CrossFit Julia’s husband-and-wife team takes a personal approach to fitness. Rather than set their clients loose in a jungle of workout machinery, they structure their daily CrossFit workouts around functional strength and cardio exercises in a supportive group setting. The classes themselves constantly vary; one day’s deadlifts and pushups are another day’s sprints and burpees. Success is determined not by any uniform standard, but by each student’s ability to meet or exceed his or her own fitness expectations. Just as CrossFit differs from normal workouts, CrossFit Julia’s facility differs from a normal gym. Ropes hang from the ceiling, and the rows of cardio machines found in typical gyms have been replaced with heavy tires lifted from cars illegally parked outside.
PlanetSwim founder and owner Stephan's life is a timeline of aquatic achievements, containing awards that he won as a competitive swimmer as well as several teaching titles—lifeguard trainer and Red Cross–certified swim instructor among them. At PlanetSwim, Stephan holds his staff to similar standards. Each teacher has a minimum of five years of swim-instruction experience and has also been Red Cross–certified. Together, the team channels its knack for tutelage into swim lessons for children and adults of all ages in indoor, heated pools, including the one in Louisville, which is filled with warm water to encourage students to get in.
PlanetSwim's philosophy centers around personal attention, an element that demands small class sizes and a supportive atmosphere. Whether they are leading a 10-minute lesson for a water-shy toddler or an intermediate course on different strokes, the instructors monitor their pupils closely to ensure both comfort and development of technique.
On the third Saturday of every month, parents and tots cut a rug on the ballroom dance floor at FamilyDance Planet during the company's signature two-hour dance event. The dance party is the brainchild of guitar player and singer Kristin McLean, who believes that music has the power to strengthen familial ties. Kristin also leads Magical Music classes, during which preschoolers sing songs in multiple languages, try out different instruments, and dance with scarves. In addition, the center offers Family Song Music classes, where all members of the family are encouraged to participate in sing-a-longs.
In 2001, with a puff of smoke and a trumpet fanfare, Xtreme Altitude Gymnastics was born. In the years since, the kid-focused gym has amassed a team of more than 60 coaches and administrative staff, all of whom spend their days nurturing children's fitness as well as their imaginations. This care stretches across two fitness centers, where it takes the form of recreational gymnastics programs, day camps, and drop-in playtime sessions for infants through adolescents.
The 19,000 square-foot Xtreme Altitude Gymnastics challenges kids to shoot for the ceiling with amenities such as a full-size high school cheer floor, eight beams, bounce castles, a 40-foot tumble track, and an in-ground foam training pit. The 9,500 square-foot recently-updated Flatirons Gymnastics facility, boasts many of the same amenities, including a new foam pit, as well as uneven bars, five spring floor tumbling strips, and rope swings. In addition, both gyms contain viewing areas for parents, and sound systems that play upbeat music and keep nostalgic storks from nesting in the rafters.
Members at Curves, a fitness center designed exclusively for women, rotate around a circuit of hydraulic resistance machines designed to work with female bodies and promote weight loss, protect against osteoporosis, and deal with arthritis. An experienced trainer is always nearby to help to manage participants’ machine maneuvering and muscle making. Instead of fiddling with weight stacks and losing momentum, the hydraulic machines use participants' own body weight, fitness level, and aerodynamic water bottles to create resistance that matches 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. Between each weight station lies a recovery board where ladies cool down while walking, jogging, or running in place to keep up momentum. With each workout warrior at a different station, the only competition that exists is with one's own burgeoning muscles.
Anytime Fitness, as the name suggests, is open 24 hours a day, seven days a week, and 365 days a year with nonstop security. Novice calorie burners and ripped Michelangelo models alike can take advantage of a one-month membership, which equips bodies with enough treadmills, cycles, elliptical machines, and weights to train them to run a marathon inside of a swimming pool filled with mud. Highlight the results of fat-frying and muscle-mass-magnifying sessions with one month of unlimited tanning in high-powered beds that paint ripply physiques a brilliant shade of bronze.