It's hard to get out rock climbing regularly. Basketball courts don't fit in the average home. The facilities at The Rush Fitness let everyone get in an exciting workout, though, with climbing walls, pools, athletic courts, and more. At 23 locations in Knoxville, Chattanooga, Dalton, Asheville, Greensboro, Winston Salem, High Point and Greenville, skilled trainers preside over those amenities. They also lead more than 500 group exercise classes, which might touch on everything from yoga to Zumba. Those classes, as well as the requisite array of free weights and cardio equipment, have helped the chain win a range of "best gym" awards.
The back wall at ArtsyU⎯marked by multiple hues sectioned into Mondrianesque blocks of color⎯is an expression of the vibrant ambiance that characterizes the studio. It pops with color, creating a welcoming environment for painters to experiment with their own designs. Visitors come to this artistically designed studio to unleash creativity, often bringing along a bottle of wine to aid in the process. Seated side-by-side on stools, they dip brushes into provided acrylic paints. With an instructor's guidance, they render images that range from a peacock fanning its tail to a flower holding perfectly still.
Hot Yoga Plus's spacious studio is a monument to all things yoga. Instructors lead a wide array of sessions designed to include practitioners of all ages and abilities. They demonstrate meditation, stretching, and windmill-dunk techniques in calming yin-yoga classes and help build strength and stamina in energetic power-yoga classes. Despite the name, studios are both heated and nonheated, and students who want to take their practice further can enroll in teacher training sessions and work towards certification.
At The Artist Studio, a staff of three instructors knows what it’s like to be on the other side of the drawing table. Though they have 45 years of teaching experience between them, Christian Bradford, Claire Bradford, and Skip Lyons have also all spent years studying art and honing their own styles, such as photorealism, classic portraiture, and mixed media. The resident artists turn to their own individual expertise and personable approaches when teaching students, helping guide them toward their own artistic goals.
Brush Paint and Sip's instructors host relaxed painting sessions at homes, offices, and venues such as DeBarge Vineyards & Winery. With step-by-step instructions, they guide students—even absolute beginners—through the brushstrokes required to replicate famous paintings or create portraits of pets. Students can bring their own libations to classes held at Ovella's Mexican Café, buy wine by the bottle at Terra Nostra Tapas & Wine, or just paint a bottle of wine and whisper "wake up" to it until it comes to life.
Sports Barn welcomes students of all skill levels and interests with an array of classes that includes gentle, intensive, and restorative yoga styles. The studio’s robust schedule of sessions helmed by dedicated instructors, focus largely on flow sessions that synchronize gracefully cascading transitions with measured breaths to create an invigorating practice. Power yoga engages limbs with vigorous dynamism as it bolsters strength, stamina, and high-fiving ability. Yin yoga draws thoughts inward with a centering sequence of poses that helps loosen uptight connective tissues with deeply held stretches as students learn to focus on improving their range of motion. Although the studios cushion postures with the necessary yoga mats and props, instructors advise students to purchase their own, as chakras can become territorial over particularly good equipment.