For Yoga Loft Hawaii’s founder, Lisa Sochocki, yoga isn’t just a way to stretch and strengthen the body. It’s a tried-and-true method of ridding the mind of clutter such as worries, anger, and unsolved calculus problems. Without such distractions, students can listen to the wisdom their hearts contain. To build classes that pursue this goal, Lisa and her team of instructors draw upon 400 hours of teacher training and more than a decade of posing practice. Vibrant Vinyasa flow sessions explore sun salutations, arm balances, and backbends amid soothing turquoise walls and a soundtrack of vibrant music. Here, yogis of all levels learn to link poses with deep, relaxing breaths, forming a strong foundation for challenging classes such as power Vinyasa. Yin routines highlight yoga’s power to calm through lengthy poses that flex the body’s connective tissue and unblock its energy pathways. The loft also hosts classes that teach kids aged 4–6 how to melt stress and potty-mouthed snow angels during classes filled with playful poses and relaxation techniques.
As heat bounces off the vibrant orange walls of Bikram Yoga Mililani, a Bikram-certified instructor leads students of all levels through 26 postures that work together to systematically stretch and strengthen every part of the body. The 105-degree heat and 40% humidity work together to loosen up stiff muscles, allowing guests to sink deeper into poses, sweat out toxins, and sweat off misguided clown face paint. After class, students can snack on fresh orange slices or cool off on the outdoor patio while daring the greenery to forward-bend from their roots.
It’s common to see TRX suspension bands wrapped around the palm trees on the beach near Ala Moana Boulevard. The site is home to SOHI Fitness’ outdoor boot camps, which are run by owner and ACE-certified personal trainer Megan Clark, who has a degree in kinesiology and is the only trainer in Hawaii able to certify military personnel as TRX instructors, and her team of experienced trainers. To keep their clients engaged during their indoor and outdoor boot camps, pyramid workouts, and personal-training sessions, they rely on the TRX suspension-training system’s array of exercises, as well as sports drills. These may include sandbag lifting, agility-ladder running, and plyometrics.
Endless rows of machines, friendly staff, and two locations give the no-frills sweat shop a comforting neighborhood feel. Expect to find eligible, state-of-the-art machines, intensive and expert fitness coaching, and a bevy of classes such as yoga, power sculpt, abs and flexibility, and cardio hip-hop.
Walls of hard concrete line the perimeter of CrossFit Ewa Beach’s 6,000-square-foot facility, symbolizing the strength and endurance that exercisers strive to achieve as they sculpt their muscles with barbells, kettlebells, and pull-up bars. Here, seasoned trainers espouse functional training techniques that augment everyday movements such as pushing, squatting, and lifting with exercises inspired by Olympic sports such as gymnastics and full-contact badminton. Head trainer Noel Famy, a Level 2 CrossFit instructor and former Marine, transforms groups of strangers into teammates who motivate one another through moments of intimidation and fatigue. Most workouts last less than 40 minutes and can be tailored to a variety of ages and fitness levels. Famy also propels clients toward their goals during personal-training sessions filled with custom-built workouts and nutritional consultations. His nutritional advice revolves around Whole9’s version of the Paleo Diet, a nutrition regimen based on Stone Age humans’ diet of wild plants and fried velociraptor eggs.
Typically, yoga studios feature glossy wood floors and big windows that let in plenty of natural light. However, at Salt Yoga in Waikiki, the setting is anything but typical: the big windows are instead the wide-open sky, the hardwood floors the gentle waters of a cove. Even the mats are different; instead of standing atop flat beds of foam, yogis balance on specially designed standup paddleboards that float on the surface. Led by certified yoga teacher Peter Jacobsen, students paddle out to the designated spot before executing carefully planned routines while safely anchored in flat water.