Ann Kamhi Toran credits Pilates practice with saving her dancing career. After a major back injury threatened her ability to continue performing, Ann devoted herself to Pilates, and the exercises helped rehabilitate her body so effectively that she was eventually promoted to soloist after recovering. Although she stopped professionally dancing more than 20 years ago, Ann still practices Pilates daily.
Ann’s husband, Dr. Errol Toran, also is a believer in the rejuvenating capabilities of Pilates, and he suggested it to his chiropractic patients, incorporating the exercises into their physical rehabilitation. Together, Ann and Dr. Toran decided to create a studio that shared these benefits with the general public, introducing the time-honored exercise techniques that improve posture and build lean, toned muscles.
The studio boasts four locations throughout the New York area, each featuring an arsenal of traditional Pilates equipment. The signature apparatus, the Reformer, generates gentle resistance with a system of springs, pulleys, and miniature black holes. Students push and pull against this resistance while performing sequences of relatively simple movements that require unwavering mental focus to maintain the ideal technique and alignment. By emphasizing controlled, quality movements over flailing your body against a boulder, Pilates exercises can evenly tone muscles across the entire body, with a particular emphasis on the core muscle groups.
Ann and Dr. Toran encourage their instructors to take initiative when leading classes and tailor the pacing or sequence to accommodate students, but each studio does host sessions for particular skill levels. Introductory and Level 1 classes work to develop form and technique, whereas the more advanced sessions begin to include modified exercises or long-division flashcards to ensure a more challenging workout.
The grappling fighting style known as jujitsu first came to Brazil in 1914 stored in the hands and mind of Mitsuyo Maeda, a Japanese immigrant and master of the art. He only stayed a year, but it was enough time to plant the seeds for a new jujitsu academy in Brazil. One of the first students at that academy was Hélio Gracie.
Hélio absorbed the fighting style quickly, adapting many of the techniques to suit his small frame. He discovered methods of leverage that allowed him to execute joint locks, choke holds, and takedowns on much larger opponents, forming the core of his new Gracie jujitsu method. Ultimately, Hélio's son Royce brought the fighting style to America, famously winning UFC 1, 2, and 4 by defeating opponents many times his own size. Suddenly, Americans lined up to learn this newly unveiled Brazilian fighting style, demonstrating their eagerness by folding themselves inside a box and shipping themselves south.
Relson Gracie, Hélio's second oldest son, chose to be an ambassador of his family's fighting style. He was already teaching abroad when his little brother Royce skyrocketed Brazilian jujitsu to popularity. He founded his first school under the name Relson Gracie Jiu-Jitsu in Hawaii, and as the art became popular, he opened new branches of his academy all across the United States. Today, he visits more than 40 academies and associations, sharing his knowledge with thousands of students. In his absence, he leaves instructors whom he personally trained to oversee the education of aspiring fighters.
In 1929, three highly regarded patrons of the arts joined forces to found an institution that would break away from the conservative archetype of an art museum. Abby Aldrich Rockefeller, Lillie P. Bliss, and Mary Quinn Sullivan could hardly have guessed that their mutual brainchild—The Museum of Modern Art, or MoMa—would someday transform into an archetype all its own. The museum’s original director, Alfred H. Barr Jr., moved to create the first-ever multidepartmental structure, with various departments devoted to architecture and design, film and video, and photography. These were in addition to the standard painting, sculpture, and visual-arts exhibits found in nearly every other museum to date. The public's response was overwhelmingly positive. After outgrowing two spaces, MoMA moved to its Midtown location, where it stands to this day. MoMA's initial gift of eight prints and one drawing has exploded to encompass a collection of more than 150,000 paintings, sculptures, drawings, prints, photos, and design pieces. This collection continues to offer a wide-angle view into modern art and has spilled over into a massive library that houses more than 300,000 volumes. Every day, art lovers from around the world make their way through the museum’s structure, stopping at galleries that house iconic works by Picasso, Bourgeois, Warhol, Rauschenberg, and others. A constant influx of exhibitions keeps MoMA's many walls alive in the spirit of its progressive founders.
At first sight, David Barton Gym might appear to be an art gallery or swank pad complete with pounded steel plating, leather-wrapped door handles, and weekly DJ sets, but a second glance reveals a 30,000-square-foot fitness haven overlooking the Chicago River. The designer gym is loaded with free weights, cardio machines, a group cycling studio, steam rooms, a Russian bath, and a studio for yoga class. Meet up with an experienced hardbody personal trainer and melt fat like a George Foreman grill with a barrage of pushups, sit-ups, or 20 minutes on the TV-topped elliptical machine. Renew your will from the on-site therapist from Delos Wellness and let them unkink the knots that prevent you from having the strength needed to throw a dictionary through a thicker dictionary.
E! News anchor and Fashion Police host Giuliana Rancic was born in Italy but she has strong ties to Chicago—namely, her husband Bill, the Trump-approved entrepreneur and restaurateur behind RPM Italian. In the My Chicago by Giuliana Rancic collection, the star of Giuliana & Bill gives the scoop on her favorite local spots to get glammed up, be entertained in style, and even shop for Bill.
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Exercising with friends allows you to morally support each other, and, when the time comes, to have the collective muscle to beat up an asteroid headed for Earth. Get strength in numbers with this Groupon.
Click here for an online schedule of classes. This deal is valid at the Battery Park and Washington Square Park locations only.
Stacy draws from more than 17 years experience in outdoor fitness training when leading her classes atop the pavement and under the trees of New York City parks. Using a background in tae kwon do, capoeira, kickboxing, and boot-camp drills, Stacy creates high-intensity routines that combine cardio and strength exercises that can be adjusted for various fitness levels. She forgoes fancy machines and instead uses the environment, sculpting strong arms with 15-pound weights brought in by clients or wiping sweat from the brow with a nearby leaf.
Stacy doesn’t just stay active through boot-camp instruction: She also leads an active lifestyle speaking at workshops and corporate events. Furthermore, she contributes articles to the Huffington Post, leads retreats, and teaches fitness while traveling to international locales, such as India.
Hudson is in the heart of New York, walking distance from Time Warner Center and Columbus Circle. This 4-star hotel is close to Broadway and Times Square.
Make yourself at home in one of the 866 air-conditioned rooms featuring refrigerators and flat-screen televisions. Cable programming and iPod docking stations are provided for your entertainment, while complimentary wireless Internet access keeps you connected. Bathrooms have designer toiletries and hair dryers. Conveniences include safes and irons/ironing boards, as well as multi-line phones with voice mail.
Rec, Spa, Premium Amenities
Take advantage of recreation opportunities such as a fitness facility or take in the view from a rooftop terrace and a garden. Additional features include complimentary wireless Internet access, babysitting/childcare, and a pool table.
Take advantage of the hotel's room service (during limited hours). Relax with a refreshing drink at one of the 2 bars/lounges.
Business, Other Amenities
Featured amenities include a business center, audiovisual equipment, and currency exchange. Event facilities at this hotel consist of exhibit space and a meeting/conference room. Parking (subject to charges) is available onsite.