While many gyms offer weights, treadmills, ellipticals, and rowing machines to help its members achieve leaner physiques, all JC Barre Fitness Studio needs is a ballet barre. That's because the apparatus helps students sculpt lean muscles, lose weight, and increase agility thanks to a flurry of exercises performed during various classes. The studio's signature class B3 blends Pilates, ballet, and Yoga into a one-hour, 600 calorie-burning workout, and co-ed boot camp by B3 ups the exercise ante with increased cardio and isometric moves that deliver a satisfying burn without actually setting fire to one's muscles. In addition to barre classes, the studio offers up Pilates and Zumba sessions and invites its clients to suggest additional classes via email.
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 in cardio routines. Many Gold's Gym locations stockpile futuristic amenities, such as cardio machines with individual iPod docks and televisions that help keep patrons motivated.
Marie Medina began dancing as a 6-year-old, and she has never lost her enthusiasm for it. Inside her industrial chic studio, Marie and her team of instructors strive to empower and inspire women through fitness, movement, and dance. They lead students of all fitness levels through a variety of dance-inspired fitness classes such as Barre, Zumba, Pilates, Ballroom Fit, and more, all designed to stimulate the mind, body, and soul.
Malenna Saunders grabs her ROTC and Air Force experience by the horns when she leads intense indoor and outdoor boot-camp or fitness classes. Warrior boot camp prepares patrons to slay unwanted fat during a 60-minute romp through plyometric and cardio conditioning melded with strength training and calisthenics routines, and Bowery Babes boot-camp sessions cater to moms or three toddlers standing on one another's shoulders dressed as a mom. Meanwhile, kettlebell workouts and functional exercises tone everyday muscles.
Certified instructors helm other group fitness classes, such as Vinyasa yoga and Zumba cardio-dance classes, within studios fully stocked with workout-enhancing props. Patrons of all fitness levels shimmy into Zumba sessions to hip-shake away excess poundage, mastering easy-to-follow Latin dance moves, which can add spice to tired chimney-sweeping routines.
Exercise experts transform left feet into deft dancers during group fitness classes. Customers reduce corporeal circumferences while breezing through dance routines taught by one of ten different instructors, each with their own unique flair. The dim, disco-style lighting and booming stereo system contribute to a nightclub feel, helping students feel like they're out on the town instead of exercising in a studio. Classes incorporate rhythms and steps from across genres and continents—styles in the mix include Bollywood, hip-hop, salsa, Middle Eastern, and African. Workouts include a combination of stretching, strengthening, abdominal and cardio movements meant to firm, sculpt, and tone the entire body. A collection of fun, graceful, swirling tricks are designed to suit all skill levels are combined with a sophisticated selection of sensual movements, all performed in a safe environment.
Todd Chen, director of Rise Dance Company, stepped into salsa serendipitously: after a disastrous party that found him standing at the sidelines as more experienced dancers twirled his date around the room, he began to apply his hip-hop experience to Latin beats. Instead of hoarding his newfound sultriness, Chen recruited a team of seasoned instructors, who break each move into simple steps that are easy to learn and practice. The company's dynamic group Zumba workouts pair Latin-inspired dance steps with vibrant world music. As with training a parrot to rap, both Zumba and traditional salsa classes revolve around repetition to build up a repertoire of steps that translate to dance floors everywhere, helping students internalize the moves as they melt stress and calories.