When licensed cosmetologist Chuck Fiegen founded Capri College in 1966, he knew that the best way to prepare students for the work force was to start at the top—with the educators. By sending his instructors all around the world to learn the latest trends and techniques, he was giving his students access to information they couldn't find in any textbook. More than 45 years have passed, but Fiegen—who continues to run the beauty school with the help of his six children—remains a stickler for teaching excellence. He can occasionally be found observing teaching methods and offering his two-cents on the clinic floor.
Inside the ACCSC-accredited college, instructors with at least three years of experience bolster students’ employability with training in cosmetology, massage therapy, aesthetics, and nail technology. Students put their training into action in the student-staffed salon and spa, where they paint and snip dull strands, and soften extremities with paraffin treatments. In the spa, students dole out five types of massage modalities, from relaxing Swedish strokes to Thai massage, which addresses tension with yoga-like stretches and the pressing of eject buttons. Their panoply of facials help counteract skin woes, such as fine lines or acne, whereas microdermabrasion buffs away dead skin, sunspots, and other facial imperfections with an onslaught of sodium-bicarbonate crystals.
When Wayne and Jackie Meier opened the first Midwest Athletic Club in 1984, it was a tiny, 3,000-square-foot facility with a modest staff of one trainer. A lot has changed for the Meiers since the ‘80s; they’ve since ditched the splatter-painted stirrup pants made famous by Ronald Reagan and expanded into six spacious locations throughout the area, helming a diverse staff of personal trainers, expert fitness instructors, and swim teachers. Instructors lead cardio and strength-training classes, as well as sessions of yoga, Pilates, and tai chi. In the pristine waters of the Xtreme branch’s 75-foot pool, coaches demonstrate strokes and techniques and guide fitness-seekers through aquatic aerobics. All locations abound with professional cardio equipment—many of which boast individual TVs—and strength-training equipment from top brands such as Icarian, Universal, and Nautilus.
After workouts, guests can unwind in the wood saunas at the Xtreme and South locations. At the Xtreme location’s café, servers blend a variety of beneficial smoothies and shakes chock-full of fruits and protein.
Northland Fitness Club, which moved to a new Blairs Ferry Road location in early 2012, stocks its gym with all the amenities of a metropolis exercise complex. Television shows entertain mental muscles while Precor and Stairmaster equipment stimulate and exercise heart and leg sinews. Circuit machines and weight training barbells, meanwhile, enable customized training for pectorals, biceps, forearms, and reararms, which spring from the middle of the back and help quarterbacks fend off blindside sacks. Nationally certified instructors lead group classes—including Zumba and yoga/Pilates fusion—six days a week, and personal trainers craft tailored workouts so that each trainee earns the best possible results. During the 10-week Max10 program, patrons launch kickboxing jabs and run resistance drills in a supportive setting specifically geared toward weight loss, wellness, and intimidating one's own reflection.
When customers reach the third floor of the Cherry Building and walk into Send U My Love, it's not unusual for them to notice the aroma of rich, freshly brewed coffee. Owner Teresa Eadie puts on a pot on most mornings to share. Teresa's life is shaped by her desire to share. In the beginning, she started Send U My Love as a way to share her own love of handmade goodies, and her shop has grown to encompass a dazzling assortment of journals, charming albums, greeting cards, and all the supplies her customers would ever need to make them. Rows of rubber stamps and scrapbooking paper inspire crafters to embark on new projects, and the schedule of classes offered at the shop helps them realize their visions. Teresa also puts together thoughtful kids’ birthday-party packages to take the stress, worry, and piñata-herding out of planning. :m]]
Since launching their flagship 10-week program in 2001, the instructors at Farrell’s eXtreme Bodyshaping have spurred more than 35,000 trainees across 42 locations toward their weight-loss goals. Classes burn fat and build lean muscle with fitness kickboxing and muscle-building with anaerobic bands. Coaches support trainees with a nutrition plan that breaks up food intake into six daily meals, increasing sustaining bodily energy and a sense of déjà vu. The founders of Farrell’s eXtreme Bodybuilding are so confident in their program that they offer a money-back guarantee for those dissatisfied with their results.
ActivEdge Fitness Club's large, two-story fitness temple burns calories with its high-tech cardio deck featuring mounted flat-screen TVs, drowns them in a 25-meter lap pool, and scares them off with the help of peers in more than 20 fitness classes. On the first level, members pump free-weights on a carpeted floor that cushions joint strain, or on a variety of machines designed to sculpt lats, glutes, and thighs. As parents make a splash in aqua aerobics, their kids can burn off excess energy and talk about their favorite characters from Adam Smith’s Wealth of Nations in the supervised childcare center. Members can also make use of the club's basketball court and follow it up with a trip to the tanning room. For a high-intensity full-body-blasting boot camp, the gym’s own GTX program answers with an intense cross-training regimen. Instructors lead groups through a series of interval stations where clients build muscle definition and whip cardiovascular systems into shape with the help of punching bags and medicine balls laid out on turf and rubber floors. During those training sessions, guests lift and push giant tractor tires, swing heavy ropes, and hop high onto plyometric boxes—all exercises that incorporate functional movements to help people perform everyday tasks, such as hurling giant tractor tires into the air and lassoing them with heavy ropes.