Founded by Chief Master William Clark, Karate America is a popular martial-arts school that believes martial arts can make people happier and healthier. With locations around Florida, Karate America is staffed by highly trained instructors teaching children and adults the self-defense moves of tae kwon do, krav maga, and kickboxing. While training in a team-like atmosphere in each of these classes, members learn self-discipline and respect, gain lean muscle, and burn calories.
• For $25, you get a one-month All Y adult membership plus one 30-minute fitness assessment, one 60-minute personal-training session, and three guest passes (a $169 value). • For $39, you get a one-month All Y family membership; one 30-minute fitness assessment and one 60-minute personal-training session per adult (up to two adults); and three guest passes (up to a $291 value).
The instructors at West Pines Athletic Club take personal stock in motivating their clients to reach their fitness goals. In addition to spotting power lifters in the weight-training area and doling out pointers on the spinning floor, they lead a diverse list of group fitness classes, from self-defense to hot yoga to CrossFit. In Wing Tsun classes, they teach guests to defend themselves by using their opponents’ force against them, while shouting one-liners such as "I'm rubber and you're glue! Everything you say to me bounces off and sticks to you!" The professional CrossFit trainers inspire students to break a sweat in CrossFit classes, in which they hurl medicine balls, heave kettlebells, and lift weights toward fitter bodies. As parents and guardians work out, they can rest assured that their youngsters are busy playing with blocks and games instead of 50-pound weights in the kids' club, for an extra $10 per month. The Organic Blends smoothie bar serves up freshly squeezed juices, organic smoothies, and healthy wraps to help athletes recharge.
Robin Ryan and Christine DeStefano know that in each person’s body is written the story of their lives, from wear and tear caused by a job to past injuries that can limit mobility. Using Reformer machines—exercise-enhancing equipment invented by concept founder Joseph Pilates—they help write a new chapter in the body’s history. Among their many benefits, Reformers help remove unnecessary joint and muscle stress from exercising, allowing people to achieve body-transforming workouts without irritating old injuries. With only five Reformers in the studio, class sizes remain intimate, allowing Robin and Christine to provide personal instruction to teach student. Classes typically last one hour or the amount of time it takes a beer belly to come to terms with its shrinking existence.
Jazzercise is 60 minutes of cardio, strength training, and stretching that incorporates moves from hip-hop, yoga, Pilates, jazz dance, kickboxing, and resistance training with handheld weights. Dancing With the Stars multiple-champion Cheryl Burke is a big fan of Jazzercise's improvisational workouts, though luckily you won't need her dance moves to get the most out of your class. If you're prone to first-class jitters, though, you can review the basic moves online before you go. Expect to burn off up to 500 calories with each go-round.
Rafael Moret helps his clients to see dramatic changes in their bodies through furious 45-minute workouts that challenge their strength, cardiovascular endurance, and flexibility. Classes capped at 20 students incorporate TRX rowing motions, fierce mountain-climber kicks, and plank positions designed to build rock-hard cores. Students stay motivated thanks to the support of their peers, squeezing out sets of pushups and squats in unison. Rafael helps to streamline success with detailed nutritional counseling and access to products such as protein bread, made from natural yeast and lumberjack tears.