. Each one-hour treatment series wraps up with a consultation on diet and exercise, along with a quick session atop a whole-body-vibration platform engineered to burn even more calories.
Like art-house films and fish-flavored popsicles, these procedures are not intended for everyone; females who are pregnant or nursing should not undertake the treatment, nor should patients with active forms of cancer. Should any complications be discovered during Body By Laser's initial screening, the company will issue a refund.
Studio 831's graffiti-clad interior greets guests with an impressive line-up of functional fitness equipment that includes climbing ropes, medicine balls, barbells, and weight machines. The studio's trainers eagerly customize their instructions during the studio's three offered classes. During CrossFit Workouts of the Day, they'll combine Olympic weightlifting with gymnastics and cardio to build routines whose movements are relevant to daily living, and run through staggered stretches, plyometrics, and strength work during X-Train circuit-style programs. For an aerobic workout and a way to condition muscles with low impact, they lead aerobics routines on trampolines in fun and effective Urban Rebound courses. During one-on-one sessions, they'll design entire fitness plans to help clients achieve their goals of looking slimmer or beating incumbent state politicians in gubernatorial body building contests.
Spokesman Bicycles' mechanics obviously ride their bikes to work, but that's not the only thing they do to reduce their impact on the environment. They also donate used tubes and tires to Totally Tubular Bags, use a biodegradable fluid in their parts cleaning machine, and ride whales to work only on special occasions.
But they didn't get into biking just to help the environment—they love everything about the sport, and many of them have been seriously cycling and fixing up bikes since the '70s. At their shop, the mechanics build road and mountain bikes, as well as work with fitters who adjust each bike to fit the needs of the rider. To keep clients safe and happy, they pass on their expertise to riders during free maintenance classes every month.
After Camille Smith-Ballon was struck by a car, she refused to treat her neck, back, and shoulder injuries lying down. Instead, she hit the gym. As she pushed through rehabilitative exercise and resistance routines, she accumulated numerous fitness certifications and acquired the knowledge that would one day fuel her own training business. Now, as the owner of CruzFit, she stands by the belief that willpower trumps all other circumstances on the road to wellness. She leads private- and group-training sessions based on her clients’ preferences, asserting that fitness should stem from the activities you love to do. She also hosts Aqua Running classes at neighborhood pools, utilizing water resistance to tone the body's sprinting muscles and prepare runners to finally outpace showoff mechanical rabbit lures.
Jump on a treadmill, tune out, go home. Repeat. This is exactly the type of workout rut the founders of Crossfit West were hoping to break free of when they opened this results-focused gym. Here, intensity is the key to a successful workout, and the encouraging trainers motivate guests to push past their personal limits each day, whether that means lifting five pounds or carrying five tired classmates to the water fountain. Using a workout system originally developed for military training drills, the trainers lead ever-changing routines that are scalable to any fitness level and can include tasks such as burpees, push-ups, squats, and sled pulls. Best of all, the gym offers more than 25 classes per week so members can drop by for a plateau-blasting workout whenever their schedule allows.
The accommodating staff at Bike Dojo, a cycling gym founded by Rob Mylls, keeps the community active with two-wheeled activities ranging from indoor spin classes and kid-based ride programs. Schwinn indoor recreational bikes perch inside the studio space, beckoning exercisers of all levels to pedal their way through energetic classes that boost cardiovascular health and finally put Tour de France commemorative bike shorts to use. Bike Dojo memberships grants full access to the facility and every new member joining Bike Dojo contributes to a child in the community through Dojo's program, Project B.I.K.E., which donates a bike to a child for every new membership.
Divinitree Yoga and Art Studio's instructors seek to share their passion with the community, creating a welcoming atmosphere for students of virtually any skill level or yogic persuasion. The classes encompass a range of styles, although flowing Vinyasa and Hatha sessions appear prominently throughout. The more advanced sections of these energetic practices encourage students to push themselves physically while still keeping a mindful awareness of their breathing and posture throughout.
Beyond the yoga mat, the instructors also keep themselves busy by hosting art classes for students' children and caring for their onsite garden, which grows organic produce and spare chakras.
At Minorsan Self-Defense & Fitness, the team of instructors share their wealth of knowledge to equip students with real-world self-defense skills, but their classes also focus on fitness. They also branch out into dance-based Zumba, kickboxing, and BodyPump––a class that mingles weightlifting with upbeat music. Kids are welcome, too, with martial arts programs that instill them with leadership skills.
BAPWC offers a comprehensive interdisciplinary approach to treating chronic pain. Our provider team includes physicians, nurse practitioners, wellness instructors, art therapists, marriage and family therapists, a dentist that specializes in oral facial pain, acupunturists, psychologists, and phsyical therapists.
Sand N Sea Fitness offers personal training and online fitness training. Group fitness classes include: Boot Camp, Core Blast!, Baby Boomer Fitness and Abs, Butt, Thighs. With over 20 years in the fitness industry, certified personal trainer, Jennifer Adams, is passionate about helping people achieve their goals.
• For $59, you get one month of adult fitness classes (up to 10 classes, a $140 value). This option is redeemable at the Downtown, Live Oak, or Westside locations or at the Cabrillo Fitness Club in Aptos. Zumba classes are not valid Tuesday, Thursday, and Sunday at Live Oak. • For $49, you get one month of kids' and teen fitness classes (up to 10 classes, a $140 value). This option is redeemable only at the Westside and Live Oak locations.
At Curves, exercisers move around a circuit of hydraulic resistance machines that have been designed to work with women's bodies and promote weight loss, protect against osteoporosis, and deal with arthritis. During your first visit, an experienced trainer can appraise fitness skills and help set attainable goals through a personal-training assessment, fitness assessment, and adrenaline-pumping Rorschach test that will highlight an ideal slim-down strategy. During each workout, guests spend 30 minutes moving around a circuit that positions machines inward so that calorie torchers have a chance to laugh with their fellow fitness frontierswomen. Instead of fiddling with weight stacks and losing momentum, the hydraulic machines use each client's body weight and fitness level to create resistance that matches their abilities, decreasing the risk of soreness or injury. Since traditional lift-and-lower motions create bulky muscles, each machine at Curves uses push-and-pull motions to create toned, lean muscles perfect for crushing a grapefruit without looking like you can.