Oscar Ochoa's passion for salsa dancing sprouted at age 9, grew rapidly at age 18 when he began taking formal lessons, and blossomed at age 24 when he won first place at a salsa competition. Today, the founder of Miami Salsa Driven combines his dancing expertise with the physical discipline he's developed from years of practicing tae kwon do and Brazilian jujitsu to lead detail-oriented salsa lessons. His team puts a big emphasis on creating an environment in which beginners feel welcome and unintimidated by advanced dancers trying to show off complex moves, such as the iceless triple axel. Students have ranged from seasoned dancers to a first-timer police-department captain, who actually ended up joining a professional dance team. Located inside the Tempo Music and Dance Academy, Miami Salsa Driven's classes focus on improving students' self-confidence and fitness levels with hands-on instruction and practice. One of the studio's walls is completely covered in full-length mirrors, allowing dancers to adjust their posture to match the instructor's or enjoy uninterrupted eye contact with themselves.
The inspiring trainers at each MetaBody location lead troops of workouteers in results-oriented workouts several times weekly. Sweat sessions utilize a variety of exercises and disciplines to produce full-body results in a supportive environment, ideal for beginners and hard-core core-hardeners alike. During any class, motivational instructors will use the instinctual distrust of routine to their advantage. Begin a day of litigating with a refreshing early-morning boot-camp session, or wind down by burning evidence and pounds with a late-evening yoga class. Muscles are kept guessing with new and challenging moves during each session, so participants never fall into a boring, ineffective routine, such as regular teeth brushing. In addition to the fitness classes, students receive a success guide to help prepare for imminent pound loss, a nutrition guide, and a $100 gift certificate for individual coaching. Because the pass sets a 5 or 10-class cap at any given location, roving fitness mavens can further shake up their workout regimens by vetting a series of classes or instructors that work best for them.
US 1 Fitness has sculpted local physiques for nearly 20 years in a 24-hour workout facility equipped with helpful staff and parent-friendly childcare. Designed for students of all skill sets, 25 weekly classes sling supportive group workouts that make muscles burn with satisfaction, like an insult uttered from the lips of a sarcastic fire swallower. Spinning students pedal toward fitness goals atop Johnny G bikes, as Zumba workouts incite a metabolic brushfire with fiery dance moves inspired by salsa, samba, and tango. Like a three-legged race with Sigmund Freud, yoga classes unite both mind and body with sinew-stretching poses, strength work, and focusing exercises, and Absolute Abs chisels cement-like stomachs with 15 minutes of intense core-centric conditioning. Consult the class schedule for specific dates and times.
Athlete Ego Crossfit's team of instructors could mount a convincing mission to colonize a hostile planet. The staff comes from backgrounds that include the military, organized sports, martial arts, exercise science, nutrition, and firefighting. Together, they blend their varied experience into a hard-hitting Marine Corps–style boot camp and freestyle cross-training program designed to kick-start the performance of amateur, high-school, or professional athletes. Lessons take place in a no nonsense 14,000-square-foot indoor/outdoor facility stocked with Olympic weights, kettlebells, climbing ropes, sandbags, rings, and weight sleds. To fine-tune athletes, the crew supplements sports performance training with nutritional advice.
Jazzercise is 60 minutes of cardio, strength training, and stretching that incorporates moves from hip-hop, yoga, Pilates, jazz dance, kickboxing, and resistance training with handheld weights. Dancing With the Stars multiple-champion Cheryl Burke is a big fan of Jazzercise's improvisational workouts, though luckily you won't need her dance moves to get the most out of your class. If you're prone to first-class jitters, though, you can review the basic moves online before you go. Expect to burn off up to 500 calories with each go-round.
The sushi is sea-worthy at Buddha Sushi Bar. During meals, fresh rolls float in wooden boats down a stainless-steel-bottomed "river," inviting diners to pluck off a plate at will. But the paper lanters that line the counter-style tables also illuminate a la carte creations. Signature maki rolls pair fresh fish with surprising ingredients, such as pineapple chili, cilantro, and ponzu truffle. A selection of sake and imported beer keeps diners from distilling their own wine out of soy sauce.