Though Ardy Conway and her staff of certified trainers at Ardy's Pilates Studio work primarily with three apparatus—the Reformer, the Cadillac, and the chair—they are well equipped to weave more than 500 Pilates exercises into their custom workouts. Ardy draws on more than 20 years of experience as she and her team tailor private and semiprivate sessions to individual goals, such as relieving joint pain or improving at golf. The instructors also host group Reformer classes, which max out at six students to keep classes personal and allow competitive sextuplets to remain at the same fitness level.
Custom Workouts might feel a bit smaller than your average chain gym—that's part of its appeal. The private setting allows gym-goers to work out on top-notch equipment without feeling intimated or overwhelmed. Staying true to its commitment to the individual, the gym also offers personal training with a reasonable price tag. But those who crave the motivation of peers can opt for group classes such as Zumba and spinning.
Walnut Pier Health Club's cardio and strength equipment is utilized throughout 15 courses that get bodies moving. The accommodating daily schedule begins at 4:30 a.m. on weekdays, making it the ideal choice for fishermen who prefer to cast their hooks in outdoor heated pools that host aquatics classes. Stationary bike wheels rotate clients into healthy leg orbits during the Cycle classes; Zumba pumps Latin-inspired beats to inspire soaring heart rates; and myriad other aerobic classes usher members into the robust, perspirational world of fitness. In the on-site sauna, tuckered muscles recover and rest after vigorous workouts, energetic classes, and flexing for giggling courtesans.
At All Sport Fitness Center, a comprehensive collection of cardio machines, free weights, and functional exercise equipment waits patiently to be incorporated into visitors’ exercise routines. A team of personal trainers, meanwhile, works to keep trainees motivated with one-on-one sessions, as well as a range of group fitness classes such as Pilates, yoga, spinning, and All Sports Fit, a boot-camp style session.
The certified instructors at Bloom Yoga keep class sizes small, allowing them to teach yoga, Pilates, and NIA classes with personal attention paid to each student. The All Levels yoga class gives students a taste of several styles of yoga, while the beginning yoga class teaches attendees the basics of hatha.
Instructor Jodi Conroy embraced The Bar Method lifestyle while learning from and eventually teaching under its creator, Burr Leonard. Jodi then opened her own franchises in an effort to acquaint more Californians with The Bar Method's signature mix of interval training, isometric exercises, dance-conditioning moves, and low-impact techniques gleaned from physical therapy. During routines, patrons unfurl legs and stretch spines into balance-affirming positions, often utilizing a ballet bar for leverage rather than anchoring legs in recycled Christmas-tree stands. The muscle-lengthening workouts build stamina while streamlining physiques and have garnered praise from such celebrities as Drew Barrymore and Anna Paquin. The Santa Barbara Independent has commended Jodi's "clean and pleasant" Santa Barbara studio, as well as its "personable and funny instructors [who] do an excellent job of supporting each student."
After visiting multiple friends who owned SPX studios, Marcus and Eva Kettles decided that imitation would be the sincerest show of devotion to Santa Barbara's fitness scene. The pair quickly laid plans for their own business, channeling their entrepreneurial backgrounds—Marcus had owned a New York City production company, and Eva had run a successful restaurant and holistic medicine practice—to launch the project. Today, you can find them overseeing an array of Megaformer machines inside Fit Buddha's eastern-themed exercise zone, where guests bolster their bodies during signature SPX classes–all without the burden of membership fees.
The 40-minute SPX workout and its signature Megaformer machine draws from focused Pilates techniques, cardio drills, and strength training to create a full-body conditioning routine. By melding effective intensity, cardio, and endurance training, the Megaformer delivers a more complete workout than traditional Pilates. Energizing music syncs up with the class circuit, which can deviate from the SPX formula to include stationary cycling and nonstationary naptime. The studio also houses wellness and nutrition centers that espouse the anti-aging benefits of infrared saunas alongside wholesome sips from protein shakes.