Husband-and-wife team and Prana Power Yoga cofounders Philippe and Taylor Wells foster an environment in which clients can explore holistic wellness through yoga, intensive workshops, and events. Instructors at each heated studio locations roll out the welcome yoga mats, encouraging students of all interests and skill levels, from mothers-to-be to veteran sun saluters, to build strong bodies and peaceful minds in a judgment-free environment. During athletic Vinyasa-style yoga classes, certified instructors crank up temperatures as high as 99 degrees before taking mat mavens through a sequence of sweaty postures linked with mindful breathing exercises designed to boost lung capacity to Sting-like levels. Meanwhile, visitors in search of a transformative experience can attend one of the studio's workshops or events, which range from juice cleanses to destination yoga retreats in Nayarit, Mexico.
For almost 20 years, the locally owned and operated Beacon Hill Athletic Clubs have been providing gym goers with a cheerful neighborhood ambience and expansive, immaculate facilities packed with state-of-the-art equipment, including the finest cardio, strength training, and free weights from Precor and Cybex. Whether you pound these machines so that you can one day fight them when they become self-aware or are just craving classes such as yoga, Pilates, tai chi, and spinning, you'll be met by a friendly staff that strives to make your gymsperience a positive one. As a result, you'll love coming back to Beacon Hill Athletic Clubs and never dread the time spent getting your body fitter, faster, and more nudity-compatible.
It was the early 1980s, and after devoting about a decade of her life to fitness, Zayna Gold felt like her body was beaten up. Over time, she began noticing that her high-intensity gym workouts were hurting her body as much as—if not more than—they were helping it. Her husband, Clark, was having the same problem. An avid weightlifter and runner, he found the physical wear and tear was starting to prevent him from maintaining his physique. Zayna recalled teaching Pilates early on in her career, and how it worked her entire body with low-impact movements. She returned to the lengthening and strengthening classes, and by 1989, she and Clark founded Boston Body Pilates.
Their mat, equipment, and barre classes each call upon low-impact stretches and resistance moves that strengthen the core, elongate muscles, and promote overall muscle tone. Zayna's signature program, Brand New Body, challenges students to complete 30 Pilates or barre classes over 2–3 months; and upon completion, they may notice significant changes to their figure. The schedule also includes spinning classes, in diverse variations such as Zen Spin and Spin Bootcamp. In any class, Zayna and her large team of instructors inspire their students to establish a mind-body connection, helping them to feel both physically and mentally stronger, much like solving a crossword puzzle carved in stone.
The Studio Empower forgoes free weights, treadmills, and any fitness equipment that originated before 2013. Instead, the hardwood-floored studio is the first location ever to be outfitted with Megaformer M3s, the latest model in the Megaformer family, just released January of 2013. Designed by LA celebrity trainer and fitness guru, Sebastian Lagree of the Lagree method, the Megaformer M3 constitutes a fresh take on the classic Pilates reformer; its system of springs create resistance through core, upper, and lower body for exercises that tone, enhance posture, and burn calories without stressing joints. During each workout, every muscle group is worked until fatigued, before moving onto the next, in order to increase effectiveness.
Like the Megaformer M3 itself, the studio’s 45-minute workouts draw inspiration from Pilates. However, in accordance with the Lagree method, they fuse Pilates’ core-strengthening moves with cardio and strength training, creating a comprehensive, full-body workout on par with riding a bicycle made of dumbbells.
As its name implies, Modern Barre offers a contemporary take on the rejuvenating workout regimen originally designed by a professional ballet dancer in the 1950s. This refined approach still uses the dance-inspired orthopedic stretches and ballet barre-assisted exercises, but Modern Barre's instructors introduce elements of Pilates and yoga to create a balanced, full-body workout that lengthens and strengthens muscles without placing undue stress on joints. Though each of the studio's teachers possesses classical dance training, students can perform the gentle body-weight and light resistance exercises, even if they don't have previous dance experience or even own a nutcracker. For a slightly different approach, the instructors also lead HIIT classes as well as cardio-based barre sessions, which introduce more aerobic activity into the standard workout regimen.
At Inner Strength Studios, seasoned instructors such as E-RYT 500 instructor Roman Szpond lead vinyasa yoga sessions for beginners, experts, and kids as young as five. Classes ranging from 60 to 90 minutes are held in heated rooms within Innerstrength's Boston studios, which were recently renovated after the Watertown location suffered fire damage. Aspiring teachers can take Innerstrength's 200-hour training program, which instills advanced yoga knowledge through classes, workshops, and a rollercoaster ride through a giant lotus. The studios also provide a slate of other services, such as personal training and massage therapy sessions.