Since 1989, the Palmer family and a tight-knit team of personal trainers have helmed Fitness Gear and Training, promoting healthy, fulfilling lifestyles through expert one-on-one fitness guidance. In addition to helping clients maintain muscle-toning workout regimens with 30-minute Fit courses or personal-training sessions, Fitness Gear and Training keeps home gyms running smoothly with fitness-equipment repairs and sales.
Zumba Fitness with Makesha Hays encourages fitness seekers to shimmy and shake to a fitter body with heart-pumping weekday Zumba sessions. Latin beats infuse hips with rhythmic motions that can whittle waistlines into hourglass curves and torsos into upturned metronomes. Up to 30 booty-shaking bodies follow the instructor's lead, blending cardio and muscle toning into a calorie-slaughtering workout that avoids the monotony of treadmills, ellipticals, or performing jumping-jacks while rigorously filling out tax returns.
Northwest Curves, a fitness center designed exclusively for women, provides members with a 30-minute circuit of hydraulic resistance machines designed for an efficient cardio and strength training workout. During the training, attendees can burn up to 500 calories and work each major muscle group to work toward individual fitness goals. An experienced coach is always nearby to teach and motivate participants, and a soundtrack of fun, upbeat music cues participants to move on to the next station. Instead of fiddling with weight stacks and losing momentum, the hydraulic machines use your own body weight and fitness level to create resistance. Each machine uses push-and-pull motions to create toned, lean muscles perfect for crushing a grapefruit without looking like you can.
VI Fitness—a workout mainstay with a dozen locations peppering Vancouver Island—splits its real estate between coed and women’s only gyms. Coed locations line the floors with a wide variety of strength and stability equipment, free weights, and cardio machines; women’s locations host a similar array of gear but in designs tailored specifically for women. The two gym models are otherwise similar, hosting yoga classes and group exercise courses such as VI Fitness’s signature indoor cycling.
Alternatively, each gym’s team of personal trainers creates customized regimens for patrons with the help of the Polar BodyAge system that measures individual fitness levels. The sessions also motivate athletes and ensure they use proper technique, significantly reducing the risk of injury, overexertion, or the embarrassment of accidentally bench-pressing a treadmill. The on-site child minding watches over exercisers’ little ones while secure rental lockers keep personal effects locked up.
"I love the way Bikram Yoga makes me feel happy, energized, and healthy. I didn’t love the heat at first, but now I need to sweat everyday."
—Anastasia Magdalene, Bikram Yoga Saanich Instructor
It only took 26 yoga postures and a heated room to rid Anastasia Magdalene of her chronic back pain. That winning combination—the foundation of Bikram Yoga—has changed the lives of many of Bikram Yoga Saanich's instructors. Abbey Lee found a sense of community, while Owl won relief from anxiety, spinal issues, and other problems. Read more about the instructors, who were each trained personally by Bikram yoga founder Bikram Choudhury.
Bikram Yoga Saanich's studio features rubber flooring made with recycled materials, low-flow shower heads, and no plastic water bottles. The hot studio of Bikram Yoga Saanich make for a happy planet Earth and a jealous planet Mars. Find out all the ways the studio stays eco-friendly.
Classes at Bikram Yoga Saanich accommodate all levels, including first-timers. Here are some tips for new students: