After absorbing core Pilates principles from Stott & Balanced Body, head instructor Fran gathered a crew of yoga, Pilates, and ACE–certified fitness masters to oversee the classes at Coreworks Fitness. Fran and her staff run two levels of mat classes, as well as two levels of reformer classes in a separate studio dedicated to the foundational apparatus. Students may also stretch their abilities on more advanced apparatuses, including the CoreAlign, which heightens the cardiovascular element of Pilates, as well as improves posture and balance. Coreworks Fitness is also an authorized Balanced Body University training center. The studio's academy equips aspiring instructors with pedagogical techniques and even extends its kinesthetic expertise to the performing arts, with body-aligning workshops for Irish dance instructors.
LA Boxing’s fight-centric gyms ditch the polished look of wood-floored workout studios for gritty, competitive spaces filled with 150-pound punching bags and intense workouts. Like a baker molding gingerbread men, LA Boxing sculpts six-packs with boxing, kickboxing, and mixed-martial-arts classes. Although instructors and students agree that the gym’s atmosphere may enkindle intimidation in first-time attendees, most experience boosted self-confidence after conquering their first class. Private training sessions further stoke courage with workouts that leave patrons with the exhilaration of having survived 12 rounds in the ring or five minutes in a high-school lunchroom.
The staff at Top Shape Fitness, led by principal trainer George Tyler, believes that expert guidance is key to workouts. To that end, the fitness center focuses entirely on personal-training sessions and group fitness classes. The company's freakishly strong roots lie in its signature cardio kickboxing class, known as GT Box. In these sessions, trainers blend kickboxing movements with dumbbell training, plyometrics, and other toning exercises. Elsewhere on the weekly schedule, Latin music plays during Zumba sessions, minds and bodies meld in yoga classes, and TRX suspension classes employ equipment developed by US Navy SEALs.
Let There Be Rock School disproves the cynical idiom, "Those who can, do; those who can't, teach." with instructors who are working rock musicians. All of them are well-versed in performance and eager to coach young, aspiring stars. During weekly one-on-one lessons, they help students with their playing and stage presence, preparing them for the school's version of a recital: a concert at a local music venue.
Their mentorship is only one part of the curriculum, however. After being sorted into a band, students rehearse and jam with their teammates under the guidance of a band manager. When they aren't working on their songs, they retire to the Rock Lounge, where members can watch movies and study Pete Townshend's windmill technique in super slow-motion.
Kids can sign up for one of two Let There Be Rock School programs. The All Access Lesson Program is meant for beginning musicians, and familiarizes them with an instrument. More advanced students enroll in the VIP All Access Performance program, which focuses on music theory and includes band practice.
Free weights, strength-training machines, and cardio equipment galore help guests at American Fitness Express get into physical shape. Instructors lead classes ranging from yoga to kickboxing to Zumba, and they even offer one-on-one attention during personal-training sessions. Added bonuses at the gym include private showers, WiFi, and childcare during select classes.
Though Synergy Pilates & Yoga has the spacious rooms, owner Charmaine Gordon keeps class-sizes small. This gives each participant focused attention from her team of trained instructors. Charmaine is a classically-trained Pilates instructor herself and has spent 20 years helping others stay fit, both at her Pilates and yoga studio, as well as at Synergy Women's Fitness, which she has owned and operated for 22 years with her husband, Rod.