Fueled by Joseph Pilates' belief that exercise should enhance and support the natural machinery of the human body, instructors lead students through a tapestry of intense, focused moves that draw from weight training, aerobics, yoga, and tai chi. In addition to leading group mat classes aimed at boosting core strength, they stock their hardwood studio with machines such as Cadillacs, ladder barrels, and reformers that rely on handles, ropes, and pulleys to heighten the workouts. The staffers offer semi-private and private lessons that focus exclusively on these reformer machines, which each face their own mirror so practitioners can perfect their poses and James Cagney impersonations simultaneously. To liven up the floor routines, they sometimes combine elements of TRX suspension training or ballet-barre workouts, both excellent complements to the intense core work of Pilates.
If Mother Nature could design a building, it might look something like The Yoga Factory. Sunlight and bird song filter through frosted-glass windows. Trees dapple the walls with shadows and breezes rustle their leaves as the humans inside the studio draw their own deep breaths. Experienced instructors siphon inspiration from this natural beauty, filling the space with enough low-toned chants to befriend even the shiest bullfrog. Under their guidance, yogis of all levels build strength and flexibility during alignment-focused Hatha and Vinyasa classes. The temperature rises to 88 degrees for Hot-Yasa sessions, loosening tight muscles as students practice back bends, arm balances, and inversions atop matted floors. To help yogis hold poses for extended periods of time, teachers may incorporate props such as blocks and blankets during calming restorative routines.
In addition to melting stress with yoga classes, The Yoga Factory helps exercisers torch calories with boot camps and Zumba cardio-dance parties. Upon request, personal trainers can tailor workouts to goals such as losing weight, increasing strength, or finally besting an overly aggressive boxing shadow.
A PGA member since 1986, Chuck Mayhew employs a fundamentals-first teaching methodology, thoroughly familiarizing students with the basics of swing mechanics before moving on to more complicated tweaks. Though certain golf tenets are universal, Mayhew knows that any single teaching method won't work for every player. Some are visual learners, some learn by repetition, and still others can only learn when a cast of singing hand puppets teaches them. Private lessons begin with an assessment of each player's current ball positioning, alignment, and swing posture—key components that must be corrected before beginning any backswing. Mayhew conducts lessons at Four Seasons Golf & Fitness Center, a full-service indoor golf-instruction facility that can stay open despite rain or bunker sandstorms.