The staff at Family Fitness Centers recognizes that good health and smart fitness habits often get their start at home. To help nurture a healthier regimen for the entire family, the gym has three locations throughout the Tampa Bay region, each with a number of programs designed to educate members on nutrition or jump-start metabolisms with boot camp and group fitness classes. Kids Club, or child care, is offered at all locations, while select locations offer pediatrician-supervised programs that help kids stay healthy by incorporating group exercise, emphasizing taking daily vitamins, and teaching kids how to cut an apple with only their mental prowess. Senior programs are also available and personal trainers are on hand to offer one-on-one sessions for more personalized attention.
At Shapes Total Fitness for Women, the instructors strive to make working out as easy and fun as possible. That's why—in addition to providing access to free weights and cardio machines—they host more than 67 group training sessions per week, with options ranging from yoga to indoor cycling. That way, clients can get in shape using whatever means work best for them. Some of the eclectic classes have zero impact on joints, too—specifically the ones in the on-site pool. These include 45-minute water cardio classes and versatile aqua aerobics sessions, which are ideal for athletes with arthritis and other special needs. The most completely flexible workouts at the gym, however, are the personal training sessions. The one-on-one workouts are designed purely around the client's goals, whether she wants to lose weight or grow strong enough to carry her favorite dumbbell home with her.
Registered yoga teachers Janel Norton and Christina Lowden mix up their years of exercise experience with their passion for alternative healing methods for a yoga stew chock-full of therapeutic benefits. Whether helping students striking their first tentative poses in beginner-friendly Hatha yoga classes or pushing patrons’ muscles to the brink during the hot power yoga series, Janel and Christina create a safe, friendly atmosphere through strong guidance and focused instruction. In addition to power, restorative, Hatha, and Yin yoga classes, they host Pilates mat-work sessions that bolster cores and 30-minute Body Blast classes that send students moving through time-tested, old-school routines—such as squats, pushups, and Model T flipping—to build muscle and character.
At Flow Yoga, it's all about the individual. That's why every class is small, which is ideal for personalized attention so the experienced teachers can modify poses and help as necessary. Whether students are in a heated class, detox, or gentle yoga session, each person is encouraged to work at his or her own pace. Along with regular yoga and Pilates classes inside the studio, some classes move outside, weather permitting. Other services at the wellness center include massages, personal training, nails, and facials.
The waterfront tiki bar at Mango Cove has a nice view of the sunset—sit down outside and you can enjoy colorful, inventive sushi as the sky turns shades of peach and pink. Among the restaurant’s specialties are the surf and turf roll, which has seared tenderloin over tempura shrimp and spicy tuna, and the buffalo chicken roll, which features buffalo chicken, carrots, celery, and ranch dressing.
The restaurant also lets guests see what it’s like behind the sushi bar in its sushi-making classes. In each class, you’ll sip wine and learn to roll slices of fish in seaweed and rice by hand, instead of stuffing the ingredients in a paper towel tube and shaking it around.
Balanced Therapy’s trained therapists cast out stress and discomfort with an array of massage techniques. The ashiatsu massage employs the firm compressions of a therapist’s bare feet to appease backs harboring deep pockets of stress or collections of outdated phonebooks. Dorsal walkers balance between two bars to apply as much pressure as possible for more effective toe kneads and deeper bodywork. Spines tired from failed heists of the Liberty Bell can ease aches with the tension-melting hot-stone treatment, which delivers care packages of warmth to deep tissue. The spread of multisensory muscle kneads also includes relaxation and prenatal massages. The studio’s intimate setting swaddles guests in calm with minimalist décor, private treatment rooms, and a colorful mural of koi fish.