Since its 1965 founding in Venice Beach, California, Gold's Gym has dotted the globe with more than 600 locations where professional athletes and exercise newbies gather under the umbrella of personal strength. Nearly 3.5 million Gold's members chart and aim for their fitness peaks, perspiring beneath the gaze of certified personal trainers or pedaling beside peers at cycling sessions. In a diverse lineup of group classes, patrons strengthen cores with Pilates, finger-paint pictures of ninjas in martial arts, and amp up heart rates along to the pulsating soundtracks of Les Mills routines. Many Gold's Gym locations stockpile futuristic amenities, such as cardio machines with individual iPod docks and televisions that help keep patrons motivated.
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The inspiring trainers at each MetaBody location lead troops of workouteers in results-oriented workouts several times weekly. Sweat sessions utilize a variety of exercises and disciplines to produce full-body results in a supportive environment, ideal for beginners and hard-core core-hardeners alike. During any class, motivational instructors will use the instinctual distrust of routine to their advantage. Begin a day of litigating with a refreshing early-morning boot-camp session, or wind down by burning evidence and pounds with a late-evening yoga class. Muscles are kept guessing with new and challenging moves during each session, so participants never fall into a boring, ineffective routine, such as regular teeth brushing. In addition to the fitness classes, students receive a success guide to help prepare for imminent pound loss, a nutrition guide, and a $100 gift certificate for individual coaching. Because the pass sets a 5 or 10-class cap at any given location, roving fitness mavens can further shake up their workout regimens by vetting a series of classes or instructors that work best for them.
An interconnected system of energy and communication, the human body can experience a variety of chronic pains and illnesses. That’s where licensed acupuncturists like Neida Caseres step in. Neida—who spent years culling knowledge of metaphysics, spiritual-response therapy, and forgiveness therapy—is not only a licensed acupuncturist but also a reiki master. At the Oriental Medicine Healing Center at Life Force, she treats clients of all ages during one-on-one therapeutic sessions. Using hair-thin, sterile needles, Neida can unblock obstructions in the body’s energy flow—an important step in soothing maladies such as chronic pain, migraines, ADD/ADHD, insomnia, and depression.
Brazilian Jiu Jitsu instructor and Navy Corpsman Noel Smith trained under luminaries such as Master Renato Tavares and Roberto Marques DaSilva. These teachers instilled in him a deep respect for and mastery of Brazilian Jiu Jitsu. With exercises that build a powerful mind-body connection while burning calories, this hard-hitting martial art empowers students of nearly any body type or fitness level to efficiently take down an attacker, neutralize an opponent in matches, and deliver a devastating leg-sweep to lingering self-doubt.
In addition to classes in his chosen discipline, Noel's studio also hosts other forms of martial arts training. Thai kickboxing classes help students bolster their self-defense skills while building speed and stamina, and kids' martial arts courses promote discipline and leading a healthy lifestyle. The studio's fitness boot camp draws together a supportive community of fellow athletes as they tone muscles and work away fat in a fun, supportive environment.
Optimism is contagious at Positive Vibes Fitness, a personal-training studio where clients tackle physical challenges with upbeat attitudes and functional fitness tools. David E. Cox, an ACE-certified personal trainer, helps clients locate the greatness that lies within and turn it into fuel for fun, challenging workouts. Many of his charges train in groups of two or more, which lets them cheer each other toward goals such as losing weight, boosting sports performance, and successfully arm wrestling the Statue of Liberty. Heavy objects such as kettlebells and battling ropes fortify limbs and cores, and TRX suspension-training straps build full-body strength and flexibility with body-weight exercises that can be tailored to nearly any fitness level. To help clients melt calories and stress, the studio also hosts group fitness classes, including dance-inspired routines filled with salsa, hip-hop, and reggaeton tunes.