The instructors at The Body Center don't view Pilates as a simple exercise trend—instead, they conduct classes as interactive seminars on human anatomy. They teach clients how to train certain muscle groups by identifying and coaxing them through specific movement patterns designed to increase strength and flexibility at the same time. Ultimately, they try to instill in their students an enhanced sense of bodily awareness, one that informs walks down the street just as much as it does stretches on the mat.
Because physiques differ depending on build, lifestyle, and how often they were pinched as babies, The Body Center's curriculum is appropriately broad. Class themes range from Reformer and mat Pilates to TRX suspension training and High Intensity Interval Training classes. These subsets are also divided by skill level. Beginners derive comfort from the company of other trainees, while intermediate and advanced classes pursue communal challenges. Specialized lessons can focus on specific body parts, sports performance, or the use of props, and modifications throughout every course cater to individual fitness levels.
The staff keeps classes small in the interest of personalization. Mat classes accept up to 10 students, and Reformer classes won't admit more than 6. Private and duet sessions allow for even more focused attention, as instructors won't be distracted by the loud popping of several emerging six-packs.
Jazzercise is 60 minutes of cardio, strength training, and stretching that incorporates moves from hip-hop, yoga, Pilates, jazz dance, kickboxing, and resistance training with handheld weights. Dancing With the Stars multiple-champion Cheryl Burke is a big fan of Jazzercise's improvisational workouts, though luckily you won't need her dance moves to get the most out of your class. If you're prone to first-class jitters, though, you can review the basic moves online before you go. Expect to burn off up to 500 calories with each go-round.
Inside a spacious, well-lit studio heated to a temperature of 105 degrees, Bikram Yoga Gig Harbor's amicable instructors lead groups through daily sessions of hot yoga. Each 90-minute gathering comprises 26 hatha postures and two breathing exercises, with every movement designed to stretch and strengthen certain muscles. The elevated temperature of the room creates a safe environment in which muscles can stretch deeply, and simultaneously rids the body of toxins through perspiration.
Whether inside the gym hopping on and off plyometric boxes or outside lifting weights when the sun shines, the trainers at Westsound CrossFit keep routines interesting with ever-changing daily workouts. It’s all part of the CrossFit system, which is designed to employ all muscle groups while staving off the boredom of repetition. Intense classes feature functional movements—such as lifting, pushing, and pulling—that prep participants for all sports, work, and daily activities.
As he was growing up, Isaac Ho wore a sweater outside for all seasons in hopes of disguising a heavy frame. When he did shed his unwanted pounds through exercise, he still felt somewhat unfulfilled—the routines to which he had devoted countless hours didn't strike him as efficient or fun. He began to experiment with fitness techniques, amassing a list of methods that produced results without sacrificing safety or endorsing quick fixes, such as wearing water wings under your clothes. His research led him to become a certified personal trainer and weight-loss specialist, and his drive to educate others has inspired doctors, gym owners, and fellow fitness experts alike. Today, Isaac runs BeFit Tacoma as the culmination of his trials and subsequent discoveries. He enlists other personal trainers based both on their skills and their personalities, believing that charisma goes a long way toward encouraging clients. Inside the private facility, programs from boot camp to semi-private training spark a metamorphosis in guests. Isaac receives clients at any initial fitness level and guides them on their quest to lose weight, tone muscle, and eat healthily, assuring them that "it's not where you start, it's where you finish."
As payback for every “No Girls Allowed” sign that ever hung outside of a men’s restroom, Total Woman Health Studio caters strictly to the ladies in its 7,100-square-foot facility. Supplying the space and equipment for members to work out in peace, Total Woman Health Studio initiates these members with a general health and fitness assessment to measure body composition, flexibility, muscular strength, and aerobic capacity. From there, a cast of certified personal trainers and yoga and group fitness instructors help women of all ages and abilities reach their goals through one-on-one training, group Zumba and yoga classes, and sound nutritional guidance. Clients can fly solo and pick up a set of free weights or climb aboard a cardio machine, all while their children—if they have any—quietly grow centimeters taller inside the onsite nursery.