Inside Bikram Yoga’s two practice spaces, instructors crank up the thermostat to sultry temperatures to loosen up students’ muscles during 90-minute yoga sessions, helping increase flexibility and range of motion while building muscle tone. Instructors pay special attention to coaching newbies during each class, teaching Bikram’s 26 postures and two breathing exercises to help students of all fitness levels stretch out joints or baby injuries and appendages put out of commission due to hostile negotiations during teamwork-building human knots. Each instructor trained directly under Bikram Choudhury—the creator of Bikram Yoga—to ensure that pupils receive safe, easy-to-follow instruction that bolsters health and clears minds.
Informed by their careers in healthcare fields such as physical therapy and sports medicine, the three directors at All-Access Fitness Academy champion an educational approach to exercise. In an effort to steer clear of the impersonal atmosphere of larger gyms, the academy's staff goes out of their way to interact with guests and readily demonstrates proper technique on a range of equipment and cardio machines. Every one of the center's personal trainers has earned his or her certification as a strength and conditioning specialist, enabling them to dispense both customized fitness plans and clinical explanations of the results. Through programs such as group classes that adapt their routines every six weeks, the gym centers its results-oriented programs on the aims of individual members, not just those of the township's local supervillian.
The Cardio Corner's nine certified instructors propel exercisers toward fitness goals during classes teeming with kickboxing moves and other dynamic methods of sculpting the physique. During cycling classes, they help up to 12 stationary riders envision the towering hills, freeing descents, and detours through enemies' flower gardens that are fundamental to an outdoor bicycle ride. Filled with deep breaths and slow, graceful poses, all-levels yoga classes provide a calming alternative to cardio classes' vigorous tempos.
On a recent birthday, Shawn Shaw reflected on her life. There had been lessons learned about love, happiness, and the inherent beauty of life that is present even amid disappointment. For Shawn, a dedicated practice of yoga and meditation was the wellspring for many of the lessons learned. The teenage Shawn kept fit as a distance runner, first picking up yoga as a supplementary form of exercise and stretching. It wasn't until a few years later, amid a storm of personal struggles, that she discovered the healing properties of daily practice. Today she credits yoga with transforming her physical and emotional health and cultivating a peaceful attitude. Moreover, her newfound clarity and mental presence become something Shawn had to share. She opened her own studio, Metrowest Yoga, in 2005. Now with two locations in Westborough and Worcester, the curriculum includes Shawn's own invention, Myoga Hot Hatha, which is grounded in stillness and allows students to hold poses longer than usual as they make peace between breath and body.
Metrowest Yoga's studio focuses on building a strong healthy body and cultivating a calm, peaceful mind. The styles offered are mostly vigorous in a heated room but some gentle restorative classes are offered too. Regularly scheduled classes include Vinyasa or Flow, Hatha and Ashtanga styles. Beginner’s classes or a 6 week Brand New Beginner’s course are also offered.
Climbers cling to the carefully placed hand grips, strategizing their way up the side of the rock-like cliff. They have come to Watertown to conquer the Central Rock Gym's 28,000 square feet of indoor mountains, climbing walls reaching 50' in height. The new Watertown location with temperature control and air-conditioning is one of Central Rock Gym's four indoor facilities spread throughout New England. At each, experts guide novice climbers through introductory classes or supervise more seasoned members scaling the walls' highest heights. Memberships unlock access to all four facilities, gear for the first month, and the use exercise equipment and weights. In addition to climbing and conditioning, members can also take advantage of fitness classes ranging from yoga and Pilates to Zumba and spin sessions. Gyms also welcome non-members, whether they're trying things out with a day pass or interested in events including birthday parties, summer camps, and corporate team-building breakouts.