With a name that combines words meaning wholeness, life, and joy, Om'Echaye Wellness & Fitness Center welcomes clients searching for ways to look and feel their best through fitness classes and alternative health treatments. Classes range from Zumba to cycling. Yoga sessions derived from traditions including Iyengar, Kundalini, and Vinyasa soothe minds while building flexibility, and Pilates workouts build the core strength needed for holding up the earth while Atlas is on vacation.
The center also delves into the internal aspects of health and wellness with integrative living programs that run the gamut from dieting and detox to acupuncture and vibrational therapy. Spa services help clients look as good as they feel, aiding relaxation with massages or enhancing exteriors with facials and manicures. The center’s restaurant even helps guests stay on track by dishing up healthy fare made with fresh, natural ingredients, rather than serving preprocessed foods or meats from extinct animals.
Established for more than 30 years, Olympia Gym is more than just a fitness facility with cutting-edge equipment and classes—it's home to family-oriented staffers who truly go out of their way to help others. Owners Delia and Peter Cicale have sought out new and innovative ways to get people into shape, such as Hoist Roc-It machines that adjust to users' movements, kids' karate classes, and Power Plate vibration training that enhances the ability to high-five a jackhammer operator. Their training services are performed by industry experts, including a kickboxing champion and second-degree blackbelt, and they employed Beto Perez as an instructor before he created the international dance-fitness sensation known as Zumba.
But beyond the gym's impressive list of credentials are real, compassionate people. In 1998, the Sun Sentinel documented that the Cicales and their generous aerobics and spinning students raised more than $3,000 in a single Labor Day for the Muscular Dystrophy Association. More recently, the couple hosted three annual events to support breast-cancer awareness. And an article in The Miami Herald reported on two staff members' cross-country bike journey to raise funds for and increase awareness about Parkinson's disease. The trip was planned by Roy Roden, who suffers from the neurodegenerative brain disorder and still works at the gym part time, and his wife Lynn, who is a personal trainer. Gaby Senior specializes in training people with illnesses or age-related concerns such as osteoporosis. Whatever your fitness and health struggles, the gym's down-to-earth crew is likely to understand them.
Lifelong dancer Carmen Garson chose the goddess as the symbol of her fitness studio and boutique because it represents a loving, feminine energy. She aims to channel that energy throughout each of her belly-dancing, flamenco, Bollywood, African-dance, and yoga classes, helping earn her establishment the Hollywood Gazette’s Best Place for Yoga award. Within the wood-floored studio decked out with creations by local artists, she and her team host 33 dance and fitness classes a week.
Garson also opens her space for monthly art and poetry events where women come to share their creativity and boast about how many arms their inner goddesses have. She stocks the on-site boutique with exotic clothing and jewelry, as well as with spiritual books, essential oils candles, and incense.
Amid dim lighting, candles, and soothing music, Ayama Yoga and Healing Arts creates an atmosphere for healing and personal transformation. You can choose from a variety of yoga styles, including energizing flow classes and gentle therapeutic sessions that employ an assortment of props for support. Along with classes, the studio hosts events such as workshops and reiki circles. These and other offerings—including acupuncture, emotional release bodywork, and chakra readings—help clients center their energy and improve wellbeing.
Yoga One houses a team of friendly, experienced yogites who help students sweat and stretch until they're calmer, more energized, and more revitalized. Hatha, Vinyasa, and Anusara classes are offered throughout the week for beginners through advanced practitioners, ensuring that patrons of all experience levels can find a comfortable place to pose. The various classes are packed with a multitude of benefits that will help students subdue snappy muscles, relieve stiffness and pain, increase flexibility and strength, or prepare for future laser-limboing cat burglars.
The semi-private training program at Synergize! makes grueling workouts enjoyable and motivating. Renowned personal trainer and owner, Shondelle Solomon-Miles spent eight years in an underground bunker developing these small group personal training sessions, which include circuit and interval training and focus on fat loss, weight management and body sculpting. Shondelle believes most workouts lack enjoyment, which she remedies by providing fun, creative workouts that, like third-grade marriage proposals, engage students. Whether trying to lose a post-baby bump or striving to work off of the recent holiday hump, the semi-private training program will ensure that Synergizers make headway on their goals, avoid tussles with overeager paparazzi, and live a healthier, more active lifestyle. Offering a variety of classes from morning through evening during the week as well as Saturday mornings, maintaining fitness has never felt so low-maintenance. Consult the Synergize! website for more information.
• For $25, you get a one-month All Y adult membership plus one 30-minute fitness assessment, one 60-minute personal-training session, and three guest passes (a $169 value). • For $39, you get a one-month All Y family membership; one 30-minute fitness assessment and one 60-minute personal-training session per adult (up to two adults); and three guest passes (up to a $291 value).