Devan Kline was a pitcher in the minor leagues for the San Francisco Giants, focusing his attention on making it to the majors when another career opportunity blindsided him. In the summers of 2009 and 2010, he began helping Vanessa—the mother of the host family he lived with during home games—train to get back on shape. Devan witnessed firsthand her rapid transformation as she lost 45 pounds, and he saw the positive impact it had on her and her family's lives. The grateful clan told Devan that his time with them had changed their lives, and it’s then that he knew he wanted to dedicate himself to helping others in the same way. That’s when he founded Burn Boot Camp.
Now, Devan—with the help of a coterie of trainers—conducts indoor boot camps in six locations, using exercises that Devan himself used to get into shape during his days as a professional athlete. The team supplements those regimens with loads of body-weight-resistance training and heart-pounding cardio drills that include sprinting short distances or boxing defibrillators.
Since its 1965 founding in Venice Beach, California, Gold's Gym has dotted the globe with more than 600 locations where professional athletes and exercise newbies gather under the umbrella of personal strength. Nearly 3.5 million Gold's members chart and aim for their fitness peaks, perspiring beneath the gaze of certified personal trainers or pedaling beside peers at cycling sessions. In a diverse lineup of group classes, patrons strengthen cores with Pilates, finger-paint pictures of ninjas in martial arts, and amp up heart rates in cardio routines. Many Gold's Gym locations stockpile futuristic amenities, such as cardio machines with individual iPod docks and televisions that help keep patrons motivated.
If the boxing ring and punching bags don't give away GymOne's focus, the staff will. The gym's trainers include boxer and mixed-martial-arts fighter Timothy Parker, martial artist Paul Booe, and boxer Jared Robinson, a talented light welterweight who was ranked number two in his division by USA Boxing in 2008. Together, they manage an array of fitness programs for fighters and athletes alike, including boxing, boot camps, personal training, and grueling OneFit cross-training classes that are designed to improve athletic abilities such as strength and speed.
At Curves, exercisers of all fitness levels move around a circuit of hydraulic-resistance machines that have been designed to work with women's bodies and promote weight loss, protect against osteoporosis, and deal with arthritis. An experienced trainer is always nearby to help manage machine-maneuvering and muscle making. Instead of fiddling with weight stacks, filling medicine balls with medicine, and losing your momentum, the hydraulic machines account for different body weights and fitness levels to create resistance that matches one's abilities, which thereby decreases the risk of soreness or injury. Because traditional lift-and-lower motions create bulky muscles, each machine uses push-and-pull motions to create toned, lean muscles perfect for crushing a grapefruit without looking like you can.
Located within the Q Athletic Performance Center, CrossFit APC helps people get into the best physical shape of their lives. But it doesn't do it the normal way. Instead of the machines, treadmills, and unrippable floorboards that challenge people elsewhere in the gym, CrossFit APC focuses on a broad base of general fitness achieved by functional movements. Depending on the particular Workout of the Day, coaches may have their charges training with medicine balls, deadlifting barbells, and flipping tires. Through it all, a strong team dynamic encourages exercisers to push themselves (and each other) longer and harder than they may have thought possible, resulting in significant gains across a wide spectrum of physical health, from waist size to overall strength.
Snap Fitness's around-the-clock gyms enable members to work on their physical well-being with a cornucopia of fitness equipment. With 24-hour access, members don't have to let The Man tell them when to help themselves to Snap's strength and cardio equipment, which features built-in TVs and other media diversions. For those who exercise during conventional hours, Snap's friendly, unintimidating atmosphere welcomes patrons of all ability levels, unlike schoolyard dodge-ball squads. Members also enjoy nationwide access to all Snap Fitness locations, ideal for working out while traveling. For a dose of custom advice, patrons can seek out a personal-training session with a certified coach, who helps them assess and address their fitness goals. Clients reap the benefit of individual attention as a personal trainer helps them tackle weight loss, prepare for an arm-wrestling competition, or unveil the mysteries of arcane cable-weight machines.