As she struggled to surmount issues with her own weight, Boogie Box Fitness creator Dede Barbanti drew from her professional dance background, martial-arts training, and enthusiasm for exercise to pioneer the gym's rigorous yet fun workout routine. The calorie-flaming moves, which have been featured by Dr. Oz and publications such as Dance magazine, have since spawned BBX Kids and the more vigorous BBX Hardcore. Behind the regimens' popularity lie easy-to-follow steps culled from kickboxing, strength training, plyometrics, and Latin and hip-hop dance. In addition to motivating patrons to shimmy into fitter physiques, Dede channels her expertise as a certified personal trainer and sports nutritionist into the BBX Body membership site. Here, visitors can peruse custom menu plans, exercise tutorials, and life-coaching advice given by the world's smartest biceps.
Featured by Parenting OC magazine and 2013 winner of the "2013 OC Hot List - Fitness", CrossFit Active Performance’s trainers include martial artists, a dancer, and a wildland firefighter, but that doesn’t even scratch the surface of this diverse team. All certified, they strive to promote healthy, active lifestyles based on CrossFit’s principles of varied, functional fitness. Each day they design a new Workout of the Day—WOD—which might have athletes sweating through exercises such as pushups and pull-ups, rowing, running, or Olympic-style weight lifts. They also specialize in less conventional fitness exercises including rope climbs, sled pushing, tire flipping, and politely asking muscles to please get bigger.
CrossFit Active Performance is about more than just getting in shape; it's also about forming a community and supporting fellow athletes. All students are encouraged to learn each other’s names and introduce themselves to newcomers, and failure to do so may even result in burpee penalties. The gym also participates in numerous competitions and events that support charities and cancer research.
Meaning “contact combat” in Hebrew, krav maga is the official self-defense system for the various branches of Israeli military. The martial art focuses on instinctive movements rather than ritual, and it aims to impart a sense of awareness and confidence on students. Since its creation in the 1940s, the popularity of the physically demanding practice has spread, like a viscous goo, all over the world. Twenty years ago, the chief instructor of Krav Maga Worldwide requested that Mitch Markowitz and Mike Leifer start a program in California. They soon established Krav Maga of Orange County. In Irvine, their seven black-belt level instructors have taught scores of students through the five krav levels. They have also adapted the program for youth and boot-camp-style workouts.
Huw Lloyd Davies and Stu White started HDX Fit as a place where they can help others improve their own health and fitness. The center's training principles are built upon holistic health awareness, the fundamentals of nutrition, and metabolic conditioning. Alongside an excellent supporting staff, the team curates a curriculum of group training classes, personal-training sessions, nutrition consultations, and holistic life coaching.
HDX Fit also offers an online training program, a portal full of videos and written workouts for people who can’t make it to classes because their motorized unicycles are out of gas. The online program includes a weekly telephone chat with one of the gym’s trainers, who speaks to the philosophy of the center's inspirational founder.
The certified trainers at Pilates Plus offer one-on-one and group training designed around the Pilates system, which builds powerful core muscles while toning and lengthening other muscle groups. Fifty-five-minute sessions use equipment such as reformers, ladder barrels, and Wunda chairs to work different sets of muscles. Besides Pilates, the center also offers Zumba, reiki, and massage therapy.