The slim 20-foot storefront of Silhouettes for Women may look unassuming, but it opens to a 5,000-square-foot facility with two group fitness studios, private changing rooms, and a private weighing area. In addition to women-only fitness classes, personal training, and cardio equipment, the gym also offers nutritional counseling from certified weight-management consultants.
Designed by founder and renaissance woman Lynne Brick and her accomplished husband, Victor, Brick Bodies and Lynne Brick's health clubs share a fitness cornucopia of group classes, personal-training sessions, and women’s health tips. They stock their workout facilities with premium cardio and strength-training equipment, as well as offer amenities that may include pools, childcare services, and volcano-free saunas. Each of the seven locations sports its own personality, including the Owings Mills and Belvedere facilities, which operate as all-female communities.
The Brick's also employ a team of certified instructors, who lead more than 30 types of group fitness classes, allowing students of all skill levels access to sessions that range from low-impact workouts, such as BodyVive, to more intense courses, such as the kickboxing-inspired BodyCombat classes.
Xpose Fitness transforms its students into fit, confident divas with sultry exercise classes that have been featured on TLC and CNN. Certified instructors lead 50-minute workouts for all fitness levels, pairing muscle-lengthening stretches with isometric exercises to build strong, svelte muscles throughout the body. Floor and chair sessions blend yoga and Pilates poses into a dance routine that makes sexy props out of everyday objects such as desk chairs, loveseats, and throw pillows shaped like Grover Cleveland's moustache. In pole-dancing classes, the teacher imparts basic spins with step-by-step instructions and a steady stream of encouragement. Exercise modifications are available at each workout, helping new exercisers and injured participants move safely and comfortably. Consult the class schedule for times, and visit the FAQ page for a list of items to bring along.
From its scenic perch upon Baltimore's Inner Harbor, Canton Club rallies small groups for fun, distinctive, strength-building workouts. Air yoga elevates traditional yoga poses with a supportive silk hammock and shoulder-stretching trapeze, enabling a greater exploration of the body's range of motion. The airborne equipment helps strengthen core muscles without straining joints or compressing vertebrae, allowing necks and backs to attain giraffe-like grace and browse from the highest PowerBar trees. FitWall classes gift bodies a spider-like workout, requiring all muscles to band together to adjust to a new, vertical universe. Designed to burn 900-plus calories per hour, workouts order up a menu of more than 100 cardio, climbing, and resistance-training moves to buff up biceps and prolong endurance.
For Bikram Yoga Baltimore's Emily and Eddie Garner, yoga isn't just exercise. It's a dance that purifies the body and silent song that stirs the soul. Drawing upon intensive study with Bikram yoga's founder and Emily's years of ballet training, the couple fills 90-minute classes with 26 graceful poses that stretch and strengthen the entire body. Heated rooms in Cockeysville and Harbor East loosen students' muscles, making them as pliable as a gymnast made entirely of pipe cleaners. Calibrated for both beginners and advanced students, the workout boosts circulation, which can help ease chronic pain and oust pent-up toxins. In addition to hosting classes, each studio rents mats and sells energy boosters such as vitamin-fortified water and Emergen-C supplements.
Inside a practice space heated between 80 and 90 degrees, yogis Michele and Sean guide students of all ages and experience levels through the reinvigorating poses of Vinyasa power yoga. During up to two classes per day, the instructors help pupils master the style's breathing techniques and synchronized postures, which transition seamlessly into one another, much like a month of video-game playing leads to a Cheetos addiction. The heated room coaxes muscles into sinking into deeper stretches for increased flexibility and detoxifies bodies via sweat. A stock of free rental mats cushions guests throughout the session, and a free introductory course for new students allows novices to sample the Vinyasa style every Thursday night.
The MAC's state-of-the-art clubs offer experienced exercisers and more leisure-inclined visitors fun and encouraging environments in which to blast body fat and tone limbs. Group exercise reigns as MAC’s most popular amenity, and each session bulks muscles, fosters pliability, or burns calories without forcing participants to kiss firebreathers after each meal. The Harbor East locale promotes camaraderie with more than 60 group classes each week, headlined by a slew of Pilates reformer classes. Session pair each participant with a reformer, a Pilates apparatus whose moving parts increase one’s range of motion in order to mimic the waving arms and flailing legs of a cartoon character slipping on a banana on ice. The reformer also helps the Pilates exercises hone in on specific muscles, working to chisel core muscles in order to keep the body aligned, balanced, and strong. The Timonium location presents more than 25 classes in everything from yoga, Pilates, and Zumba to kickboxing and spinning.