What's the use of self-defense if you're not nimble or strong enough to deploy the moves properly? Sifu Gus Gates answers that by incorporating fitness into his Shaolin kung fu training. When he's not teaching kung fu's village style to kids, teens, and adults, he's overseeing group fitness classes designed to improve strength, flexibility, and balance—the three keys to winning a presidential logrolling contest. For more concentrated doses of exercise, his team of personal trainers schedule one-on-one workouts.
Clarity, connection, and community. It's Yoga Everyone's philosophy, as they work with the belief that everyone—no matter their experience with yoga—can find clarity through a yoga practice. And in turn, this clarity yields authentic connections, both internally and with others, to help support a vibrant community. Yoga Everyone lives up to its name, thanks to classes for both kids, adults, and seniors, including social flexibility yoga for children with special needs such as autism. Adult classes range from basic beginner sessions and restorative yoga to cardio flow and Level II classes, and stand-alone meditation sessions include mindfulness and loving-kindness sessions. Specialty programs include therapeutic yoga care classes that cater to students with chronic conditions, clients recovering from surgery or illness, or those suffering from conditions such as high stress, sleep issues, or anxiety.
James Deirmendjian had a decorated career as a brazilian jujitsu practitioner, winning martial-arts competitions and teaching submission grappling. He's parlayed that success into opening Fight Fit Training, where he helps clients get fit through boxing and kickboxing training, kettlebell workouts, and traditional lifting.
The California Health & Longevity Institute eases Golden State bodies and minds with a comprehensive approach to wellness, integrating five disciplines of care. Licensed professionals perform a soothing array of complementary alternative services that combine Eastern and Western medicines and omit the works of prime-meridian snake-oil surgeons. Acupuncture painlessly engages innate healing responses with hair-thin needles, and acupressure treatments mimic the therapeutic effect with manual pressure instead of slender pins. Energy healing employs touch to influence internal systems and balance physical, emotional, and spiritual scales. Medical-hypnotherapy sessions use clinical techniques that reinforce subconscious signals to achieve deep relaxation and defeat old habits such as chewing other people's fingernails.
Few professionals can credit Flashdance with rerouting the course of their career. But the unconventional dance moves Richard Giorla saw in the film motivated the former Pennsylvania Ballet member to hit the streets of his new home, Manhattan, to learn break-dancing moves from dancers at the heart of the movement, trading his ballet expertise as payment. His dance career was in full swing when he was sidelined with an injury. After undergoing physical therapy, he was still not ready to take the stage, so he started teaching a ballet-barre class. Though he appreciated its stretching and toning components, Richard craved a more aerobic workout. So he created his own solution—Cardio Barre.
The workout consists of high-energy, no-impact movements that help students sculpt the long, slender body of a dancer without ever having to step foot in a traditional dance studio. As they balance at the ballet barre, pupils direct all their focus to one muscle group at a time while the entire body stays in motion. The approach’s pudge-melting abilities have made the fitness method a favorite of many health magazines and celebrities.
Cardio Barre’s Thousand Oaks location is piloted by lifelong friends Lili Merhavi-Surkin and Kim Melcon. The two first met 22 years ago in college and remained friends as they married, had kids, and pursued their master’s degrees. As they both work toward licensure as marriage and family therapists, they lead barre workouts to help maintain the vital balance between mental and physical health while motivating others to do the same.
Since its 1965 founding in Venice Beach, California, Gold's Gym has dotted the globe with more than 600 locations where professional athletes and exercise newbies gather under the umbrella of personal strength. Nearly 3.5 million Gold's members chart and aim for their fitness peaks, perspiring beneath the gaze of certified personal trainers or pedaling beside peers at cycling sessions. In a diverse lineup of group classes, patrons strengthen cores with Pilates, finger-paint pictures of ninjas in martial arts, and amp up heart rates along to the pulsating soundtracks of Les Mills routines. Many Gold's Gym locations stockpile futuristic amenities, such as cardio machines with individual iPod docks and televisions that help keep patrons motivated.
Ben travelled the world during his time in the Army Medical Corps. He started in Air Assault school, helping soldiers reach their physical peak, before serving in El Salvador and Honduras where he helped soldiers learn to survive in the jungle, and then in Belgium where he trained soldiers for urban combat. But Ben's real passion to help others achieve physical health came when he came back to civilian life to help care for his ailing father. To best help him, Ben became a registered nurse, and from that moment on, has dedicated himself to helping others avoid preventable diseases and live life to the fullest. Today, he leads boot camp classes and personal training sessions, using his Army training to help clients of all levels reach their fitness goals, improve their nutrition, and boost their overall health.