Shawn Kephart, the founder of K180 Fitness, uses his own experience struggling with body image and weight loss to lead his students towards their fitness goals. His comprehensive regimen approaches fitness from eight core areas, using a 20,000 square foot gym ergonomically designed for motivation. Certified trainers—many of whom have overcome body image issues, disabilities, or chronic illness—lead classes and personal training sessions, and the gym is also equipped with a full-service kitchen and private lockers and showers.
“Sisters in sweat” Mary and Mandy approach fitness with a philosophy of cooperation. They believe that when one works out in pairs or groups, they are more willing to push themselves harder because they will, in a sense, be succeeding for those motivating them. Together, Mary and Mandy captain boot camps and fitness classes designed for women and men of all fitness levels, including beginners, parents, and mothers-to-be.
At Island Fitness Studio, bodies learn to defy physics, becoming at once firm and bendable. That's because the instructors specialize in tightening cores and enhancing reach. Their group Pilates, yoga, and Beyond Barre sessions coach muscles in the art of balance, extending limbs upward during hot Vinyasa sequences and leveraging focused, dance-inspired stretches against a ballet barre. Other classes, such as TRX suspension training and spinning, complement these flexing routines with resistance and cardio workouts.
Power Pilates–certified teachers also lead private apparatus sessions. They familiarize clients with the Reformer, Tower, Wunda Chair, and other props, all of which develop patrons' posture and strength more safely than fusing steel beams to their skeletons. Regardless of the number of people involved in a lesson, the guides personalize their approach to suit varying goals and fitness levels. The studio can even furnish advanced students with Power Pilates and Beyond Barre certifications.
Eastport Aesthetics pampers patrons with a full menu of spa services in a luxurious, relaxing environment. During a fotofacial, a licensed nurse practitioner will use a nourishing combination of intense pulsed light and radiofrequency energy to erase sunspots, age spots, freckle spots, and the other discolorations and spots that life stencils onto your skin while you're sleeping. Afterward, clients can wrap up in a soft and fuzzy robe while ogling Charleston Harbor, then slip back into real-world clothing before steering their freshly tended flesh toward the outdoors.
The staff at Pilates of Charleston believes that the cost of fitness classes should never prevent one from getting in shape—that’s why they cap the price of their group fitness classes at twenty dollars. In these classes, as well as in private sessions for one or two, they teach the art of Pilates. Created by Joseph Pilates, the practice strengthens the mind-body connection while chiseling the core. Dedicated practitioners report feeling taller, leaner, and stronger; other benefits include improved balance and endurance, both especially beneficial prior to running a tightrope marathon. Pilates of Charleston’s instructors also lead specialty-training workshops for pre- and postnatal students, as well as spine-corrector sessions to gently rehabilitate injuries. They round out their repertoire with barre classes—ballet-inspired toning sessions—and cardio-heavy jump board classes, which strengthen cores and shape legs in 45 minutes.
In 1976, educator, musician, and kinesiologist Robin Wes longed for a children's gym that prioritized personal growth over competition. Unveiled at a time when physical-education classes pushed students to focus almost exclusively on winning, Robin's program was swiftly adopted and is now used in more than 300 Little Gyms worldwide. Robin still pens original music to accompany lessons, which engage whippersnappers aged 4 months to 12 years with gymnastics, dance, karate, and parent and child activities.
Each of The Little Gym's classes introduces simple movements that sharpen motor skills and set brains whirring, allowing kids to progress at their own pace until they can finally build a computer out of macaroni and glitter. Staff members strive to build a base for lifelong social skills and self-assurance with each exercise, including activities rooted purely in fun, such as summer camps or birthday parties, which helped The Little Gym to earn title of #1 Birthday Chain in Parents Magazine.