While teaching jazz dance in the 1960s, Judi Sheppard Missett decided to step away from tradition by offering an experimental class that allowed her students to simply dance without the judgment of mirrors or the constraints of rigid technique. In these sessions, she began infusing popular dance moves with specific fitness workouts to forge a distinctive blend of cardio exercise, strength training, and dance instruction. Little did she know that this “just for fun” class was the prototype for what would become the national fitness sensation known as Jazzercise.
Today, Jazzercise takes its aerobic techniques from a variety of sources that include jazz dance, hip-hop, resistance training, Pilates, yoga, and kickboxing. The class formats, which vary according to different toning goals, are just as diverse as the program's move set. Two-time Dancing with the Stars champion Cheryl Burke is a big fan of the improvisational routines, although her advanced skills aren't needed to get the most out of classes. Instructors cultivate a noncompetitive atmosphere where all exercisers—with the exception of those marked as cursed by jazz-hand palm readers—are welcome regardless of age, build, or fitness background.
Rusty's Rhythm Club's founder, the hyperqualified Rusty Frank, took to dancing at the tender age of 6, and has been light-tripping professionally since her college days. Since then, she has been inducted into the California Swing Dance Hall of Fame and has performed in locations from the Hollywood Bowl to Disneyland and other worldwide locales. Rusty is joined in instruction by her effusive teachers, Ted Stanley and Ron Campbell, who bear multitudinous dancing awards as well as an actual portal to 1920s-1940s America.
They impart the dancing skills of the 1940s at both Rusty's Rhythm Club, a weekly swing dance emporium, and Lindy by the Sea beginning-class series, a dance school for all experience levels. Rusty's Rhythm Club sharpens soles with an all-ages dance fest accompanied by the tunes and Prohibition-era conversational topics of live bands in the air-conditioned Westchester Elks Lodge in Playa del Rey.
Guided by a mission of embracing every student's quest for personal growth, the team at YogaWorks offers programs for all ages and walks of life. Harnessing a minimum of 500 hours of Yoga Alliance training, expert instructors build lean muscles with traditional Ashtanga, Iyengar, and Vinyasa flow classes enhanced by inspiring music, ambient candlelight, meditation, and props. Their fitness classes further the body-shaping results of yoga, strengthening core muscles with Pilates, increasing endurance and lean muscles with TRX classes, and building stamina with resistance-based SculptWorks.
Instructors also host exotic yoga retreats, which marry the excitement of travel to far-away locales with the benefits of yoga to bestow students with the confident grace required to approach a foreign yoga mat without startling it. Those in search of further training can access online videos by subscribing to myyogaworks.com, which offers a free, 14-day trial for new users. Students can search for videos by workout duration, skill level, and the targeted area of the body.
The staff at Touch Institute?which includes certified nursing assistants, massage therapists, pediatric massage therapists, aestheticians, and college graduates from various backgrounds with BA - PhD designations?soothes bodies and minds of all ages with research-based, compassionate therapies. Therapeutic massages draw on Swedish, deep-tissue, and pre- and post-natal techniques, and cranial sacral massage balances the central nervous system, saving clients the bother of checking their brains with a carpenter?s bubble level. Organic ?minence handmade skincare products rejuvenate faces and bodies during a range of skin therapies. To beautify exteriors, aestheticians offer specialty programs such as makeup lessons and natural spray tans.
Committed to giving back to the community, Touch Institute supports the Liddle Kidz Foundation, which sends health-care professionals to orphanages around the world.
Those who learn to dance the sensual Argentine tango from Ilona Glinarsky may find they learn more than just rhythm and footwork. That's because Glinarsky, a dancer and musician since the age of 4, believes that through tango, dancers can learn to live in the moment and communicate more effectively with their partners. At Living Tango?winner of a 2012 Best of Redondo Beach Award for adult education?groups learn to read their partners' movements as they lead or follow, letting their bodies speak to each other through dance.
Those who learn to dance the sensual Argentine tango from Ilona Glinarsky may find they learn more than just rhythm and footwork. That's because Glinarsky, a dancer and musician since the age of 4, believes that through tango, dancers can learn to live in the moment and communicate more effectively with their partners. At Living Tango—winner of a 2012 Best of Redondo Beach Award for adult education—groups learn to read their partners' movements as they lead or follow, letting their bodies speak to each other through dance.