The pounding of feet reverberates through the cavernous gym as a group of boot campers push themselves through cardio and strength-training drills, defeating excess calories while dripping sweat. Passionate certified trainers can be found in the fray, helping campers with personalized adjustments and words of encouragement, motivating the group to finish the high-intensity routines. Each week, the trainers change up the boot-camp regimens, preventing bodies from getting accustomed to the movements and brains from getting bored and defecting to develop plans of world domination. The routines incorporate various strength-training and cardio exercises to boost metabolisms and satisfaction levels when flexing in front of the mirror. The trainers also lead bodies in yoga to increase their strength and flexibility, and Pilates to strengthen cores and improve balance.
Dedicated to maintaining relationships with their guests, the trainers at All About You! take attendance and contact each no-show to offer doses of encouragement and to keep them accountable to their fitness goals. Co-owner and nutritionist Narina Minassian also provides guests with nutrition plans, offering tips and healthy recipes to help them adopt a lifestyle of total wellness.
Leigh Ann grew up as an actor who was also an athlete: when she was offstage, the SoCal native dove off springboards, jumped hurdles, and fought on the kickboxing mat. Her knack for blending art with athleticism led her to found BeSpun at the age of 25. Leigh Ann competes and receives top honors at national and regional pole-dance competitions, and she has produced and starred in a series of instructional DVDs.
At BeSpun, Leigh Ann and her fellow instructors—also pole-dance champions—teach an extensive array of classes that include single-session and multiweek workshops. Classes’ subject matter ranges from beginners' lessons to master workshops led by special guests. There’s also open-studio time, as well as classes that focus on specialties such as spinning, stretching, and whittling your own pole from a chrome tree trunk. Instructors focus on leading thorough sessions that use time efficiently, and they’re committed to blending fitness with dance training. A lighthearted FAQ page answers potential questions while giving a taste of the studio’s fun-loving atmosphere.
When Darren Levine received his first Krav Maga black belt in 1984, he wasn't the first man to have worn that particular piece of fabric. The belt originally belonged to the man presenting it to him: Imi Lichtenfeld, the creator of Krav Maga. Darren had had the good fortune of learning the self-defense technique from Imi himself, and eventually became one of Imi's most trusted practitioners, developing training programs for more than 5,000 law enforcement and military personnel throughout the U.S.
In 1998, just one year after his beloved mentor passed away, Darren founded Krav Maga Worldwide to meet growing demand from curious civilians. The hand-to-hand technique is focused on reacting to realistic attacks, and teachers use scenarios inspired by everything from military combat, to late-night walks alone, to heated matches of Whac-A-Mole. Darren and his team lead various programs tailored for law enforcement and military members, women, fitness buffs, and even children, and they also offer certification programs for those looking to become instructors.
Most gyms don't limit their membership enrollment, which is why Meridian's Bodies in Motion does. By managing their member count, the workout areas are less crowded and visitors can step right up to machines without wasting precious calorie-burning minutes waiting in line. The staff can focus on keeping the facility clean and getting acquainted with clients, adding personal touches such as greeting members by name every time they enter and swipe their membership card, which means "hello" in several languages.
At each facility, a team of certified fitness instructors encourages exercise efforts during an array of group classes, including Zumba, spin, yoga, Pilates, kickboxing, and cross-training. The certified personal trainers devise customized workout routines and monitor exercisers' forms as they carve muscles lifting free weights and slim down on cardio and strength-training equipment from Icarian, Hammer Strength, Precor, and FreeMotion. Special features—such as racquetball courts, swimming pools, saunas, indoor basketball courts, boxing rings, childcare, and cuddly kitten pits—vary depending on location.
Earning all types of praise, including an endorsement from Los Angeles magazine as an exceptional boutique gym, Toluca Lake Tennis Club and Sports Center aims to live up to its reputation. Its private outdoor courts, surrounded by foothills and coniferous trees, play host to amateur and professional baize-ball endeavors. Tournaments include the Grey Goose Singles Challenge, where players compete for tickets to the U.S. Open, and more whimsical pursuits such as the Wimbledon Woodie Tournament, where players of all levels slap wooden rackets against oncoming woodpeckers.
Back in the fitness center, patrons cycle through a bevy of amenities. Swimmers battle the elements in a 60-foot indoor lap pool during aqua boot-camp classes and open swim, or they singe lounge-about calories with the cardio room's clutch of treadmills, Precor ellipticals, and stationary bikes. Wrangling the power of peer encouragement, trainers lead groups through fitness classes that range from Zumba to outdoor boot camp.
Backyard Bootcamp's team of highly trained instructors leads clients on fat-burning journeys through nature, slimming down physiques with fitness and dietary regimens that have been featured in The Black Book of Hollywood Diet Secrets by Kym Douglas and Cindy Pearlman. Each alfresco program combines scenic valley views with varied drills that challenge muscles in a new way each day. Patrons might jog down forest trails, surmount verdant hills, or hurdle squirrels in their pursuit of streamlined figures, and calisthenics and weight-lifting tone bodies from the torsos outward. The nutritional component of Backyard Bootcamp's routines holds attendees accountable with a food journal and provides a slew of tips for wholesome meal planning.
In addition to their boot camps and yoga meet-ups, trainers also helm backpacking retreats and report on local races, continuously cultivating a respect for wellness and the great outdoors.