After spending more than 20 years training civilians and designing workouts for the military, Ira Wenze opened his own 4,000-square-foot fitness center to bring the rapid benefits of boot camp to locals. Registered as an elite trainer through the International Sports Sciences Association, as well as a fitness therapist and performance-nutrition specialist, Wenze designs intense group workouts that offer far more support than exercising next to balloon animals. Fellow certified trainers include D-Bo, a specialist in boxing and mixed martial arts, and Brian Hannah, a former fitness instructor for the Navy. Alongside ever-changing workouts that incorporate weights, medicine balls, kettlebells, and TRX suspension equipment, supportive instructors deliver sound nutritional advice that emphasizes health and energy over dieting. Coaches demonstrate their zeal for progress by taking regular fitness assessments that check in on individual progress, draft new goals, and quiz participants on the metallic properties of free weights.
Unlike many big-box gyms, Club II has the whole family in mind. In addition to offering fitness services and health coaching for grownups, they host youth camps and daycare services for the kids. They up the ante with tennis and swim lessons, as well as social activities.
Long-time Gulf Breeze resident and aesthetician Brenda Bloom teams up with board-certified physician Dr. William Walter Goldsmith to help reinvigorate complexions at Bloom Medical Spa. Certificates of medical achievements line the beauty haven's ivory interior, where stylists, massage therapists, and nail techs pamper guests with customized services—including body wraps and paraffin treatments. Clients can saunter through the intimate salon and spa, which is draped with colorful artwork and baroque couches sheathed in rich plum fabrics, to private treatment rooms. To help ensure personalized care, Dr. Goldsmith takes the time to consult with clients about their medical history and challenges them to games of no-holds-barred tic-tac-toe.
With a complete line of Life Fitness and Cybex machines, the Pensacola branch of World Gym upholds the franchise's relentless tradition of providing 24/7 access to fitness. Each device in the cardio stable is hooked up to a personal cable TV and DVD set, allowing runners to finally live out their dreams of running wind sprints through aisle 7 of the electronics store. Conversely, an outdoor workout area beckons the ruggedly inclined with battling ropes and climbing stations. Instructors lead a medley of aerobics and yoga classes, and personal trainers help members to craft their own custom fitness plans.
With one foot planted in traditional martial-arts pedagogy and the other roundhouse-kicking modern sports science, Tiger Rock Taekwondo Academy schools limbs with fast-paced, total-body fitness classes. The health-and-fitness program consists of YogaFit and Kisado, which blends martial arts, yoga, and nutritional counseling to build up the whole body and tone each strand of hair on the head. Martial arts classes for adults and kids cover counter aggressive forms such as taekwondo and hanmudo, a style based on grappling and takedowns.
Head instructor and Rising Star Theatre Arts Award recipient Dan Begin helps dancers of all ages and skill levels learn how to twirl, dip, and spin. Lessons for individuals and couples cover the basics of a variety of dance styles including tango, cha-cha, and salsa. In addition, Dance Unlimited offers wedding programs to help couples create memorable first dances that do not involve doing the worm in a wedding dress.