The ACE-certified instructors at Endurance Fitness, Metro Family Fitness, and Viking Fitness help clients overhaul their health with up-to-date fitness equipment and a lineup of motivating group fitness classes. Build endurance and test out newly added extra limbs by completing circuits on cardiovascular and weight-resistance training machines available at all locations. Exercisers pump body pistons on a cadre of treadmills and elliptical trainers or heft towers of weights pilled atop Nautilus and Body Masters pin selectors. Some gym locations distract athletes from nagging muscles with cardio entertainment stations, where suspended flat-screen TVs cheer them on with their favorite shows and repeat broadcasts of the Coach opening sequence.
In 2003, two fitness-industry veterans, both tired of gyms' reputations as exclusive and elitist establishments, decided to start Fitness 19, a series of gyms dedicated to cultivating a friendly and convenient environment for families to work out in. Needless to say, they experienced meteoric growth—a Fitness 19 logo now hangs above the gym doors of numerous locations spread across 26 states. The gym's owners invest entirely in equipment, outfitting each location with dozens of treadmills, free weights, and resistance-training machines. They also ensure every location has a kids' playroom with games appropriate for the youngest tykes, as well as TVs and DVD players so that tots can watch their favorite shows, such as Thomas the Tank Engine's Total Body Workout.
Dawn Malek and Kathy Hinchman, co-owners of CCPlus @ The Center, designed their roster of fitness classes with one goal in mind: to make exercise accessible to people of all ages and abilities. Regular fitness classes cater to all tastes, and include Vinyasa yoga, kickboxing, and Zumba. Seniors keep in shape in a staggering array of gentle, low-impact exercise programs—many of which are appropriate for clients who use wheelchairs and walkers—such as seated yoga and tai chi. On the other end of the age spectrum, high-energy Zumbatomic classes get kids aged 4–12 in on the popular aerobic dance routines, which harness children’s innate capacity for energy in the same way nuclear power plants rely on an atom’s ability to create electricity by running on a hamster wheel.
To make good on their mission statement, instructors run the My Chance to Dance program. Specially designed for kids and adults with physical and developmental disabilities, the program trains up to 3,000 Special Olympics Michigan athletes each year.
When Mark Swift began personal training eight years ago, it was a part-time passion. But his love of fitness so inspired clients that the on-the-side job flourished into a full-time endeavor, Swift Results Personal Training. Mark still whips his clients into shape with a back-to-basics philosophy that relies on high-impact, high-intensity, sweat-inducing workouts. But his services now also encompass in-home sessions, group training, sports training, and Warrior Boot Camp.
From fuchsia-colored walls peppered with inspirational quotes to a staff of motivating instructors, studioFiT curates a high-energy yet encouraging atmosphere for fitness workshops and classes. The studio’s seven-day curriculum blends cardio, toning, and mind-body classes in order to cater to each student’s individual fitness goals, whether they seek improved pliability and balance, or the ability to beat a mongoose in a Zumba dance-off. By keeping class sizes small, studioFiT ensures personalized attention for each student. Firm believers that good exercise health should be shared, the gym also boasts a member-referral program that rewards clients who bring in friends by gifting them a raffle ticket for a chance to win prizes such as class discounts or fitness apparel.
What began in 1975 as one inner-city gym in Highland Park, Michigan, has since evolved into a global health-club organization with locations in 17 different countries. Powerhouse Gym equips weightlifters and cardio bunnies alike with all they’ll ever need to keep—or create—a tight and toned physique. The gym offers equipment outfitted with personal TVs as well as a cast of certified and knowledgeable personal trainers. Depending on location, members will also have access to group fitness classes, such as yoga, Zumba, and Les Mills BodyPump, as well as 24-7 turnkey access to the facility.
Snap Fitness's around-the-clock gyms enable members to work on their physical well-being with a cornucopia of fitness equipment. With 24-hour access, members don't have to let The Man tell them when to help themselves to Snap's strength and cardio equipment, which features built-in TVs and other media diversions. For those who exercise during conventional hours, Snap's friendly, unintimidating atmosphere welcomes patrons of all ability levels, unlike schoolyard dodge-ball squads. Members also enjoy nationwide access to all Snap Fitness locations, ideal for working out while traveling.
For a dose of custom advice, patrons can seek out a personal-training session with a certified coach, who helps them assess and address their fitness goals. Clients reap the benefit of individual attention as a personal trainer helps them tackle weight loss, prepare for an arm-wrestling competition, or unveil the mysteries of arcane cable-weight machines.