After beginning his career as a professional soccer player, Richard Lopez spent time as a fitness model before settling into life as a personal trainer. Holding a degree in kinesiology, Sandy Lopez put her education to use while winning the title of Miss California, competing for the title of Miss Galaxy, and recommending workouts on Good Morning America. The two now combine forces at Club Fitness Addiction, where they help clients and members sculpt new physiques through a robust selection of classes and services.
Within their 8,000 sq. ft. facility, classes ranging from ballet barre and Pilates to spinning sessions help exercisers immolate calories in a supportive group setting. Members don’t have to wait for class times to hit the gym, instead making use of the ample exercise equipment whenever it suits their schedule. The gym is also equipped with a hair salon, day spa, massage therapist, and free wi-fi, making it a one-stop shop for physical needs such as downloading a new skill into one’s brain.
Yoga Shakti Wellness Center's director, Diana Pipaloff, has unwavering confidence in her instructors' abilities. It's appropriate, because most of them learned their practice at the center. Their 500-hour training program, which includes post-graduate mentorships and internships, equips graduates with Yoga Alliance registration. Once trained, a select few of these yogis begin work at Yoga Shakti Wellness Center's locations in Irvine and Huntington Beach.
At each location, students stretch and breathe during more than 10 types of yoga classes. Shakti yoga, the center's flagship style, leads participants in combining sun salutations, poses, and energy work to move toward increasing their physical and spiritual strength. Other options from the more than 100 classes offered each week include prenatal yoga and gentle yoga, which elucidates yoga's foundational poses and philosophy.
However, the staff isn't super-glued to their yoga mats. They also teach ayurveda, a lifestyle that combines dietary changes with massage, meditation, and other purification therapies.
Guided by a mission of embracing every student's quest for personal growth, the team at YogaWorks offers programs for all ages and walks of life. Harnessing a minimum of 500 hours of Yoga Alliance training, expert instructors build lean muscles with traditional Ashtanga, Iyengar, and Vinyasa flow classes enhanced by inspiring music, ambient candlelight, meditation, and props. Their fitness classes further the body-shaping results of yoga, strengthening core muscles with Pilates, increasing endurance and lean muscles with TRX classes, and building stamina with resistance-based SculptWorks.
Instructors also host exotic yoga retreats, which marry the excitement of travel to far-away locales with the benefits of yoga to bestow students with the confident grace required to approach a foreign yoga mat without startling it. Those in search of further training can access online videos by subscribing to myyogaworks.com, which offers a free, 14-day trial for new users. Students can search for videos by workout duration, skill level, and the targeted area of the body.
Watching some of the lithe women coming out of Pure Barre classes, it's easy to believe that they've been ballet dancers their whole lives. But that's not necessarily the case. Pure Barre's instructors stress that the workout requires zero dance experience, and they say that as long as you can hold onto the bar and quote Center Stage verbatim, you can participate in the classes.
Because small isometric movements are performed in the classes, women of all shapes, sizes, and ages can take a Pure Barre class. These small movements work each muscle to fatigue, and then stretch it back out, which creates the lean lines dancers are known for. The movements also work areas of the body many women struggle with, including the abs, butts, thighs, and arms, and they burn fat?all without putting excessive stress on the joints.
Accommodating students of all skill levels, each class at Bikram Yoga Huntington Beach is built around a series of two breathing exercises and 26 postures. Trained in an intensive course at the Bikram Yoga College of India, certified instructors lead pupils through the requisite poses during each 90-minute session. Classes unfold atop anti-microbial and anti-slip Flotex flooring inside a studio kept precisely at 105 degrees and 40% humidity. Complimentary towel services await students after every session, as do refreshing showers and the health drinks, clothing, or mats available for purchase at the studio's retail shop.
Stationary bikes have been a staple in fitness centers for years, but Sweat Hb puts a twist on the traditional workout. The studio's RealRyder bikes simulate an actual bike ride by allowing riders to steer and lean into imaginary turns and ring imaginary bike bells for a more intense regimen. The same goes for their Pilates circuit classes, where instructors lead you through a series of exercises that employ springboard and TRX machines. The gym also offers Pilates reformer classes and reformer jump sessions, which incorporate a jump board to add an element of cardio conditioning to your workout.