Flex + Fit cultivates an environment focused on well-being, from sweat-inducing fitness classes to habit-changing cooking classes. This effort was lauded by Charlotte Magazine in its 2012 Best of the Best feature. The group fitness curriculum includes sweat-inducing hot yoga, in which limbs bend and stretch in a studio stoked to the ideal temperature, and air classes that suspend students from the ceiling to execute mid-air yoga, ballet, or fitness moves, or—as recently featured on CNN—to nap.
Complementing the fitness classes are lessons in culinary exploration, hosted by head chefs and tour guides that teach small gatherings to craft meals and sip complimentary libations in an on-site kitchen. The fitness studio’s natural-wood floors give way to a wall-mounted Buddha figurine at the head of classes, and his-and-hers locker rooms lavish hard-working muscles with a soothing downpour from overhead showers bred from two prize-winning Amazonian rain clouds.
YogaFlex employs 16 accredited instructors to bend limbs and minds into harmonious configurations. Choose from more than 35 weekly classes, offered in tissue-tweaking styles including deep stretch, therapeutic Ashtanga yoga, and toxin-wicking hot yoga. All sessions are lead in a friendly and comprehensive manner, with overtones of constant challenge and encouragement. Because the studio’s supply of yoga mats is limited, students are encouraged to bring their own cushy rectangles from home.
Professional bobsled teams shave seconds off their time by breathing in unison and leveraging flexibility during turns. Master the techniques necessary to defeating hardened gangs of bobsled criminals with today's deal: for $39, you get a month of unlimited classes at Gotta Yoga Studio, a $135 value. Gotta Yoga's cozy studio is located about 10 miles outside of downtown Charlotte. With 30 days of unlimited classes, you don't have to commit to a particular style or time slot. Bring your own mat, or rent one of Gotta Yoga's for $2 per session.
Shift shape by stretching and toning at Pilates Body Shaping, located in 8th Street Studio. For $30, you get five Pilates group mat sessions, a $75 value. Each class is 50 minutes of total-body conditioning, giving you 250 total minutes of strengthening and lengthening muscles on the studio’s premier equipment. Follow @Groupon_Says on Twitter.
Growing up in a family of competitive wrestlers, Quinn Reynolds paved her own road away from the sport. She diverted from her father and brothers by pursuing swimming, ballet, and soccer, the latter of which won her a scholarship to the University of Illinois. When she began hot yoga, however, she realized that she was destined for a career on the mat after all. She completed her certification and brought her flexing expertise to Arrichion, a training facility for wrestlers and mixed martial artists where her specialized classes challenge yogis and help to round out the workout routines of seasoned athletes—including the wrestlers on her dad's team.
In class sessions named after different gemstones, Quinn and her team of instructors emphasize approachability and sound technique. They refrain from potentially distracting practices such as chanting or applying mascara to third eyes during the purposeful flow sequences and core-tightening stretches. The hybrid Tiger's Eye class even begins with a fighter's circuit-training component, lending credence to the gym's claim that "real fighters do yoga."
The body-bending gurus at Community Yoga escort students through a variety of muscle-stretching yoga classes suitable for all skill levels. Beginning benders can stretch during the Hatha yoga basics class, which moves at a slower pace to introduce newbies to the practice; or try the Vinyasa session that promotes muscular stamina through faster-moving pose transitions. Yogis can also experience more specialized practices, such as Subtle Yoga, which explores the deeper, more cerebral aspects of yoga. Community Yoga lives up to its name by seeking out a local charity every year to support by donating time, services, and money. With classes seven days a week, the studio provides a schedule as flexible as a slinky made out of cooked spaghetti.