Bikram Hot Yoga is a melting pot of good vibes—almost literally, as the high temperatures required for Bikram yoga encourage muscle tension and toxins to melt away, allowing students to move deeper into each stretch. The 90-minute Bikram yoga series thus hones mental and physical stamina, activating the body's entire muscular system with its carefully ordered sequence of 26 poses and two breathing exercises. However, the venue also deserves to be labeled a melting pot because it serves as a hub where wellsprings of positivity coalesce.
One such spring is the supportive staff, helmed by owner David Tiviluk and comprised of such devotees as Denis D., whose Bikram-yoga journey helped him to regain movement after a devastating motorcycle crash. The teaching team helps newcomers and advanced yogis alike achieve the benefits of a long-term Bikram practice. They pose challenges—take four classes a week for one month, for example—that create an encouraging, communal atmosphere. They also schedule special events, welcoming visitors to seminars by guest instructors and candlelit cello performances.
Another agent of good vibes is the studio itself, which was built according to the advice of a feng shui consultant. Warm red and orange tiles line the desks in a lobby hung with paintings and pendulous lights. Signs of an eco-friendly attitude abound: the floor is recycled vinyl, the insulation in the walls is recycled denim, and there are no plastic water bottles; instead, students can purchase chilled water in glass jars or store water in their cheeks until they are thirsty.
Though the winter snow has melted, inner tubes continue to zoom down the routes at Chicopee Tube Park—now cruising atop Italian mats, designed for waterless tubing. A host of other outdoor attractions complement the park’s eponymous activity. Two ziplines—an 80-metre line for first timers and a 300-metre line for veteran fliers—let passengers glide above the treetops without having to hitch a ride on a passing pterodactyl. The Eurobungy trampoline also gives guests the gift of flight, granting harness-sporting park-goers the ability to leap up to 25 feet in the air, and the spider-web climbing tower offers stationary bird’s-eye views once climbers have hoisted themselves to its pinnacle. For low-to-the-ground fun, harnessed participants at the horizontal ropes can balance six feet off the ground, getting a taste of tightrope walking without that chalky, acrophobic aftertaste.
At Pro Dojos, certified martial-arts experts lead students of all ages and skill levels through a variety of pugilistic disciplines. Each location is independently owned, so the martial-arts styles may vary, but many offer karate, tae kwon do, kick-boxing, aikido, and jujitsu classes. The instructors elucidate the noble combat arts to kiddos as young as 4 years old, helping them build strength and motor skills while instilling the values of self-confidence. Teen classes focus on honing discipline and treating yourself and others with respect, and adult classes reinforce cardiovascular conditioning, strength, balance, and coordination. The instructors also lead classes for the whole family, allowing them to bond as a unit, which could possibly lead to starring in a hit sitcom about a crime-fighting family who takes down comical villains in their idyllic suburban neighborhood.
ISSA-certified fitness trainer Chris Walker of Chris Walker's Fitness Bootcamp keeps clients in top shape by sharing his health expertise via online articles and regimens in addition to in-person fat-shedding exercise programs. His handpicked squad of personal trainers leads private workout sessions as well as specialized boot-camp classes, both of which aim to ease physiques into slimmer frames. Ever-varied routines combine drills from kickboxing, Zumba, and weight-loss calisthenics, with most programs supplemented by dietary tips and advice on how to properly dice pineapples with your fists. Chris's motivational strategies prioritize collaboration over competition to benefit clients of all fitness levels.
"I now use many of the noninvasive medical services I offer at my clinics to fight the aging process. I have personally never felt or looked better and I am now in my forties," says Eleanor Welsh, founder of Skin Vitality Medical Clinic. Using Elos laser and radio frequency technology, her team of registered nurses and registered practical nurses is able to reshape bodies, erase body hair, and tighten skin with the push of a button. Their skill with beauty injectables comes from extensive training from Allergan and other pharmaceutical companies, giving them the deft ability to leave clients' faces more youthful than a rosebud in a sippy cup. For more dramatic results, Dr. Conor B. Turley performs cosmetic surgeries such as tucks, augmentations, and lifts.
Anytime Fitness, which boasts more than 2,000 clubs in North America, makes it easier for average folks to etch out time for exercise by doing one simple thing: staying open 24 hours a day for 365 days a year. As fitness seekers challenge themselves on cardio and Hammer Strength machines and hoist Iron Grip free weights in clean, well-stocked facilities, security monitoring ensures they’re safe and producing enough sweat to meet official government standards. Members can also ramp up their exercise regimens with the help of Anytime Fitness’s staff of personal trainers, who demonstrate moves and sling motivating tips. After workouts, guests can shower in the private restrooms or hop into one of the tanning booths available 24 hours a day.