Michael Glatter has appraised fitness from many different perspectives—as an athlete on a wrestling team, as a competitor in power-lifting meets, as an Applied Health Science student in a college classroom, and as a personal trainer. He brings his extensive athletic experience to Glatter Fitness, pulling from his knowledge of kinesiology and expertise in various training methods to craft workouts designed to slim physiques and tone muscles. His constantly varied boot-camp workouts are packed with strength-training and cardiovascular exercises such as kettlebell swings, lunges, and mountain-climbers.
When the Richmond Alternative Center for Health first opened its doors in 1968, it was meant to be a space where members could attend to every area of their health and fitness. More than four decades later, the center is still committed to that vision. Much of the staff has been around for 15 years or more, creating a tight-knit, welcoming environment that has many people calling them the Cheers of health clubs.
There's plenty of traditional cardio and strength-training equipment, with TVs and wandering minstrels to keep everyone entertained. The bustling class schedule includes Zumba's Latin-inspired aerobic dance party, various styles of yoga, and Les Mills classes, including the sports-inspired BodyAttack. Students can continue to stretch, relax, and meditate within the dedicated mind-body room or hone mind-ball coordination on the basketball or racquetball courts. Personal trainers help members focus in on their individual goals and commit to making progress.
The staff offers wellness consultations to help members evaluate every area of their health, as well as nutrition counseling that can include anything from meal planning to cooking classes. Massage therapists knead away stress and postworkout soreness, and the heat of the cedar sauna, steam room, and jacuzzi also helps bodies unwind. In the lounge area, free WiFi, newspapers, and magazines wait to be appreciated. And the onsite Healthy Cafe blends up smoothies alongside healthy meals and coffee, which members can enjoy right there or take home to share with health-conscious ghosts.
Sherma Francis founded Diva Fitness because she wanted women to have a holistic alternative to the gym. That explains why the boot-camp classes are held outdoors, but the workouts aren’t just an opportunity to admire the fresh air and blue skies. Francis is a certified fitness and spinning instructor, and her intense cardio and strength-training exercises are designed to whip bodies into shape fast. In addition to boot camps at public parks, she offers at-home personal-training sessions for exercisers who prefer to work out in private or are afraid of being distracted by cute baby deer.
The class rows in unison, guiding a raft across the pond and back. Upon landing, the group splits into teams of two, each hoisting up a log and pressing it overhead. Through such group training, the instructors behind SEAL Team Physical Training, Inc. demonstrate their philosophy that teamwork brings out the best in people. Greeting everyone with a hearty “Hoo yah!” they lead a fitness program designed by Navy SEAL John McGuire that never repeats the same workout. Training begins with the two-week basic-fitness class, which prepares clients of all fitness levels to enter ongoing membership training. There are also specialized programs for youth, marathon runners, and wile e. coyotes. SEAL Team PT’s results have earned recognition in publications such as Sports Illustrated as well as on Dr. Oz for a client who lost 160 pounds.
At Richmond Balance, trainers forge bodies to match the beauty of life-changing events. Their bridal boot camp, which has been featured in Richmond Bride, tones wives-to-be with regular, small-group workouts that culminate in confident struts down the aisle. Likewise, their new mommy boot-camp classes help ladies achieve post-pregnancy goals, such as a slimmer stomach or arms that can change stroller tires without a jack. Support remains the common element of these specialized programs—the staff gathers students with similar objectives and capitalizes on a sense of camaraderie. The same method guides the Balanced Buddies system, in which partners share the same personal trainer, and PWR! Fitness Training, a regimen for guests with disorders such as Parkinson's disease.
Even outside the communal atmosphere of classes, Richmond Balance prioritizes an intimate, custom approach to health. Its certified trainers will travel to homes for private sessions or supervise clients as they sweat aboard the gym's Precor, Tuff Stuff, and Schwinn equipment. During workouts, guests can occupy their eyes by watching the individual flat-screen televisions on select machines or by counting the exposed bricks on the walls around them.
At FIT Richmond, workers-out of all proclivities and fitness levels can raise their heart rates and build core strength in 45-minute FIT Group Training classes, which derive their potency from full body exercises and personalized attention. FIT Richmond’s certified personal trainers forsake a one-size-fits-all approach to fitness and instead tailor each workout to fit their students’ specific needs as snugly as a bug in a spandex rug. Workouts operate in a circuit format to ensure that no joints or muscles feel unduly neglected as their owners spread around their sweat-soaked love in even measures.
Led by Paul Caminiti, a former collegiate runner and certified group exercise instructors, the staff at Team Adrenaline International has been designing fitness programs for athletes of all ages, experience levels, and fitness levels since 2007. Their programs range from outdoor fitness camps for adults of all levels to programs designed for seasoned athletes, helping them to develop seven key competition principles—speed, power, flexibility, muscular endurance, cardiovascular endurance, balance, and mental strength.