Markisha Beckford studies the human body the way an engineer might study a particularly complex machine, so it makes sense that she works at a place called The Fitness Workshop. Having trained with top fitness experts such as Dr. Andrew Weil and Dr. Deepak Chopra, Beckford is fully equipped to help clients adopt healthier dietary and exercise routines. Her holistic approach to health examines how these two areas—nutrition and fitness—are connected, and how an improvement to one might benefit the other. When she's not leading classes in spinning and Pilates, Beckford offers nutritional advice and posts healthy recipes on her website.
Kashmir Hands’ owner, Dina M. Giugliano, possesses an unending fascination with the abilities of the human body. She fosters her enchantment through three primary avenues: massage, yoga, and doula services, a Greek tradition that combines the duties of a pregnancy counselor with those of a midwife. Her thumbs relieve patrons’ tension and coax out toxins during therapeutic deep-tissue massage, a soothing avenue to injury recovery, particularly when paired with a gentle form of yoga. There are more gentle and more intense forms to choose from, as Giugliano offers 17 types of yoga classes, each developed for a certain age group, level of athletic ability, or species.
While exercise enthusiasts, celebrities, and athletes have practiced Joseph Pilates' unique style of controlled movements since the 1920s, it wasn’t until recently that studios such as The Pilates Experience brought the workout down from the mountain. After introducing guests to the specialized machines, including the Reformer, Tower, Cadillac, and ladder barrels, instructors lead exercises that use bodyweight as resistance. To help students perform the moves correctly, they cap the machine-based classes at six people and move from station to station handing out tips on proper alignment. Other classes include a Pilates-infused yoga class, heart-pumping indoor-cycling sessions, and muscle-toning total-body circuit training.
Undefeated muay-thai master Andy Singh brings the techniques he perfected while winning eight championships with him when instructing students in the powerful kicks and lightning-fast blows for which his art is renowned. In Singh's brightly lit gym, traditional boxing gloves cushion students' hands as the aspiring martial artists study and spar across the red, padded floor. Occasionally, Singh assembles his classes in standing circles around him as he demonstrates a technique, which students can observe from all angles, whether it’s a particularly difficult kick or a strategy for dominating the dance floor at prom.
At the age of 13, when most kids are writing The Karate Kid fan fiction, David Martucci was beginning his martial-arts training. He eventually transferred his punching prowess into a coaching career that has yielded title-winning students in tournaments such as NAGA and Grapplers Quest. As the head coach of the American Top Team training centers, he's overseen a team of professional fighting trainers that has produced more than 67 pro fighters competing in the UFC and WEC.
Inside the gym's 5,000-square-foot training space, trainers share their sage grappling advice and recipes for coffeecake, molding future champions disciplined in muay thai, MMA, and boxing. Students learn high-level takedowns in the martial-arts room where heavy bags hover over a floor padded in Zebra mats, or how to negotiate the grueling confines of a 22-foot competition cage. Just beyond the training room, people work on writing checks that their fists can cash in the workout facility stockpiled with dumbbells, weight benches, machines, and cardio equipment.
This is a family fitness studio where working out doesn't feel like you're working. The studio offers classes for kids, adults and family. In addition to group classes, there also is CPR/AED certification, health classes and a free Teen Group.
Alongside the massage therapists, aestheticians, and nail technicians of Body Works Day Spa, Body Works Yoga & Pilates helps clients keep their bodies fit with a wide selection of fitness classes. Yoga classes range from beginner-friendly candlelit sessions to intensive Vinyasa sessions. Barre and Pilates classes help tone legs and cores, whereas Zumba burns calories through dance moves set to up-tempo beats. Yoga for kids and toddlers rounds out the studio’s offerings, exposing little ones to a practice that can help them focus their minds and escape their cribs.