Bridges Rock Gym may bill itself as a bouldering facility, but climbing is really just the headliner on its lineup of fitness-oriented offerings. Adventurers can navigate from the 18-foot wall's indoor bouldering surfaces to the designated area for slacklining, a sport akin to tight-rope walking that trains balance, body awareness, and agility. Off the wall, visitors enjoy use of treadmills and rowing machines, all of which prepares them for the final send-off: a visit to the hot sauna followed directly by a cafe smoothie.
As they enter the training at Curves, female guests come face-to-face with the smiles of other women. And just as points on a circle share a common distance from the circle's center, workout participants share the experiences of those nearby, trading stations throughout the 30-minute training session. One minute is spent on a piece of strength-training equipment built for feminine frames and designed to work two opposing muscle groups with a single movement. Exercisers then move on to a recovery station, where they run, jog, or dance to maintain heart rates and keep platforms in place during momentary losses of gravity.
Vara Healing Arts helps clients relax and recuperate from injury or stress in three ways. Their instructors teach several different styles of yoga including ashtanga, hatha flow, and vinyasa; and their classes aim to calm the mind, ease discomfort, and strengthen the body. Licensed massage therapists perform more than two dozen specialty and advanced body treatments from acupuncture and aromatherapy massage to crystal therapy and reflexology. Finally, the relaxation center features eight-person saunas, where raised temperatures can induce sweating that purifies the skin, purges toxins from the body, and exercises lazy sweat glands.
Founders Kara Collier and Jasmine Buczek wanted to create a place where anyone could dedicate themselves to health and fitness. To do that, they drew up a recipe that included certified trainers able to work with people of all fitness levels, ages, and experience; an inviting space equipped with all high-end weight and cardio training equipment; and a dash of stylish locker rooms with showers. Next, they mixed in some Classes including spinning, yoga, and Aeroba-cize, which uses dance moves to build overall strength.
In 2005 they they threw the whole thing in the oven and baked up All In One Fitness. There, they make overall health the focus. Every new member gets a comprehensive fitness assessment and accurate BMI measurements. Once clients get into their regimen, trainers start regularly tracking changes with the Integrated functional Coaching System to keep goals in sight. All In One Fitness also offers weight loss programs and personal training complete with packages tailored to each client's requirement. The fitness gurus work one-on-one or with small groups to hone in on weight loss, prepare them for running a marathon, or just start off on the path to living a healthier lifestyle.
The next time you're on the roof of a five-story building, look down at the ground, and you'll get a rough idea of just how high people climb at Touchstone Climbing. The gym's seven locations feature lead walls that rise as high as 50 feet off the ground, though height isn't the only dimension that makes the space feel immense. Each spot has at least 11,000 square feet of climbing terrain, not to mention as much as 3,000 square feet of bouldering.
To prevent newcomers from feeling intimidated by the magnitude of the environment, the gym holds introductory classes. During these sessions, participants learn the basic techniques they'll need if they want to conquer the gym's crack systems and boulder problems. The classes are also an opportunity for students to scope out the terrain features at each location, such as Diablo Rock Gym's steep prow, which juts out crookedly like a thumbs up from a dizzy ballerina. While they're at it, the visitors might notice something else: the social nature of the gym. As the San Francisco Chronicle recounts, the fact that lead climbs require two people means that climbers are constantly asking around for new partners and chatting back and forth as they ascend.
Each location also boasts a weight room, cardio machines, and a studio space for everything from yoga to spinning to core classes.