Looking at Marty Velasco now, it's hard to believe that he once struggled with his weight. Though Marty may be muscular and slim today, his history gives him a unique understanding of the hardships faced by those trying to lose weight. This understanding fuels his determination to help others at his private fitness studio.
At Fitness Edge, Marty and his staff help clients on the road to health and weight loss with group fitness classes and personal training. Within the colorful studio, or at outdoor locations in Rocky River Park, the staff leads students of all fitness levels in full-body circuit-training workouts. Sessions might call upon strength-building kettlebell exercises, natural bodyweight resistance, and cardiovascular conditioning exercises, and trainers help their students continue the work at home with nutritional counseling and meal plans. The staff is committed to creating a friendly environment for their students; they welcome all newcomers with an orientation, where they demonstrate what to expect from the program, tour the facility, and ritualistically hand crochet students' names into their sweatbands.
The fitness instructors at each of Body Sculpting's dozens of gyms lead their customers in the fight to stave off osteoporosis, increase lean muscle mass, improve cardiovascular fitness, and lose weight. During fitness sessions, they teach visitors the proper form and principles of the gym's flagship Body Sculpting program, which focuses on cardio and weight-training exercises that often require only a set of 5-pound dumbbells, an exercise mat, and a stretch band. They augment this central program with a range of other classes that delve into barre-fitness techniques, exercises for the abdominals and core, workouts for the back, and cardiovascular training. To help customers achieve their fitness goals and continue fighting crime past bedtime, the gym sells products such as stretch bands used by physical therapists, heel-elevation boards, and instructional manuals. Trainers also help customers stay fit with an exercise of the month that draws from techniques such as Pilates.
Founded on the belief that yoga’s transformative benefits should be shared with anyone interested—regardless of age, gender, or religion—Puma Yoga welcomes students of all experience levels to its non-competitive studio. Calming music reverberates through the intimate studio as students work on everything from relaxing flow to the more intense power yoga classes lead by knowledgeable and welcoming instructors. Private yoga sessions and workshops help developing yogis deepen their understanding of the practice and discover that triangle pose has nothing to do with their high-school band experience. Puma Yoga also offers workshops on topics such as nutrition and holistic health, and also offers a 10-week yoga teacher-training program for aspiring instructors.
As Jaclyn Hoffman discovered, the myriad benefits of yoga—strength, flexibility, peace of mind—apply at any point in your life. After spending her youth honing her mental and physical skills as a dancer, Jaclyn suffered the pangs of adulthood ten years later. Mired by stress and a bad back, she began practicing yoga, which quickly healed her mind, body, and spirit. Now a certified Bikram yoga instructor and the co-owner of Prana Bodhi, Jaclyn guides others toward the same tranquility. Classes take place in a studio heated to 105 degrees, which helps increase blood circulation and sympathy for people who live in Arizona. Jaclyn is also a massage practitioner, offering spa services such as acupuncture and facials at the studio.
Alyssa Lee Wilmot once envisioned a place where people could come and express themselves through movement; she brought that place to life when she opened The Movement Factory. Alyssa strives to find classes that combine fitness with movement arts, which explains her fitness-class schedule that's replete with dance-inspired Zumba, yoga, hip-hop, Pilates, and barre sessions. All sessions at The Movement Factory welcome students aged 18 and older of all experience levels.
At Tango Apasionado, students learn graceful Argentine tango steps and the basics of leading and following under the tutelage of an instructor with more than 35 years of dance experience. Classes include group sessions, which students can attend without a partner, as well as a five-week Argentine boot camp that immerses them in the dance.