Extreme Fitness sets Toronto's calories ablaze at the 13 renovated, multimillion-dollar locations peppered throughout the greater suburban area. Each facility hosts a menagerie of group fitness classes, which can be taken à la carte or bundled into a gym membership. Muscles loosen up in hot-yoga classes or bulge into sinewy symbols of might in outdoor boot camps, where students soak up vitamin D or distill Capri Sun from the sun's rays. To make sure members get the most of the gym's myriad amenities, personal trainers kick off fitness journeys with their Smart Start program, taking BMI measurements and analyzing heart health and oxygen uptake to give patrons a clearer picture of how much and what types of exercise they need to hit their goals.
After working up a calorie-blasting sweat, members can retire to the steam rooms or whirlpool tubs to soothe sore muscles. The internet business lounge lets people catch up on email while sipping a rejuvenating smoothie from the juice bar, and the basketball courts host pick-up games where adults can show underdog teams of fifth-graders that it takes a little more than pluck and an adorable animal sidekick to win games.
Walking the plank is one of the scariest things you can do as a buccaneer, but not at Mega Fun 4 Kids. On its pirate-ship play structure, the plank is a slide kids can zoom down while their fellow playmates pretend to steer the vessel. Elsewhere in the 2,800-square-foot indoor playground, youngsters aged 8 and younger cook meals in the play kitchen, play dress-up in the costume corner, and ride a mini rollercoaster. Along with daily playtime, Mega Fun 4 Kids hosts frequent events, including family nights with movies and pizza and visits from kids’ celebrated characters such as Tigger and the third guy who voiced Piglet. For birthdays, staff party consultants plan soirees that delight kids with private time on the playground and can include extras such as jumping castles or screening of a favourite movie.
Upon entering Me First Fitness, awarded the Diamond award for Best Boot Camp from News Advertiser from 2009 to 2014, guests notice a distinct absence of rows of people doing the same exercises over and over on the same machines again and again. Here, patrons battle their own body weight with TRX suspension trainers, swing kettlebells, lift weights, and shed pounds using interval training programs to whip into shape. The staff of certified and specialized trainers pushes patrons to achieve healthy lifestyles through personal-training sessions and 40 different classes each week, including high-intensity boot-camp classes. They boast that no two workouts are the same, preventing minds from getting bored and bodies from becoming accustomed to the movements, thus rendering workouts less effective. To supplement their body-sculpting workouts, the trainers motivate guests to change their diets, equipping them with healthful meal plans and recipes, and raiding secret storage lockers full of Twinkies.
John Melich founded Champion Boxing Club in 1984 as a place for training professional fighters, sending students to Olympic competitions and Canadian and North American championships. Today, the ring welcomes trainees of all ages and skill levels, from kids looking to stand up to bullies, to adults seeking a fun, engaging way to stay in shape. A wealth of special programs helps students target their specific needs. For example, boxing legend [George Chuvalo] leads (http://www.championboxingclub.com/george-chuvalo/) anti-gang and anti-drug programs for youth, while other professional fighters lead one-on-one and personal training sessions for adults. The staff of ex-prizefighters and certified instructors bring a wealth of old-school expertise to classes with a lively twists, from 1940s wound-tending techniques from a seasoned cutman, to traditional cornering, jabbing, and footwork for fun-filled fitness training.
Studio owner Zahra aims to help empower the women she works with, whether she?s helming her annual makeup drive for a local women?s shelter or while teaching the sinuous art of belly dance at her studio. Since 2001, her Zahra?s School of Dance has helped women celebrate their bodies, with special workshops led by international belly dance icons in addition to her regularly scheduled classes and workshops. In all classes, instructors teach graceful moves that centre on the lower body and focus on the waist and hips. Higher-level courses incorporate props such as veils and tambourines, eschewing the most basic belly-dancing prop, a T-shirt with six-pack abs drawn on it. Specialty classes, meanwhile, may combine belly dancing with various different dance genres. Most of these are age-appropriate for kids.
Reshmi Chetram has been dazzling audiences on the dance floor with vibrant costumes and explosive movements for more than 16 years. Following the fancy footsteps of her mother—who founded both the Tarana Dance Centre and Natya Arts Productions—she has studied classical Indian dance, Kathak, in New Delhi under the guidance of renowned Indian-dance guru Pandit Birju Maharaj. She has also studied Bollywood and contemporary Indian dance in Toronto and abroad. In 2008, she channelled her dance skills to create BollyFuze (formerly known as BollyFit), a full-body conditioning program that helps students of all ages and abilities get whipped into shape with a blend of traditional Indian dance moves and aerobic exercise steps. She and her team of certified BollyFuze instructors lead clients in burning calories and sculpting fitter physiques in classes including the high-intensity BollyFuze Cardio, low-intensity BollyFuze Rhythm, and fun-filled BollyTots.
Extending her knowledge beyond the workout studio, Reshmi hosts her own BollyFuze television series. She and her instructors lead Bollywood-dance-inspired workouts that patrons can join in the comforts of their own homes without needing to make 1,000 friends.