At CrossFit Full Circle, dedicated coaches motivate students to get into the best shape of their lives. They’re guided by the no-nonsense workout ethic of CrossFit, a system that focuses on constantly varied functional exercises executed at high intensity. The gym's personal trainers draw from a wealth of experiences and certifications—owner Jason Struck is working on a master's degree in exercise physiology, and coach Matt Bahen boasts a background in serving with elite units in the navy⎯as they lead boot camps and exercises such as hurling kettlebell weights and performing pull-up reps. In order to build muscle, burn fat, and shake houseguests' hands firmly but not so firmly that they lose their arms, members use top-shelf equipment, weights, and bumper plates from brands such as Pendlay, Rogue, Kraiburg, and Dragon Door, all under the constant encouragement of a like-minded community of fellow athletes.
Combat Sports Center sprawls across 10,000 square feet of space—and it doesn't let an inch go to waste. An elevated, regulation-sized boxing ring hosts rounds of sparring, and a pair of separate workout areas give MMA fighters a chance to practice grappling techniques on premium wresting mats and striking on firmer combo mats. Gym members can work on their form with a variety of bags, including speed bags, a wall-mounted hook and uppercut bag, and six-foot banana bags. Combat Sports Center offers a variety of small group fitness classes including CrossFit, TRX and Combat Conditioning which combines cardio and circuit training and one-on-one Personal Training. Even with all of its training space and equipment, Combat Sports Center's most valuable commodity is knowledge. It's combat conditioning class instructors boast decades of combined experience in various fitness fields. They lead adults through classes in Muay Thai kickboxing, mixed martial arts, and boxing, and they teach younger students the fundamentals of karate and wrestling.
At Shockoe Bottom CrossFit, the focus is always on the functional cross-training exercises that make up each CrossFit workout. In the spartan 5,000-square-foot space, Shockoe Bottom CrossFit's trainers show newbies the ropes during Fundamentals classes, and everyone gets the chance to tackle the constantly changing Workout of the Day. Classes are capped at eight or twelve to ensure more personalized attention, with each exercise scalable to a person's physical abilities. Aside from CrossFit classes, the facility also offers yoga classes, strength programming, and mobility seminars.
Owner Ben Donovan and his team of Level-1 certified instructors at CrossFit Krijger lead exercisers through functional workouts that help clients build a broad base of fitness. The gym culture is one of continuous improvement, encouraging participants to sweat more, push themselves harder, and taunt their reflections more adamantly with every exercise in their Workout of the Day, or WOD. This ever-changing regimen might include Olympic weightlifting, gymnastics, or cardio exercises on a single visit, all designed to sculpt physiques and generate improvement on a variety of fitness categories?including endurance, power, and agility.
Phyzique Fight School's martial arts instructors are no strangers to combat. Brazilian jiu-jitsu instructor Carlos David Oliverira is a 3rd-degree black belt and multi-time champion in his home country, while muay thai instructor Ani Hilditch has held the World Kickboxing Association's super strawweight belt since 2012. However, they also know that martial arts training offers benefits that go far beyond the ability to take down an opponent. No matter what discipline they choose, students will find themselves challenged both physically and mentally during each engaging lesson. In addition to increasing their strength and agility, students as young as 16 will also boost their confidence and hone their discipline, positive traits that often extend to performance at work and school.
While everyone involved in CrossFit appreciates its effectiveness in achieving a full-body workout, Billy and Emily of CrossFit Gloucester also love it for the community atmosphere it fosters. As trainers they inspire members to get fit using CrossFit’s daily workouts comprised of functional, everyday movements. It’s the participants, themselves, that also encourage each other as they stick together to reach their fitness goals. Some of those exercises they help each other with include backward medicine ball toss, flipping tractor tires end-to-end, and trotting out laps with sandbags on their shoulders.