Beverly Clark helms a troupe of experienced fitness instructors at Excelerated Fitness & Pilates, folding her personal training certification into each of her classes. With her signature high energy, she leads students through the strengthening and elongating poses of yoga or helps them to build stronger cores ab by ab in Pilates. Peppering in self-defense moves with workouts, her six-week Strike sessions blend kickboxing and strength-training moves to give students a fighting chance against mugging kangaroos. Guests can also zero in on fitness goals during seasonal outdoor boot camps and month-long Pilates sessions.
The Yoga Place’s founder, Michael Curtis, considers himself an eternal student, always learning more of what yoga has to offer. Somewhat paradoxically, this is what makes him such a good instructor, since it means he’s ready to go back to any point in his yogic journey to help a fellow student. He characterizes his pursuit of yoga in three foundational descriptions: skillfulness in action, equilibrium, and clarity of mind. He imparts these principles six days a week in classes for all levels of practitioners.
Michael’s pursuit of fitness doesn’t end with yoga, however. He also has teachers on staff who conduct belly-dancing and tai chi classes, both of which are excellent ways to enhance the mind-body connection without growing an extra spinal cord.
Anita Artzner helps people build leaner bodies with Pilates lessons. She infuses her experience dancing with the Dayton Contemporary Dance Company and the Canton Ballet into intense lessons and draws from certifications in a variety of exercise techniques, including Resist-A-Ball, dance medicine, and Core Dynamics. In addition to her regular Pilates classes, Anita offers a free, 20-minute Watercooler Pilates workout that people can incorporate into their daily routines at work, on the train, or while squeezing tomatoes in the grocery store.
The aptly named Fitness Anytime offers a plethora of equipment 24 hours a day to accommodate all fitness styles and schedules. Classes are included with a membership and are conducted weekday evenings before the instructors set off for nocturnal ninja duties. Body Boot Camp combines cardio with calisthenics for a high-intensity workout that burns more than 650 calories in an hour, the equivalent of running five to seven miles or doing the running man to an entire MC Hammer album. The 15 Minute Abs for Beginners and Intermediates cuts to the core and transforms muffin tops into muscle in record-setting time. Achieve Gumby-esque flexibility, posture, and muscle tone with Pilates sessions, and banish boredom with a bevy of body-blasting routines in the Bands, Balls, and Weights class, for which mats and weights are provided.
Anytime Fitness attracts devout customers for its amenities alone: 24-hour access to its 1,700 locations across the country, 24-hour security, private showers and bathrooms, massage services, wellness programs, and personal training, to name a few. The gym’s top-of-the-line equipment from Life Fitness, Hammer Strength, and Intek Strength ranges from cardio machines—treadmills, ellipticals, and stationary bikes—to strength equipment—free weights, weight machines, and circuit-training tools.
Eight hundred. That's the estimate of how many calories students can burn during each of the fitness classes, held four times a week at Dynamic Cardio-Kickboxing. The instructors lead groups through 60-minute classes that combine muscle-toning kickboxing moves with calorie-burning cardiovascular exercise. Other benefits of the classes include increased flexibility and knowledge of self-defense techniques.
Studio Oxygen's array of yoga classes strengthen, tone, and reduce stress among carbon-based life forms. Many sessions are open to all skill levels, with only a few geared toward more advanced practitioners and Sony AIBOs. Yoga basics teaches barefooted students breath work and smooth position transition, hot yoga helps release bodily toxins into the wild, and slow flow Vinyasa yoga moves at a gentle, deliberate pace.