The instructors at Premier Martial Arts are not only passionate about teaching martial arts and fitness, they're also graduates of a rigorous training process. Premier Martial Arts requires all of its teachers to not only complete their own basic training, but to receive 40 hours of continuing martial-arts and instructor-education classes yearly. This ensures that all classes are of the highest quality, whether they be krav maga, kickboxing, or jujitsu. They also extend their learning to students of all ages, starting with classes for kids aged 5–12 and continuing through adults.
For sensei Vanessa Solis, martial arts teaches more than just kicks and jabs––it opens a pathway for self-improvement. Through traditional Japanese shotokan karate, practitioners balance their mental and physical selves by practicing deep, strong stances; correct posture and alignment; stretching; sparring; and respecting their opponent. Solis not only enjoys practicing shotokan karate's linear movements but also teaching them to children, adults, and families in daily classes, organized by age and favorite Bruce Lee movie. Fitness-based cardio kickboxing and core-strength training sessions round out the class roster, tightening abs and inspiring a healthy sweat.
Westchester Fight Club accommodates those looking to lose weight, compete professionally, or unleash inner loathing for stuffed canvas bags. The gym contains both a caged MMA octagon and matted areas fit for covering the fundamental techniques of boxing, Brazilian jujitsu, and muay thai kickboxing.
Classes encourage trainees to wrestle with peers and grappling dummies or build muscle tone by throwing punches and kicks at heavy bags and target mitts. Though most MMA sessions are coed, the studio does offer ladies-only time for cardio kickboxing and conditioning sessions. Kids? MMA classes also give tots the chance to defend themselves against bullies and point-of-purchase advertising.
Like mounting an HDTV on a terra-cotta warrior, Excel Yoga blends the ancient and the modern, shepherding students of all experience levels through serene yoga sessions, sultry belly-dancing lessons, and high-energy kickboxing and boot-camp fitness classes. A sense of community weaves throughout the studio, from the eco-friendly bamboo flooring to courses that bring families into the fitness fold, such as Kids Yoga and Mommy & Me Yoga.
Beyond its slate of exercise classes, workshops deepen yogis’ relationship with various aspects of yoga. The Anatomy Workshop, for example, blends discussion and practice to explore how certain poses can relieve physical disorders. Excel Yoga even cultivates its own fleet of enthusiastic instructors through intensive teacher training that outfits prospective pedagogues with the knowledge, poses, and sweat-proof grade books they need to lead classes.