Owner Elise Matthews started K.O.R.E. Wellness when she was 25, hoping to use her background as a semipro goalie to help people to live fitter, pain-free lives. With the belief that impersonal machines can never match the overall core-strengthening benefits of resistance exercises, she trains clients to become aware of how their bodies move. She draws on a litany of certifications, a master's degree in exercise physiology from USC, and recognition from Dragon Door as a level 2 Russian-kettlebell instructor, or the second in a series of nesting Russian-kettlebell instructors.
Each week, the sporty scientist leads many of the more than 30 classes held at her facility. She takes a break from wringing sweat from her clients to provide postural assessments and nutritional counseling, enlisting the help of massage therapist Micheal Burkett and yoga instructor Jenny Prather to ply their relaxing and healing trades at the gym.
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Mankind was never meant to breathe underwater, but the instructors at Columbia Scuba defy such limitations, helping students of all sorts—from small children to disabled adults—explore the forbidden depths. As young as 8, kids can start training with PADI Bubblemaker classes, using equipment suited to their smaller size, and swimmers of all ages can join Discover Scuba sessions to learn the basics of diving in the safety of a pool. For students looking to become certified divers, open-water diving and specialty diving courses test practical skills in unique environments, such as submerged shipwrecks filled with sunken coupons, whereas trips to the Florida springs or Cozumel convey the majestic experience of communing up close with marine wildlife.
In Brickhouse Gym’s 12,000-square-foot exercise emporium, clients can sweat solo on cardio equipment, hoist barbells in strength-training areas, or hone muscles in more than 30 group fitness sessions each week. Specialized practice domains, focusing on disciplines such as circuit training, agility, and free weights, help muscle masons zero in on particular skills, and a spinning room stocked with stationary bicycles amuses hamsters bored with predictable habitat wheels. Exercisers can also get in touch with nature by working out on a turf floor or can let playful breezes wick away their sweat in the open-air room. Alternatively, spirited instructors help students cultivate flexibility, increase endurance, or prepare for cage matches with stubborn garden weeds with a variety of fitness classes in disciplines such as yoga and mixed martial arts.
At Snap Fitness’ 24-hour gym, guests come and go armed with their access keys and are able to work out at their convenience. Around the gym, rows of cardio machines and stacks of free weights stand by as personal trainers show guests the most efficient ways to pump iron and bench-press their old refrigerators.
The Harbison Community Association provides a venue for community members to work out and form bonds with their neighbors. The center maintains an indoor heated pool, a jacuzzi, and a baby pool. Members can build strength in the weight room and challenge their friends to a game on the racquetball court.
Wella Professionals School pampers heads with eye-catching coifs administered by student stylists who work under the supervision of licensed instructors. In the impressively large and open space, guests can choose their preferred treatment from the style menu, such as an invigorating shampoo and blow-dry for an instant makeover ideal for job interviews or before interviewing potential dates in a bleakly lit warehouse ($10). Student scissor wizards snip unruly locks into sleekly styled cranial carpets, and a licensed instructor calmly offers professional advice ($10). For a revamped color scheme or to mask the aftermath of late-night leopard-spot hair tattoos, guests can choose to douse tresses in a single process color ($25–$35) or sprinkle light-catching strands among already luminous follicles with partial high or low lights ($25).