Bathed in the gentle glow of subdued, relaxing light, Impressions Day Spa’s talented staff deploys upwards of 20 years of industry experience as they lavish bodies in serenity-inducing services. The spa’s dedication to individualized care is evidenced in the lush private treatment rooms wherein aestheticians tailor treatments such as microdermabrasion and organic airbrush tanning to fit each patron’s skin type and accommodate comfort levels. Bolstering existing beauty remains a spa specialty, but Impressions' team of RMTs also perfects the art of stress erasing through treatments such as Swedish massage, which can help relieve trauma resulting from having a quarter painfully extracted from an ear by a street magician.
One exerciser lunges across the parking lot, toting a kettlebell in each hand. Inside, another lifts a huge weight over her head, while two more dangle from the gymnast's rings suspended from the ceiling. Muscles bulge, people grunt and sweat. It's just another day in a CrossFit box.
The particular gyms in question happen to be located in Mississauga and Bolton, but each features the same amenities: weight-lifting gear, gymnastics equipment, and a whole lot of open space for functional movement training. As their philosophy dictates, the trainers at each location provide a new workout every day, preventing their customers from becoming bored and their kettlebells from becoming too attached to any one person and following them home.
Eight CrossFit Level 1–certified trainers unite their backgrounds as professional firefighters, medical personnel, and hockey or snowboarding athletes to form a dedicated gym family, guiding apprentices in their journeys to fitness. Members of the tight-knit team took 3rd place in the 2012 Reebok/CrossFit Canada East Regional Competition, where they clambered onto the event podium to cement their finish by hand-bending a block of molten bronze into a trophy.
During guided classes, they welcome newcomers to the fold by committing each student's name to memory as they tackle intense Workout of the Day routines. CrossFit's catalogue of functional movements—actions relevant to real life and befitting how our anatomy works—include squats, dead-lifts, pull-ups, kettle bell swings, and box jumps among other exercises, all of which can be scaled to individual strength levels. Workouts might even call for the ascension of dangling ropes or heaving loaded sleds across the floor without opening any of the presents heaped on top. Such a reliance on muscle confusion aims to keeps physiques from settling into monotonous reps or hitting a fitness plateau.
Having trained Amy Reid, the current Twin Dragon Canadian women’s flyweight champion, as well as Jason Leava, the USKBA men’s middleweight champion, the coaches at Effective Kickboxing know how to train those of all skill levels and fitness. Their client roster also includes heavy hitters such as Starr Guest, EOFL women's flyweight champion, and Robert Hymans, men's EOFL heavyweight and now the Twin Dragon Kickboxing association's super heavy weight champion. While working with such elite fighters dominates much of their time, instructors also help keep nonfighters in peak physical shape. During high-intensity classes, trainers combine endurance, strength, and flexibility exercises so that participants can burn up to 900 calories per session. Each class features enough kicks and punches to convince shadows to wear mouth guards, and coaches instruct on methods of maintaining balance, precision, and striking power.
Build My Body Beautiful™ (BMBB) is a Toronto based, fitness & wellness company, that provides a variety of holistic programs & services to women. BMBB uses a mix of fitness programs, motivational hypnosis for sports and weight management and nutrition consulting to help women reach their goals.
Longtime members of Functional Fitness Toronto are flexible. So is owner and trainer Romeo Nankoo, who helps them get flexible—and strong, and tenacious—by finding time for his clients during lunch hours, after work, or even at their own homes or any location with a quicksand-free surface. Most of the time, however, he leads personal-training sessions and workouts at Dynamic Conditioning Centre, a well-stocked but relatively distraction-free workout space where gymnastic rings, free weights, and kettle bells take the place of elaborate fitness machines. In designing his workouts, Nankoo is inspired by disciplines as diverse as muay thai and aikido, which he combines freely to make his clients feel better and stronger in every aspect of their lives.