With machines set up in rows to encourage competition, many ordinary gyms cater to men's bodies and psychology, right down to the urinals that were "accidentally" installed in the women's locker room. At Curves, you'll move around a circuit of hydraulic resistance machines that have been designed to work with women's bodies and promote weight loss, protect against osteoporosis, and deal with arthritis. An experienced trainer is always nearby to help manage your machine maneuvering and your muscle making. Instead of fiddling with weight stacks and losing your momentum, the hydraulic machines use your body weight and fitness level to create resistance that matches your abilities, decreasing the risk of soreness or injury. Because traditional lift-and-lower motions create bulky muscles, each machine uses push-and-pull motions to create toned, lean muscles perfect for crushing a grapefruit without looking like you can.
A septuplet of subjects form the core of Seven Arts Center's curricula: the visual arts, literature, theater, multimedia, health, martial arts, and cooking. Through their daily classroom programs and radio station, Seven Arts Radio, the center?s teachers help adults and children across Atlanta develop into the kind of renaissance people rarely seen since Pablo Picasso made his action-movie debut. Painting classes can take the form of structured multisession courses for aspiring artists, or casual one-time events for those simply looking for a new hobby. Other classes give students tips on using computers, playing music, or passing the GED.
The seasoned paint-slingers at The Blu' Bisque turn the art of pottery and canvas embellishment into a lively celebration with their kids' birthday parties, BYOB date nights for adults, and corporate events that emphasize carefree fun, uninhibited creativity, and paint-speckled aprons. The shop's hefty collection of bisque pieces anchors the floor with plates, coffee mugs, and figurines that wait patiently to be plucked and festooned with stencil designs, free-flowing brushstrokes, and floral motifs that symbolize the end of tax season. Not just an art studio, The Blu? Bisque also houses an upscale boutique that offers trendy gifts and accessories as well as brand-name apparel.
?So many people go through life looking at things without really seeing them,? muses Mary Buck, founder of Studio 2.8. Her mission as a teacher is twofold: to help her pupils see things and to help them share what they see with others. ?Photography lets you paint with light,? she tells her classes, ?but you have to go in with a vision.? She gives her pupils the tools to realize their visions during workshops that delve into all facets of digital photography, from the basics of adjusting f-stop to the advanced skills needed to capture a delicious smell of pixels.
It isn't surprising that Buck is a photography teacher; photography runs in her blood. Both of her siblings and her sister-in-law are skilled photographers, and she's been aiming her own lens at subjects since she was just 18. As a professional, her talent for catching dimples and laughter has led to portraits that families can pass down to new generations or Earth-conquering aliens. Seventeen years after starting her own studio, her passion for the art form has only grown, and her enthusiasm for sharing what she calls ?that fire in my belly? with her students still burns strong.
The instructors at All Life is Yoga teach Purna Yoga, a discipline that encompasses not just movement, but an entire lifestyle. This holistic approach combines classes with meditation, philosophy, and even diet?there are cleanse programs that coincide with the teachings in the studio. The discipline aims to address every aspect of well-being in its efforts to help adherents live more joyful lives.
Instructor Rutu Chaudhari, began her yoga studies in 1999 and has a 2000 hour certification with additional training in therapeutics and meditation. She administers yoga therapy to clients with injuries or ailments, ranging from hip replacements to fibromyalgia. Rutu?director of the College of Purna Yoga in Atlanta?has taught at the Southeast Yoga Conference for the past three years. She has also assisted yoga master Aadil Palkhivala with workshops and teacher training.
Asiya Khasnutdinova knows the dance world. As a five-time Latin dance champion in her native Russia and top-20 contestant on So You Think You Can Dance, she'd mastered the combination of artistry and strength needed to wow her crowds. However, she also knew it would take more than just dedication to own a dance and health club. So in order to realize this dream, she decided to partner with her mother, enlisting Svetlana Khasnutdinova's experience running her own medical practice.
The result? Valeo Dance Fitness Studio, where Asiya helps clients lose weight and have fun during dance-based cardio classes that incorporate elements of strength training, interval work, and resistance exercises. These ValeoFit 1000 workouts help clients burn up to 1,000 calories and tone their entire bodies through dance routines that may include weighted hula hoops, weights, and resistance bands. When muscles get weary after workouts, clients can also pick up a Valeo Beauty Bar, an all-natural skin care product designed by Svetlana to ease away pent-up toxins and bust stubborn cellulite.