Snap Fitness's easyFIT monitor is a small, clip-on accelerometer that helps keep track of daily exercise. Unlike pedometers that merely measure steps and spy on daydreams, the easyFIT monitor senses the intensity and duration of physical activity, transmogrifying those stats into simple, numerical points that help assess activity levels from sedentary to peak performance. In addition to tracking exercise in real time, easyFIT monitors can connect to the wearer's personal web portal to upload data and create fitness graphs that help show progress, snag exercise suggestions, and stave off the temptation of living next to a hamburger farm. Watch a video about the easyFit here.
A 4,500-square-foot gym serves as the staging ground for Triple Crown CrossFit's all-out assault against flab. The gym's trainers bring years of fitness experience to each Workout of the Day. As they lead dynamic, challenging workouts, instructors also strive to create a welcoming atmosphere that will help clients of all fitness levels power their way into shape.
In addition to CrossFit, Triple Crown also offers a full slate of martial arts classes for adults and children of all skill levels. During kids' jiu jitsu sessions, youngsters cultivate knowledge and confidence along with strength and balance as they study the form's submissions and grapples. Students learn to set their own goals as they work toward higher ranks, and each session ends with a life-coaching talk that ties classwork to positive development and foundational values.
Fitworks is home to a dedicated cadre of certified muscle architects who guide eager physiques through intense, small group workouts. Peruse the schedule before sampling a tension-undoing yoga class or a weekend-morning muscle-pump session, ideal for prepping for an underwater bench-press that will determine the office's next round of promotions. One-hour Zumba classes harness the rhythmic power of merengue, conga, belly dancing, and more to kill calories while resuscitating sleepy toes. After classes, students can freshen up or flex unused singing muscles in Fitworks' shower facilities.
The Ritz Ballroom Dance Studio's instructors understand that dancers learn in stages, which is why they utilize the popular Medalist system, where students work toward specific goals at each level. Dancers begin at an introductory stage, where they learn the basic steps of ballroom dances such as the Viennese waltz, foxtrot, and cha-cha, and Latin styles such as bolero or salsa dancing. From there, dancers increase their awareness of each movement, progressing from slow and somewhat unsure to consciously confident?striving to let the dance flow through them without thinking about each step or wondering if Fred Astaire ever tried the worm.
Private lessons give students one-on-one practice time with instructors who move at a customized pace. Students then progress to group classes where they learn to dance with a variety of partners and pick up good dance habits, such as never biting their dancemate's nails. Scheduled dance parties create a relaxed, casual setting for further practice in the studio, which bathes dancers in a dreamy atmosphere complete with floor-to-ceiling mirrors, honey-hued wood floors, and the glittery twinkles of a disco ball.
If variety can spice up life in general, Inhale Exhale Studio's owner Hao Ly figures it's also a great way to keep exercising interesting. She, and her 20-plus teachers, leads a regimen of more than 50 group fitness classes held across all seven days of the week. Students might show up on Sunday and shape glutes in a barre-based fitness class or drop in on Monday to sweat during warm Vinyasa flow yoga lead by Hao herself. Other days feature similar options, as well as multiple forms of Pilates, boot camps, and even the occasional spinning class. To help fend off soreness and aches, Hao says the studio offers Thai bodywork, an assisted form of stretching with many similarities to yoga.
Equipment: Pilates Reformer apparatus, RealRyder bikes
Students should bring: hot yoga towel, bottle of water, yoga mat, spin shoes, hand towel
Average class length: 60-90 minutes
Number of Staff: 11?25
Class location: Indoors only
Registration required: Yes
Good for beginners: Yes
Parking: Parking lot
Though its name may conjure fantasies about sprinting down crowded streets or bench-pressing buses stalled in traffic, Urban Active Fitness grants its members abundant space in which to spread out and follow their workout proclivities. At dozens of locations across the Midwest and South, members can sculpt their bodies in whichever manner they choose—from personal training with resistance machines and free weights to group classes in cycling, Zumba, and Pilates. A number of group classes draw on the gym’s urban theme for inspiration. Urban Iron, for example, focuses on building muscles that resemble the cast-iron beams of skyscrapers, and Urban Yoga closely imitates the poses necessary to squeeze onto a subway train at rush hour.