Absolute Center's smorgasbord of fitness classes spans fields from Pilates to TRX and yoga, with all instructors bolstering their teacher certification with ongoing in-house training. The expansive studio is flush with the equipment necessary to help students accomplish physical and mental fitness, with CoreAlign posture-improving equipment sidekicked by Pilates reformers and roaming herds of yoga mats. In addition to a thorough screening to capture educational experience and personality, each Absolute Center trainer graduates from custom-tailored lessons on practical exercise, human anatomy, and cursive writing.
Shape Shifters Pilates and Health Studio's founder, Terra Khemiri, had to face one of her worst fears as a parent: her son developed a medical condition. When he was 6, his doctors discovered that his bone growth was a year and a half behind the normal rate, and they couldn’t explain it. That’s when Terra decided to take matters into her own hands, and she began studying the content of the foods he was eating. She found an alarming number of additives in the form of artificial flavors, colors, and preservatives. When Terra eliminated these additives along with processed sugar and milk products from her son’s diet, his condition is said to have quickly disappeared.
In addition to her nutritional knowledge, her background in rehabilitative massage, homeopathy, and Pilates led her to teach others how to take control of their own wellness at her studio, Shape Shifters. She has developed a program that combines Pilates, nutrition counseling, and therapeutic massage, designed for clients ranging from teen athletes to seniors. She helps rehabilitate those recovering from surgery, and she accommodates expectant mothers by addressing hormonal shifts and giving them the strength to pry their tyke from the vicious stork’s clutches.
Log-cabin rafters hang high over the fitness area at Star Pilates, providing a calm, rustic view for clients looking up from their yoga mats or Pilates machines. A collection of cardio equipment such as spin bikes, elliptical machines, and treadmills also populates the floor, which guests can access at any time via electronic key card. During personal training sessions and classes in Pilates or TRX, the gym’s on-site experts help guests immolate unwanted calories and rid mind of distractions through their workouts’ focused motions. They also host a variety of specialized classes that range from Pilates for seniors to power Pilates for athletes and superheroes who’ve taken the winter off.
Scheduled seven days a week, Yoga Mandala's classes encompass a variety of traditional styles. Drop through the roof and into a Vinyasa class, which is an endurance-based style that flows from posture to posture, or give Hatha a whirl and begin the journey through proper posture, sustained breathing patterns, and mind-body awareness. During class, absorb the emanating energy of Yoga Mandala's veteran instructors, who will smoothly demonstrate each style's balance of relaxation and domination of your muscular reaches. After class, emerge with increased circulation, decreased rigidness, and new insights into reality-television plotlines.
After walking through the studio’s namesake entryway, visitors to Funky Door Yoga Polk Street are greeted by the grunts of Bikram practitioners carried on waves of steamy heat. The stretch dojo's seven-day schedule boasts early-morning, afternoon, and evening classes that take place in a classroom stoked to up to 105 degrees, the perfect temperature for facilitating flexibility or melting a corporate rival's ice statue in effigy. Students run through Bikram Choudhury’s 26 poses that pique muscles, organs, veins, and ligaments while the sweltering heat flushes toxins from the body. After a 90-minute session, students can hop into one of Funky Door Yoga Polk Street's showers, or down a bottle of water or sports drink available for purchase. The studio also stocks rentable mats and towels for greenhorn yogis not quite experienced enough to levitate.
The bright studio helps students fine-tune posework with wall-to-wall mirrors, and the expansive floor space affords enough space to execute even the most complex poses. Two nearby parking lots and metered parking afford convenient parking for car-toting students.
At bePhysique, the instructors believe in the power of graceful movement, posture, and breath—which can be useful not just in the studio during mat or barre Pilates classes, but to create overall wellness and transform self-perceptions. A friendly, noncompetitive studio environment helps put all clients at ease, regardless of experience or fitness levels. The staff animates that spirit as they help students improve their form and challenge their bodies to create graceful, dancer-esque physiques without any pressure to wear a tutu—unlike at a job on the tutu assembly line. In personal yoga sessions or stretching massages, clients work through a flowing blend of stretches and bodywork for deep relaxation and improved overall flexibility. Certified instructor Annabel Castaldo leads the staff, and she has 14 years of experience teaching Pilates, yoga, and Lotte Berk method–based classes.