As they enter the training circle at Curves, female guests come face-to-face with the smiles of other women. And just as points on a circle share a common distance from the circle's center, workout participants share the experiences of those nearby, trading stations throughout the 30-minute training session. One minute is spent on a piece of strength-training equipment built for feminine frames and designed to work two opposing muscle groups with a single movement. Exercisers then move on to a recovery station, where they run, jog, or dance to maintain heart rates and keep platforms in place during momentary losses of gravity.
In 2014, Curves partnered with celebrity fitness expert Jillian Michaels to design a new take on its traditional circuit. These workouts incorporate functional bodyweight exercises—each with modifications—into the existing sequence, providing a slightly more intense gym experience intended to jump-start metabolisms while still forging lean, toned muscles.
A shared passion in fitness brought The Barre Code's co-founders Jillian Lorenz and Ariana Chernin together in 2009 to form a unique boutique studio crafted around women's fitness. After years of independently choreographing workouts, the duo joined forces to form The Barre Code ?formerly Barre Bee Fit? a fitness program dedicated to crafting workout regimens around the Barre Code mantra. Since 2010, the pair have been teaching classes that uphold the Barre Code's mantra and promote cardiovascular conditioning, strength-training, and restoration.
In a short time, The Barre Code has expanded from a small studio space to a national franchise which includes multiple locations throughout the U.S. Workouts center around the ballet barre and feature stamina-building exercises that help rapidly build stronger arms, abs, thighs, and glutes. New routines are available each week and classes that include kickboxing, high-intensity interval training, yoga, and dance continually evolve to keep up with fitness innovations. Participants can also count on instructors to regularly introduce new props and moves to keep them interested and seeing results.
The Shape Up Shoppe Fitness Club for Women is a women's-only gym where members get in shape and have fun doing it, with a focus on group fitness classes. The class curriculum includes aerobics, boxing, Boxbag, and indoor bootcamp, among other disciplines, and interested parties can even sign up for personal training and lessons in tennis and sparring. Best of all, the club features a number of cool, club-like amenities, including a bamboo room and tiki deck where exercisers can cool down after class. The gym, which has been in its same location for 33 years, is family-friendly, catering to mothers and daughters alike.
Michael Garver and his team of instructors lead students through high-energy Zumba classes. As globally influenced music thumps through the studio, the instructors demonstrate easy-to-follow dance moves that yield stronger, more flexible muscles. Meanwhile, wood-laminate floors cushion the impact caused by enthusiastic dance moves, keeping joints healthy and able to hinge without regular application of oil.
No matter the hour, the rhythmic beat of sneakers hitting treadmills resounds in Snap Fitness's 24-hour studio. The network of gyms stretches across the country, each housing state-of-the art cardio and strength-training equipment that scorches huge batches of calories, like an Easy-Bake Oven scorches cookies when it's souped up with nitrous oxide. IPod hookups and TVs turn treadmills and stair steppers into personal entertainment centers. Unlike impersonal big-box gyms, Snap Fitness's staff subtracts intimidation from the experience with free equipment orientations, custom workout plans, nutrition tips, and hand-crocheted workout shorts for all members. During staffed hours, peppy instructors lead fitness classes such as turbo kickboxing, plyometrics, and aerobic blast.
Fueled by the belief that fitness and nutrition go hand in hand, WCA-lauded chiropractor Dr. Ken Krimpelbein puts his knowledge of the human body and skills in diet management to use helping people transform their lifestyles. In addition to offering exercise classes, such as Zumba and yoga, Dr. Krimpelbein and his team stock their naturally lit, TV-lined workout area with free weights, plate-loaded equipment, and cardio machines, including Woodway treadmills, elliptical machines, and stationary bicycles. On the nutrition side of the spectrum, they offer weight-loss and detoxification guidance via their FirstLine Therapy program. They also run an onsite juice bar, where members can rev up with a healthful snack and a smoothie.