Nimble sages with plenteous stockpiles of chi guide students of all skill levels down the path of mindfulness in classes that seek to promote inner health and self-actualization. The experienced clan of instructors combines forces to lead a schedule of calming, focused classes designed to accommodate all skill levels. Beginners can cut their tensile teeth in Chill classes that prop chakras up on sturdy tripods and review basic postures at an approachable pace. The Activate classes further develop strength and flexibility, while one- or two-hour Yoga Heat sessions spark a purgative inferno with athletic explorations of deep asanas and breathing techniques. A serene, communal studio space helps reduce the effects of stress and assists in cleansing the impurities garnered in spiritual mud-wrestling matches.
With programs for children and adults of all ages, Aqua Bella Fitness acts as both a playground and a training center. Its heated indoor pool embodies this versatility by hosting Summer Splash Camp sessions, Red Cross–certified lessons, and water-aerobics classes, which increase resistance on muscles more safely than working out in a quicksand pit. Exercise equipment abounds on the workout floor, where guests can tackle a 30-second circuit or dangle from TRX suspension systems. Though its focus is on promoting healthy lifestyles, the gym also endorses relaxation with day-spa services such as tanning and massage.
Unlike many big-box gyms, Club II has the whole family in mind. In addition to offering fitness services and health coaching for grownups, they host youth camps and daycare services for the kids. They up the ante with tennis and swim lessons, as well as social activities.
With a complete line of Life Fitness and Cybex machines, the Pensacola branch of World Gym upholds the franchise's relentless tradition of providing 24/7 access to fitness. Each device in the cardio stable is hooked up to a personal cable TV and DVD set, allowing runners to finally live out their dreams of running wind sprints through aisle 7 of the electronics store. Conversely, an outdoor workout area beckons the ruggedly inclined with battling ropes and climbing stations. Instructors lead a medley of aerobics and yoga classes, and personal trainers help members to craft their own custom fitness plans.
Riviera Fitness Center's sprawling confines supplements its co-ed and women's-only workout areas with group fitness classes, fitness assessments with a personal trainer, and a sauna. Cinema enthusiasts eye an oversize projector in the cardio theater room, where films play continuously throughout the day and inspire budding buffs to build the strength to arm-wrestle Cruella de Vil. A buffet of free weights and weight machines helps patrons to sculpt and tone newfound brawn. Fitness seekers sweat in the comfortable sanctity of the gym by participating in cardio-heavy classes such as yoga and Zumba or soaking up steam in the sauna. During the included fitness assessment, Riviera Fitness Center's knowledgeable personal trainers will evaluate the musculature of guests’ bodies, helping them to craft targeted workouts to meet goals, drop pounds, and conquer fears of zooming away on a stationary bike.
Today, it's undeniable: Jazzercise is a worldwide empire, spanning more than 1,800 locations and 32,000 weekly classes across the globe. It's also hip; gone are the leotards and legwarmers of the 1980s, replaced with a high-intensity blend of cardio, strength training, kickboxing and power yoga performed to hits by chart-toppers from Shakira to Justin Timberlake. The class formats, which vary according to different toning goals, are just as diverse as the program's move set, with recent additions such as Fusion, Core, and Strike broadening the workouts' variety and application. Instructors cultivate a noncompetitive atmosphere where all exercisers are welcome regardless of age, build, or fitness background. This sense of community keeps Jazzercise devotees coming back, but so too do the results; benefits ranging from weight loss and boosted core strength to increased flexibility and stress relief.
Jazzercise's continued success can be traced to the innovation of its founder, Judi Sheppard Missett. While teaching jazz dance in the 1960s, she decided to step away from tradition by offering an experimental class that allowed her students to simply dance without the judgment of mirrors or the constraints of rigid technique. Little did she know that this ?just for fun? class was the prototype for what would become the Jazzercise sensation.