Hot yoga doesn't just help practitioners lose weight, increase flexibility, and tone muscles. It also helps them heal from life-threatening injuries. Bhakti Yoga South Jersey owner Ed Gergler is proof of that. After a near-fatal car crash, Gergler discovered hot yoga, which helped him treat his chronic back pain without surgery. It was so effective that he switched careers from a construction pipe worker to a yoga teacher and studio owner. Now he and his staff lead students through heated yoga classes that strengthen their cores and help them achieve peaceful mindsets. The teachers even offer up tips to new students, encouraging them to drink plenty of water, keep an open mind, and not breathe directly into other students' faces.
The professional staff and certified personal trainers at Optimal Sport Health Club, a popular chain of boutique fitness centers in Philadelphia, want to help their clients get into the best shape of their lives. The facilities have everything members need to reach their workout goals, whether they want to build lean muscle, lose weight, or simply get stronger.
Here, clients can work out with the cardio and strength-training equipment or head over to the group fitness studio to take classes in everything from Pilates to step class to yoga. Personal trainers are on hand for those looking to ramp up their fitness routines.
The teaching staff at The Sanctuary for Yoga fosters physical and spiritual well-being with yoga classes for kids and adults. The studio’s eclectic schedule explores a range of yoga styles, such as Hatha and Vinyasa, connecting minds and bodies without an inch of duct tape. For yoga newbies and yogis who’ve been on a break, beginner’s classes focus on structural alignment and the basics of yoga postures, imparting breathing-exercise techniques, modifications of basic poses, and other yogic building blocks. Vinyasa flow sessions create a dynamic moving meditation by leading students through a progression of poses, transitioning from one asana to the next with careful, balance-challenging movements and breath work to clear the mind of clutter. Instead of bolstering backs with glowing recommendation letters, yogalates classes fortify spines and torsos with yoga poses and the signature isometrics of Pilates.
At Physical Excellence Fitness Center, personal-training sessions and boot-camp classes keep exercisers in shape. Trainers craft custom workout regimens for each individual. Boot-camp classes, on the other hand, stir group support into guided workouts.
Medford Fitness dedicates its 36,000 square feet to all things fitness. Two workout floors claim 10,000 square feet, filled with more than 50 cardio machines, 30 pieces of free-weight equipment, and two open studio spaces for functional training. The group exercise room spans 1,600 square feet of hardwood floors, where exercisers launch into sessions of Cardio Pump, Pilates, and kickboxing. Nearby, 20 bikes crowd the indoor cycling room, four lanes stretch across a heated swimming pool, and service lines divvy up two racquetball courts, where patrons test their reflexes, courage, or hypotheses about being able to head-butt a racquetball.