With machines set up in rows to encourage competition, many ordinary gyms cater to men's bodies and psychology, right down to the urinals that were "accidentally" installed in the women's locker room. At Curves, you'll move around a circuit of hydraulic resistance machines that have been designed to work with women's bodies and promote weight loss, protect against osteoporosis, and deal with arthritis. An experienced trainer is always nearby to help manage your machine maneuvering and your muscle making. Instead of fiddling with weight stacks and losing your momentum, the hydraulic machines use your body weight and fitness level to create resistance that matches your abilities, decreasing the risk of soreness or injury. Because traditional lift-and-lower motions create bulky muscles, each machine uses push-and-pull motions to create toned, lean muscles perfect for crushing a grapefruit without looking like you can.
Falling Waters Day Spa & Salon combines nature, technology, and ample amounts of relaxing touch to beautify and de-stress patrons. As a full-service day spa and salon, Falling Waters offers a complete range of services and products including skincare, haircare, makeup, and massage. The 30-minute refresher facial includes a skin analysis, cleansing, masque, and finishing cream that leaves skin feeling renewed and bright ($50). Certified massage therapists banish anxiety with a 50-minute Swedish massage, which soothes muscles and drains away stress, both physical and metaphysical ($65). For important festivities such as birthdays, proms, and baby’s first tax audit, a special-event and wedding styling will leave manes looking poised and polished ($45), and an expert makeup application will bring out natural beauty with professional techniques and magic apples ($25). Coddle your cuticles with a traditional manicure ($25) or a luxurious spa pedicure, which includes soak, callus smoothing, sugar scrub, heated foot mask, foot massage, paraffin dip, and polish ($55).
Trainer Chelsea Rupp warns all her potential students that CrossFit might become an addiction. When she first started training five years ago, she was astounded and enthralled by its challenging and effective workouts, and was instantly hooked. After receiving her Level 1 CrossFit certification, Chelsea and her partners founded her own CrossFit gym?CrossFit GSL?where she and a team of enthusiastic trainers lead students of all levels in the high-intensity, ever-changing routines. Surrounded by the colorful flags and bright walls of their studio, the trainers guide students through warm-ups and functional workouts, scaling the drills' intensity to accommodate varying fitness levels. They encourage each student to push past their previously set boundaries as they heave barbells and kettlebells, jump rope, hop on large wood blocks, and toss medicine balls. The supportive instructors dole out nutritional guidance as well as postworkout recovery tips, such as techniques for therapeutic stretches and tips for mending shirts torn apart by bulging muscles.
Square 1 Fitness' 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 Square's strength and cardio equipment, which features built-in TVs and other media diversions. For those who exercise during conventional hours, Square's friendly, un-intimidating 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.
Since its 1965 founding in Venice Beach, California, Gold's Gym has dotted the globe with more than 600 locations where professional athletes and exercise newbies gather under the umbrella of personal strength. Nearly 3.5 million Gold's members chart and aim for their fitness peaks, perspiring beneath the gaze of certified personal trainers or pedaling beside peers at cycling sessions. In a diverse lineup of group classes, patrons strengthen cores with Pilates, finger-paint pictures of ninjas in martial arts, and amp up heart rates along to the pulsating soundtracks of Les Mills routines.
Many Gold's Gym locations stockpile futuristic amenities, such as cardio machines with individual iPod docks and televisions that help keep patrons motivated.
Begun in 2001 as a small fitness operation in the basement of an office building, Pure Barre has since blossomed into a widely acclaimed, widely publicized approach to exercise with a nationwide following. Dancer, choreographer, and fitness buff Carrie Rezabek Dorr founded Pure Barre more than a decade ago in Birmingham, MI. Much like angering a wizard, performing the Pure Barre technique can be a fast and effective way to transform your body. Motivating music plays during the 60-minute workouts, each of which uses a ballet barre and small isometric movements designed to burn fat and tone muscles.