When Kristina Bauer—a yoga veteran with 20 years of experience and 1,000 classes under her mat—opened Yoga Synergy Spa, she wanted to create a space that felt more like a home than a gym or a corporate chain. Today, her studio glows with her own homemade candles while yogis lead guests through various styles of yoga, including heated Vinyasa flow, Hatha yoga for all levels, and a class that invites kids and their parents to stretch together. In addition to its group session, the studio embraces its spa side with massage therapy that complements Kristina’s pursuit of peacefulness in the same way that playing Marco Polo can add a little fun to a shark attack. An on-location retail shop stocks yoga mats, homemade natural soaps, and veggie candles.
Crunch finds the fun in fitness with its no-judgment, open-minded approach to exercise. With a one-month membership, clients get unlimited access to the gym and its state-of-the-art facilities. Tap into the timeless power of ancient lever, pulley, and treadmill technologies to tone muscles and trim mass, or exert dominance over weak-willed weights with prop-assisted lifts and lunges. The one-month membership also grants users admittance to Crunch's collection of wildly imaginative classes, split up into three categories—Action Sports, Chill Outs, and Dance Rhythms. Strap on a pair of Kangoo Jumps for the BOING with Kangoo class, wrap yourself in the folds of fitness-friendly fabric for AntiGravity Yoga Wings, or peel off skirts of stress in Crunch's pole-dancing class, among many more. Crunch even scores clients' sweat-inducing sessions with live DJs.
It's hot and humid in Bikram Yoga Miami's studio—the temperatures reach 105 degrees—but not because the air conditioner is broken. Here, the heat and humidity coax muscles to sink deeper into the stretches and cause students to release toxins via beads of sweat during Bikram yoga classes. Certified in the yoga style's 26-posture sequence, the instructors lead students through the poses, helping them increase their strength, flexibility, and range of motion, which comes in handy when one gets the urge to backwards-crabwalk up a wall. Within the balmy studio, sun streams in from the windows and bounces off the full-wall mirrors, illuminating the rows of students as the instructors offer adjustments to the postures to accommodate varying ability levels.
The Pilates Place’s fitness space brims with an arsenal of specialized Pilates equipment, including Reformers, towers, and Cadillacs. The studio’s dedication to safe and effective workouts guides its students to introductory classes that teach them how to properly operate the apparatuses. Leading an expansive schedule, the studio’s trained instructors helm basic and intermediate exercises for each piece of equipment while developing form and sculpting a slender core that is capable of supporting tall postures and piggybacking circus strongmen. Students may progress to group classes once they master the Pilates technique and learn to set up the equipment without the help of superglue.
As a community, Green Monkey is thriving. Across its three locations, it's taken on dozens of instructors who lead more than 36 types of classes, including meditation classes that rely on breathing techniques and silent affirmations to quiet the mind. As if all those class varieties weren't enough, the instructors also put together frequent workshops, many of which teach specific skills such as handstands and inverted backbends.
Sometimes our dreams are within reach, but, more often, they are on the highest shelf, beside the BB gun and the cupcakes "for tomorrow." Reach that shelf with today's Groupon: $39 for five yoga classes at miami life center ($85 value). This holistic health retreat was voted Best Yoga Studio of 2008 by the Miami New Times and named one of the top 25 yoga studios around the world by Travel + Leisure magazine.
Biotonic Brickell takes care of its clients' bodies and minds. The center's Power Plate sessions decrease workout times and improve physical health using specialized equipment designed to contract muscles up to 50 times each second. Biotonic's fitness classes focus on the abs and posterior, cardio exercise, and core strength. The center also offers yoga classes to calm clients' minds, relieve stress, and increase flexibility.