The last thing Leigh McCarthy wants is for anyone who visits her studio to feel uncomfortable, so she rids the air of pretension right away. "I am not the picture of perfect physical fitness, nor can I form my body into a pretzel," she writes in her bio. She understands that everyone comes to yoga for a different reason, perhaps to stay in shape, maybe to improve posture, or possibly even to fulfill a dream of being Stretch Armstrong for Halloween. Leigh began practicing to help manage her anxiety and chronic back pain, but it was the peace of mind she discovered that led her to continue.
This understanding that yoga is a journey infuses Leigh's instruction. She takes a patient approach with all students, encouraging them to develop at their own paces. To enhance the benefits of her classes, Leigh partners with massage therapist Andrea Banks, who performs Swedish and restorative massage, manual lymphatic drainage, and craniosacral therapy.
Each noncompetitive Curves facility invites female fitness-seekers to move through a 30-minute circuit of hydraulic resistance machines designed to promote weight loss, protect against osteoporosis, and deal with arthritis. Shunning cumbersome weight stacks, the hydraulic gadgets adapt to each exerciser's body weight and fitness level to complement her individual abilities, subsequently decreasing the risk of soreness or injury. And because traditional lift-and-lower motions create bulky muscles, each machine uses push-and-pull motions to create toned, lean muscles perfect for crushing unsuspecting grapefruit. Experienced trainers are always nearby to help clients manage their machine maneuvering, and a soundtrack of fun, upbeat music includes cues to let women know when it's time to move on to the next station or break for an air viola solo.
Jesse Ramos began his boxing career in Mexico when he was just 16 years old. Starting from such an early age, he learned to love the sweet science as a means to discipline his mind and connect with his body. With 30 years of experience now under his coaching belt, his passion for boxing burns all the brighter. Since opening up in 1999, Ramos, along with his team of dedicated instructors, has helped others stoke their own fighting fires. At Victory Gym, the coaches offer classes for students of any age or experience level. Students as young as 8 can work through basic techniques and footwork and build their conditioning, eventually graduating to live sparring inside the gym's regulation ring. For those looking to tone up while they float like a butterfly, but are too terrified to associate with bees, instructors also offer Zumba cardio dance classes.
An uncoordinated child, Jess didn't really discover her athletic side until college. At that time, though, a group of friends introduced her to activities such as yoga, hiking, rock climbing, and biking. She realized that, with a little training, she could change the way her body worked, and begin to trust her own limbs. Now, as the owner and trainer behind JessBFit Personal Training & Yoga, she helps others transform into healthier versions of the themselves. She teaches outdoor fitness classes and yoga, as well as one-on-one training sessions customized to help clients achieve their personal fitness goals.
Popsicles, lemonade stands, street festivals?all of these are synonymous with summer, but none so fully encapsulates the spirit of the season as just one day at Jefferson Community Pool. Families can splash around in the pool's crystal-clear waters during open-swim sessions held throughout the summer months. The pool also hosts swimming classes that teach students how to stay afloat and what to do when they encounter a rubber ducky in the wild.