A community presence in Ottawa for more than 140 years, YMCA-YWCA of the National Capital Region remains true to its mission of physical and social enrichment for men, women, and kids of all ages across all seven of its facilities. Staff members uphold the YMCA’s core values of honesty, acceptance, and fairness as they invest in their community’s children and strengthen family bonds critically weakened by overzealous games of Monopoly. They pump up adult fitness regimens with aquatic fitness and boot-camp classes, personal training, and full gymnasiums outfitted with equipment for basketball, soccer, and rope skipping. They’ve also filled their fitness centres with free weights, cardio equipment, and weight machines. When they’re not helping adults trim down waistlines during yoga, boxing, and salsa-dance classes, staff members are getting back in touch with their inner children. They stimulate imagination, mental development, and growth as they lead children’s day camps, after-school programs, birthday parties, and outdoor education.
These YMCA-YWCA outposts are dedicated to helping all members of the community. They provide those in need with emergency and youth housing, employment services, and domestic-violence support programs. They further strengthen and unite the Ottawa community through the YActive Assist program, which adjusts membership rates to help families that can’t afford the full cost of any of YMCA’s progressive programs.
More than 1,000 Snap Fitness centres stand out in Canadian cities and northern states, staying aglow throughout the night with the kinetic energy of evening patrons. The centres provide members with 24-hour access to all equipment, allowing them to train at whatever hour their espresso shots finally kick in. During appointments, personal trainers work with members on free weights and cardio machines in order to help them reach individual goals such as losing weight, toning muscles, training for sports competitions, or recovering from injuries. As an added accommodation, some Snap Fitness locations host tanning studios that bronze and define muscular contours and help chest hairs flourish through photosynthesis.
The experienced instructors at Studio de Danse Danielle keep their training accessible for all students, offering a fully accredited dance program in both English and French. They also back up their seasoned years with professional standings: the team is fully comprised of accredited and certified instructors. In a variety of dance classes, they teach students of all ages how to perfect the steps to ballet, tap, jazz, hip-hop, Bollywood dance, and Acro—a blend of dance and acrobatics. Adult students can also take advantage of cardio fitness classes such as Zumba. Above all, student safety remains a top priority at the centre, where obstacle-free studios feature floors covered with a springy surface to reduce the risk of injury.
The instructors at Patenaude Martial Arts embody fang shen do, or "way of survival" with several types of classes: kung fu, mixed martial arts, kickboxing, and self-defense. These experts combine Eastern philosophies to teach the finer points of martial arts in classes for men and women. For self-defense, the also bring in kids or the full family. In all of these classes, the training doesn't focus entirely on fighting. The classes also teach things applicable to all areas of life, both inside and outside class, such as confidence, self control, and how to wear a belt with impeccable style.
Ropes and giant tires litter the ground, and large resistance bands hang from rafters—this isn't a tractor warehouse, it’s PhysXtreme's well-stocked training grounds. Here, a fleet of certified instructors, led by trainer Shane Miller, leads high-intensity boot camps and athletic strength training programs. Whether outdoors or inside, they helm the sessions using a variety of heart-pumping and muscle-building workouts, such as sandbag training, flipping tires, lifting kettlebells, and giving piggyback rides to friendly bears.
At La Sangha Yoga de Gatineau, founder Natalie Tomaro draws from her 12 years of professional yogic practice and a lifetime of passion for strengthening the human body and brain to help her students discover their physical and spiritual potential. Natalie has amassed hundreds of hours of training from masters such as Marcia Solomon, Richard Freeman, and Vyass Houston, developing a deep respect and understanding for the meditation and asanas of yoga. In addition to equipping novices with the skills and guidance for practicing healthful, fulfilling, yoga, La Sangha hosts regular events such as breathing workshops and Vipassana meditation sessions.