Snap Fitness's around-the-clock gyms enable members to work on physical wellbeing with a cornucopia of equipment. With 24-hour access, members don't have to let The Man or a random street man tell them when to help themselves to Snap's strength-training equipment, cardio equipment, or cardio theater, which features television screens. Even if you exercise during conventional hours, Snap's friendly, unintimidating atmosphere will provide a refreshing change of pace from any meat-market gym or tough elementary-schoolyard workout. Members also enjoy access to Snap Fitness locations worldwide, ideal for working out while traveling.
Under the glimmering light of a rotating disco ball, Studio Azul's Zumba instructors lead upbeat dance-inspired classes suitable for students of all fitness levels. Spicy Latin tunes pumping from the studio's suspended speakers animate the easy-to-follow steps, which create an exhilarating workout that burns calories and hones wedding-reception material. Blond wooden floor planks help reduce impact to skeletons delicate and sturdy as they shimmy and shake across the room. Studio Azul's seven-day schedule grants ample fodder for especially dedicated students, and the consistently high-energy levels of the instructors help motivate students as they rhythmically traipse toward improved fitness.
The dress code of each fitness class at Onyx tells a lot about the curriculum: the shorter the shorts, the better in the pole fitness classes, as contact between the bare skin and the pole helps keeps students in gravity-defying inversion. Meanwhile, it’s better to wear long pants for the aerial fitness classes—you can avoid rope burn this way while climbing the silks that hang in the spacious aerial studio. These two types of classes make up the majority of Onyx Pole and Aerial Fitness Studio’s classes, and though the classes are fun, the instructors take the fitness aspect seriously, too. To that end, they offer boot camp, bodyrock, and core pole classes to help students achieve their overall fitness goals.
With machines set up in rows to encourage competition, many ordinary gyms cater to men's bodies and psychology, right down to the urinals that were "accidentally" installed in the women's locker room. At Curves, you'll move around a circuit of hydraulic resistance machines that have been designed to work with women's bodies and promote weight loss, protect against osteoporosis, and deal with arthritis. An experienced trainer is always nearby to help manage your machine maneuvering and your muscle making. Instead of fiddling with weight stacks and losing your momentum, the hydraulic machines use your body weight and fitness level to create resistance that matches your abilities, decreasing the risk of soreness or injury. Because traditional lift-and-lower motions create bulky muscles, each machine uses push-and-pull motions to create toned, lean muscles perfect for crushing a grapefruit without looking like you can.
The trainers at Pure Workout have stripped away the glamour of giant, impersonal gyms. They usher guests into a no-excuses zone where simple weights and calisthenics reign supreme, leading their classes with a potent mix of fitness expertise and tough love. Their routines vary, but each boot-camp session sparks friendly competition between attendees as they flip tires, heft weights, and sprint up hills. With no regard for noncommittal members who sneak helium into their kettlebells, the staff prizes Pure Workout's exclusive atmosphere—a quality that earned the gym a feature on NBC 5 and the title of CityVoter's Best Boot Camp in 2012.
The enthusiastic instructors at local Yoga patiently coach aspiring yogis as they stretch torsos and reach toes sky-high in supportive group yoga sessions. Amid ivory walls and colorful accents, students vogue through fundamental asanas in Intro to Yoga classes, as the session-helming relaxation gurus eagerly impart expert tips and answer questions. To kick-start cardiovascular health, Power 2 classes sweep sinews through a fast-paced sequence of fluid Vinyasa poses, and Express Yoga loosens up taut muscles and rusty Leave It to Beaver lunchboxes during swift 45-minute sessions. Alternatively, pupils can gradually banish stress with Deep Flow classes, which nurture supple sinews with meditative, sustained poses that make The Thinker statue seem fidgety.
Sean Keil, the founder of Renaissance Movement LLC, discovered parkour at the ripe old age of 12. Eschewing his history as a professional dancer, he followed parkour full-force, traveling extensively to train with top parkour masters and even some of the inventors of the sport. Together he and his staff have developed a community in which they help students develop the necessary skills, both physical and mental, to practice the discipline of parkour in a safe environment.