Ten years ago, Jon Haas counted himself among other out-of-shape office workers. He'd begun to fill out and develop back pain thanks to long workdays spent in front of a computer screen. To stave off the effects of his sedentary lifestyle, Jon began performing short, powerful workouts in the comfort of his hotel room, often using simply his own bodyweight and a chair. Then he added a kettlebell. Eventually, the exercises gained such popularity among his family, friends, and coworkers that Jon opened Warrior Fitness Gym, which offers a variety of fitness classes, including boxing and martial arts, to combat ill health and extra pounds.
After several years of teaching out of rec centers, school cafeterias, and even fire houses, Westampton Martial Arts now has a permanent training facility. The school is owned by the Kirkpatrick family, and their deep roots in the area have inspired them to offer classes for just about every segment of their community, from wee ones to teens to grandparents who want to impress their teens. Among other techniques, students learn how to stay fit and defend themselves through Brazilian jujitsu, hapkido, karate, tae kwon do, and muay-thai kickboxing.
Though Retro Fitness may boast a time-tested approach to fitness, the gym itself is anything but old fashioned. The stationary bikes are hooked up to the Internet, and treadmills sport personal TVs. Guests can also take a variety of group fitness classes, including yoga, kickboxing, and Zumba.
The professional staff and certified personal trainers at Optimal Sport Health Club, a popular chain of boutique fitness centers in Philadelphia, want to help their clients get into the best shape of their lives. The facilities have everything members need to reach their workout goals, whether they want to build lean muscle, lose weight, or simply get stronger.
Here, clients can work out with the cardio and strength-training equipment or head over to the group fitness studio to take classes in everything from Pilates to step class to yoga. Personal trainers are on hand for those looking to ramp up their fitness routines.
When she was a child, Asa Cansler struggled with her weight. This experience pushed the owner of H.O.P.E. Fit Club to transform her body and eventually become a nutritionist and fitness trainer. But she's not just any fitness trainer—Cansler is certified by Billy Blanks, the eight-time World Champion and founder of Tae Bo Fitness as well as the American Council of Exercise. This certification allows her to lead others through the pulse-pounding, body-morphing Tae Bo routine. A combination of boxing, dance, and martial arts, the workout helps students shed unwanted pounds and tone limbs and torsos until they qualify as body doubles for Greek statues. And, to ensure other kids don't have to deal with the same struggles that she did, Cansler also welcomes kids ages 5-17 to workout for free with a paying adult.
Equipment: Spinning bikes, TRX, dumbells, battle ropes, bands
Students should bring: Water and towel
Average class length: 30-60 minutes
Number of Staff: 1–5
Class location: Indoors only
Registration required: No
Good for beginners: Yes
Guests allowed: Yes
Parking: Parking lot
Do you believe in the maxim, "No pain, no gain”? Why or why not?
At Elite Cycle & Fitness we believe in a close-knit fitness community. Clients keep each other motivated and that also ensures that each client will get results. Committment is the key. We also provide a friendly clean atmosphere within our brand new studio.
Exercise is challenging, and people frequently give up on their fitness routines. How do you keep clients motivated?
Our certified trainers keep our clients motivated with personalized attention.
What's the most radical physical transformation you've seen a client make?
One client lost 30 pounds.