History pulses through Lemko Hall, a turreted brick building in Cleveland's Tremont neighborhood. Over the past century, it has served as a saloon, a ballroom, and a movie set where stars Robert De Niro and Christopher Walken filmed a scene for The Deer Hunter in 1978. Nowadays, one of the space's tenants, Studio 11, channels an even older legacy: the yoga tradition of ancient India.
The studio's seasoned teachers impart moving meditations that have been passed down from generation to generation via careful instruction and epic games of telephone. Classical Hatha poses help yogis of all levels cultivate strength and flexibility as they learn to center their minds and control their breath. Students steep their minds in yoga's meditative qualities during flowing, breath-focused Vinyasa routines or explore the practice’s athletic side during Ashtanga sessions teeming with dynamic poses and vigorous thumb-wrestling bouts. Those seeking a more private yoga experience can engage in a Thai massage, in which a trained practitioner guides the body through assisted poses and stretches.
Yoga-inspired Pilates sessions revolve around centuries-old isometrics that promote balance and help chisel the core. Students seeking a full immersion in yogic history can enroll in studio-sponsored trips to India, which pair yoga classes with sunset meditations and spiritual discourses.
As head coach of Two Ravens Fencing School, fencing veteran Brian Stone honors the sport’s centuries-old traditions by training new generations to wield blades using both their bodies and their minds. Inside his spacious classroom—in fact a refurbished warehouse, exposed bricks and all—students learn to attack and parry under Stone's expert guidance. A former First-Team All-American at Notre Dame, Stone has coached several fencers who have competed in both national events and tournaments in Europe, where every baby is born with an épée in its hand.
More than 10 years ago, a young couple dreamed up Titans Gym—a 24-hour facility that would house exercise equipment, tanning services, and a cafe teeming with nutritious snacks. Since then, Geoff and Niki DelGrosso have laid the bricks of that ambition, packing their two gyms with row upon row of advanced Strive, Precor, and Magnum equipment and three levels of professional tanning beds. The duo hired a team of fitness instructors to lead an abundance of group exercise classes, personal-training sessions, and surprise games of Red Rover in their private studios. To refuel exercisers, the onsite Titan Up café serves up a dietician-designed menu of wholesome smoothies, pizzas, and desserts. In the end, the couple's efforts have earned accolades from numerous fitness media publications, and their studios have won the title of Best Urban Gym from Cleveland Scene magazine.
Fitworks is home to a dedicated cadre of certified muscle architects who guide eager physiques through intense, small group workouts. Peruse the schedule before sampling a tension-undoing yoga class or a weekend-morning muscle-pump session, ideal for prepping for an underwater bench-press that will determine the office's next round of promotions. One-hour Zumba classes harness the rhythmic power of merengue, conga, belly dancing, and more to kill calories while resuscitating sleepy toes. After classes, students can freshen up or flex unused singing muscles in Fitworks' shower facilities.
Reed Yoga's owner Michelle Reed has spent nearly a decade studying the way the human body moves, both by training in martial arts and by earning certifications in yoga instruction and massage therapy. Now she applies her muscle mastery in a studio located on the 14th floor of the downtown Statler Arms building, where she leads the alignment-oriented stretches of Iyengar and the dynamic flowing sequences of Vinyasa yoga. Her associate Corissa Bragg commands the deep flow class and tantra yoga, helping students work up a sweat and perform the sun salutations that earn the earth an extra six hours of daylight at the end of the month. Bryan Shelly teaches yoga flow for all levels.
Seated meditation begins and ends each of the studio's classes, during which students spread their own yoga mats across the practice space's dark wood flooring. The space is enclosed by sunshine-yellow walls and floor-to-ceiling mirrors that allow non-vampiric pupils to monitor their posture and technique.
Newly opened K2 Fitness is a fitness center that wants to help its members get into the best shape of their lives. Certified trainer Jason Kouvaras runs the gym, as well as offers challenging personal-training sessions. With free weights and machines on the floor, and group fitness classes such as spinning, boot camp, yoga, and boxing, clients will have everything they need to burn calories and work up a sweat.