Between constant pants and grunts, it can be tough to belt a few song lyrics. But at S&L Tri-Cycle Fit Studio, students strive to do just, spinning feverishly while singing into handheld microphones during karaoke cycling class. The musical motif carries over to the studio's other cycling classes, such as pedal parties, whose colored lights, thumping beats, and disco ball recreate the experience of a nightclub without the mean bouncer drawing mustaches on everyone's IDs.
All these unique class concepts sprout from the mind of owner Leslie Grosshauser, who's worked in the fitness industry for more than 25 years. In S&L, Leslie cultivates a place to get fit, have fun, and fulfill a competitive edge while experiencing plenty of variety—a key component to keeping routines fresh.
Equipment: Aerial hammocks, poles, Pilates equipment, spin bikes, weights, yoga mats
Students Should Bring: Water, yoga mat
Registration Required: Yes
Good for Beginners: Yes
Average Class Length: 60 minutes
Number of Staff: 1?5 people
Class Location: Indoors only
Parking: Parking lot
The sky's the limit at Flying Buddha Fitness. Or, perhaps more appropriately, the ceiling is. Aerial yoga is one of the fitness studio's specialties, and challenges students to perform traditional yoga moves while suspended in fabric hammocks that are attached to the ceiling. It sounds both exhilarating and exhausting, but the method is actually quite accessible for students of all fitness levels. The hammocks are hung close to the ground, so beginners can feel safe as they learn how to use the fabric to maneuver in-and-out of poses, support their body weight, and make old workout clothes feel stylish again, while experienced aerial yogis can work their way up to performing acrobatic maneuvers such as inversions and flips.
Of course, Flying Buddha has plenty of classes for those who prefer to stay on the ground as well. The schedule features everything from meditative vinyasa yoga sessions to upbeat turbo kick and piloxing classes. And, although challenging workouts abound, the studio maintains a family-friendly vibe, as evidenced by its array of youth classes and Friday night family fitness sessions.
Chicago Racquet & Fitness Club boasts a team of trainers dedicated to a wide range of group fitness regimens. Staffers helps members refine their racquetball game on one of three state-of-the-art glass-back courts, or lead classes in everything from yoga and Zumba to cycling and suspension training. Members can work out independently using the various fitness equipment or swimming pool. Locker rooms and a sauna are available for visitors' convenience, as is a children's play area that keeps members' youngsters occupied with toys and picture books about the importance of maintaining toned biceps.
Cycling, swimming, and running form the three legs of every triathlon. Those same activities are the focus at Tri Right Coaching, which offers comprehensive training for everyone from casual enthusiasts to competitive athletes. Founded by MJ Gasik?a coach with experience competing in more than 100 triathlons, including Ironman events at the international level?Tri Right Coaching designs individualized training regimens intended to improve technique and form, based on each participant's experience and goals. Swim analyses help develop more efficient strokes that generate greater power; and cycling instruction can cover the fundamentals of everything from pacelining and group etiquette to changing flat tires.
The trainers at Fit on Demand (formerly 3rd Dimension Fitness) believe that time flies when you're having fun. That's why they structure workout sessions around having a good time, supplementing their always-changing energetic routines with doses of personal attention for participants of all fitness levels. Each group class, including Zumba, spin, and yoga, varies with each session, preventing boredom and muscles from becoming accustomed to movements, resulting in less-effective workouts. Though more intense than a traditional exercise session, boot-camp classes still infuse fun into their steps with varying techniques and classes held in parks packed with feral clowns. Boot camps are held in rain or shine, and stadium boot camps incorporate stair sprints and bleacher workouts. Further helping clients reach their fitness goals, nutrition and stress-management counselors are on hand to coach participants through lifestyle changes with meal-planning tips and an upbeat perspective. The gym’s name isn’t the only recent change. New group classes such as SpinFusion and kickboxing have been added to the schedule; new elliptical machines, treadmills, and stationary bikes now beckon exercisers; and extended hours make finding time to work out easy and convenient.
Grounded in the idea that group exercise not only is suitable for all levels of fitness, but works to motivate participants in a unique and positive manner, the staff of Elixir gets bodies in motion. A dozen different classes—ranging from Zumba to Les Mills BodyCombat—are set to upbeat music, designed to inspire movement, tone the body, and shed pounds. The club also offers childcare six days a week, so parents can drop their kids in a safe, friendly environment while they get in a workout.